Celebrating The Lovable Ines Tambunting

Enter a tropical garden and join our celebrant as she marks a very special coming of age.

I remember when Ines was still in her mother’s womb; I attended all her baby birthday parties…  How did three decades fly by? 

Beautiful Inés (Nessie) Tambunting recently marked her 30th with a cozy garden party at home one balmy summer evening. The lush tropical setting was a refreshing oasis amidst the sizzling Manila temperatures. With Malasimbo as her peg, majestic trees around the garden were bathed in swaths of colored lights. Inviting lounge areas with low tables and giant triangle cushions on banigs strewn across the lawn set the tone. Inés wore Charina Sarte and asked everyone to come in “tropical colorful” to keep it chill and casual.

READ ALSO: Modern And Mindful Motherhood: Bea And Beng Dee On Family, Business, Style, And The Power Of Making The World A Better Place

Comfort Food

Food stations around the garden served up Nessie’s  “dream” party menu. “I’ve always wanted to have a children’s food-themed  party as an adult because, let’s be honest, the food is so much better!” said the gregarious celebrant with a laugh. And she certainly made sure to have all her favorites in the line-up.

The Pancake House buffet station was a hands-down winner with their bestsellers fueling the crowd all night long: spaghetti, pan chicken, tacos and the best pancakes in town. 

With the record highs, everyone made a beeline for the signature Barcino Sangria, the perfect quencher in the heat wave that has gripped the city. The Barcino Bar was gifted by one of Nessie’s dearest friends, Maria Lorenzo. 

Potato Corner whipped up delicious fries in three flavors (cheese, sour cream and bbq) while a Tusok-Tusok station offered fish balls, squid balls and kikiam on a stick. Also on the menu were Spritz Cosmo cocktails (a special gift from Bianca Syching and Kyle Ley), passed around to complement corndogs and cheese pimiento sandwiches. Not to be missed, the ubiquitous Dirty Ice Cream cart was strategically posted poolside. 

As the evening progressed, a DIY arroz caldo station was set up to the delight of all the late-nighters, with a smorgasbord of toppings to select from. 

Chill Vibes

Keeping things simple, Ines had  DJ Aneru playing “songs you can sing to, party to, tropical house and top 50s tita music.” 

DJ Anreu (Arnel Genterone)

Meanwhile, in a quiet corner of the garden, two electronic mahjong tables kept the Titas and Tambunting cousins entertained up to the wee hours. 

Xandra & Raina Puyat, Miguel Go, Anton Puyat, Ralph Pazcoguin

Before midnight, Joanie Mitchell, Ines’s former boss, pumped up the volume with a “dirty-thirty” Bring Me game that left the entire crowd in stitches. 

At exactly the stroke of twelve, Kali Huff grabbed the mike and led the Happy Birthday song as Ella Pangilinan-Miranda and Regina Ongsiako brought out the cakes. After blowing out her candles, Ines was profuse in thanking all her friends and family for being there to celebrate such a special moment in her life. She had nothing but love “for the people who are dear to my heart and who have been with me through life’s greatest woes and greatest highs – the people who let me be unapologetically me.” 

In her very own words, what made the night most memorable was simply “being able to just hangout and see all of my friends and have my parents meet a lot of them for the first time.”  The icing on the cake was the surprise appearance by her accidental BFF, Kiana Valenciano, who dashed in straight after her father, Gary V’s “One Last Time” concert at the MOA Arena, just in time to give Nessie a big fat birthday hug. 

Kiana Valenciano and Ines Tambunting

Nearest & Dearest

We rounded up a few of the birthday girl’s besties and dearest Titas to share their fondest memories and wishes on this milestone year:

Fernando Zobel de Ayala, Mia Borromeo, Kit Zobel De Ayala, Jessica Puyat Matan and Shakar Turgeman, and Miguel Tambunting

“What I love the most about Ines is that she goes above and beyond for the people she cares about, even if it means having to travel to check if they’re okay. She’s done that for me. I know she’s a friend for all seasons. My wish for Ines is to have all the love she deserves and more, and for her thirties to be the best time of her life!” – Ella Pangilinan Miranda 

Ines with Dad Miguel

“I wish for her happiness and to be a boss babe! Ines is such a genuine friend and “will do anything for you.” She’s a special girl loved by so many, including me.” – Neelam Gopwani

Sofia Cojuanco, Ella Pangilinan Miranda, Neelam Gopwani Chainani, Anton Cojuanco

“Inés, I wish you a lifetime of peace, growth and happiness.” – María Lorenzo

“What I love most about Ines is how genuine and caring she is. She would truly drop anything to help a friend in need. I hope that you have an amazing adventure-filled year ahead, filled with laughter, friends and new experiences.” – Natalia Peña

“You are the older sister I wish I had; you are the best friend I never expected; you are absolutely amazing and inspiring in every single way. I have the greatest pleasure of being your cousin, your family. Today I celebrate YOU!  Happiest birthday, Nessie. I’m blessed to be able to share this lifetime with you!” – Regina Ongsiako

Claudia Wilson-Tambunting, Kit Zobel de Ayala, Cristina Davila, Mia Borromeo, Tinette Puyat, and Marissa Tambunting

“Cheers to more crazy stories, hilarious conversations, random situations and growth and love. I’m so happy I get to celebrate with you this year!” – Kiana Valenciano

Jaskran Singh, Shamina Sujanani, Roma Hemlani Singh, Roshni Hemlani, Natalia Pena

“Ines has always been so sweet and friendly. She can talk to me, she can talk to Jaime (my husband)) or she can talk to any of my kids. Age doesn’t matter with her. She can have fun with anyone. She is so easy! I wish her all the success in anything she chooses to do! May your 30th be the start of many exciting years to come! Cheers Ines!” – Cristina Hagedorn Dávila

“Ines is so lovable  because  she’s full of great  ideas for fun times.  She’s  ultra  spunky and  wants  to help  everyone. My wish  for Ines  is that she be naturally directed to her ultimate  dreams.. May  her 30th be filled with  blessings.” – Tinette Puyat

“What do I love about Ines?  She’s confident and assertive, fearless, frank and outspoken, makulit but lovable. I love how I can always depend on her when I’m in a bind. Ines, as you turn 30, I wish that you never lose that drive and determination. Never lose your sense of self and never settle for what someone else wants you to be. Most of all, be kind to yourself. In my eyes, you are worthy.” – Neny Montinola Paradies

LLP, Ines! The world is your oyster! May all your birthday dreams come true. 

Photos by Willy Saw. 

Shop for LIFESTYLE ASIA’S magazines through these platforms.
Download LIFESTYLE ASIA’s digital magazines from:
Subscribe via [email protected]