(STAR) C'EST CEBU By Honey Jarque Loop - Over the years, Cebuano friends and most out-of-towners agree there is no better place in Cebu to welcome the New Year with great expectation and renewed resolution that one hopes to fulfill, other than at the Casino Español de Cebu.

A firm believer of time-honored traditions, active club members and their guests celebrated the Despedida del Año Viejo y Bienvenida Al Año Nuevo with the “Baile de Disfrases,” the much-awaited annual costume ball.

As they have faithfully done for the last eight years the members and their guests came in every imaginable outfit.

The winners in the individual category were Jojo Buron as Eagle Man for Peace, and Mary Jane Estallilla as the Venetian Lady.

The award for the Most Original Couple went to Lizette Garcia and Paking Serafica who were dressed as circus clowns complete with hula hoops and tambourines. Club president Manoling Sainz and his wife Melba, who were dressed as a Mexican and Chinese Couple, won in the Re-Creation category.

There were two gran premios for the group. Most original were the Drag Queens who made a grand entrance completely covered in yards upon yards of black thick fabric. As the music played on the black yard covering came off. Everyone was mesmerized. Absolutely no one recognized the macho gentlemen turned lovely ladies. There was the ever-sexy Marilyn Monroe in her trademark white dress, blonde hair, and a huge facial mole in the person of Brian Head. Mikel Rotaeche was a genteel Japanese geisha while Eduard Loop was the legendary Cleopatra. Jay Chiongbian in a mini, mini red skirt simply floored everyone. They were joined by Eduque Jarque, elegant in a black tube dress and strands of pearls, and Andre Borromeo in an eye-catching bubble dress. Blondies Paco Jarque and Marko Sarmiento were unbelievably gorgeous in glittering evening attires, while the Martinez brothers Iñaki wore black leggings and Pipin came in a sarong.

The Most Colorful group, hands down, was The Happy Clowns. They included Cisco and Marilen Jarque, Dumaguete residents Robby and Amanda Vicente, Ramon Jarque and his partner Marisol Michael, the trio Lehn Jarque, Ana Climaco and Nora Lamata, Bingen and Annette Mendezona and the author Honey Loop with hubby Glenn Loop.

The winners in the Re-Creation category went to the Mad Dolls. Six couples dressed in a ’60s getup were composed of Ato and Gigi Alvarez, Emil and Bernice Montenegro, Martin and Marisol Montenegro, Louis and Lyn Moro, Buloy and Virginia Durano and Lito and Chati Garcia.

Worth mentioning were the nine beautiful, sexy young ladies dressed in black who did a fabulous dance number based on the popular Broadway musical Chicago. They included Monique and Miren Jarque, Aimil Sarmiento, Maitina Borromeo, Meryll del Gallego, Amanda Nicholls, Jessica del Gallego, Stacy Celdran and Sophia Jordana.

It was the best costume ball ever. The unbeatable live music of the popular Renaissance Band roared toda la noche way past the countdown.

Casino Epañol de Cebu was definitely the place to be to greet the New Year.

Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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