Christmas is the season of giving.
This is the theme of Marriott Hotel Manila for their Christmas tree lighting held last November 24, at the hotel lobby.
The event featured an auction that will benefit the Habitat for Humanity, an organization that builds houses for the less fortunate. Ruffa Gutierrez donated one of her purple gowns, while Daphne Oseña-Paez gave a hand-carved white chair. Both were auctioned off with a minimum bid price of 20,000 pesos.
Other personalities who supported the event were Phoemela Baranda, Tessa Prieto-Valdes, Charice Pempengco, Connie Sison, and Vince Hizon.
PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) was one of the media outfits invited to witness this yearly event, which started with a small program hosted by Phoemela Baranda.
Guests were treated to a performance by "Life is a Cabaret," a European theater group that recently staged shows at the Newport Performing Arts Theater of Resorts World Manila.
Rhap Salazar, grand champion of ABS-CBN's defunct talent show Little Big Star, Glee Nette Gaddi, a one-time winner in TV5's talent search Talentadong Pinoy, and Jude Matthew Servilla, the "Birit Baby" champion of Eat Bulaga! in 2009, serenaded the crowd.
Their repertoire included Christmas carols like "O Holy Night," "Silent Night," "Jingle Bell Rock," and "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer."
Immediately after the program was the tree-lighting ceremony led by 2011 Miss World 1st Princess Gwendoline Ruais, who was accompanied by Edna Calixto (wife of Pasay City Mayor Antonio Calixto) and hotel general manager Richard Saul.
Loot bags filled with candy and toys were handed out to kids by yes, Santa Claus.
Truly, the spirit of Christmas is in the air!