Fashion

This World Traveler Relies On Classic Pieces For An Elegant Wardrobe

After moving back to Manila, Nicole Menchaca shares her favorite local finds.
IMAGE MEDAL ELEPAÑO
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After moving back to Manila, Nicole Menchaca shares her favorite local finds.

Hobbies and Interests
Having just moved back from Australia, I am enjoying all the wonderful places I am discovering. I love finding products that are uniquely Filipino and am happy wandering through markets and bazaars to find them. I started an Instagram account called @maynilastyle to showcase all the things l love about Manila. I enjoy interior decorating and am in love with Filipino ancestral homes—they are so charming and should be preserved for future generations.

Personal Uniform
During the day I prefer to be comfortable and casual—jeans and a shirt or a dress. At night, it’s fun to dress up and throw on some heels.


Describe Your Style
I have never been very daring with fashion. I love classic pieces that I know will withstand the test of time.

Travel Style Essentials
My favorite pashmina goes on every flight with me. On a beach trip I bring kaftans, floaty dresses, and a straw hat, and if it’s a winter destination I love my Australian Merino knitwear.

Home Essentials
Your home should be the one place you are truly happy. I love fresh flowers, scented candles, crisp cotton bed sheets, fine china, and beautiful glassware.


Style Philosophy
Keep it simple, stay true to yourself, and don’t forget to smile!

Style Icons
Jackie Kennedy Onassis and Audrey Hepburn. I also love Queen Letizia of Spain and Princess Mary of Denmark who both always look so stylish.

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Things That Inspire You
My family, travel, flowers, decorating magazines, long walks, and a relaxing glass of wine! And there is nothing like a trip to the beach to clear the mind. There is something about sand between my toes and swimming in the ocean that refreshes me and gives me a feeling that anything is possible.

“Your home should be the one place you are truly happy. I love fresh flowers, scented candles, crisp cotton bed sheets, fine china, and beautiful glassware.”

Favorite Cities
Manila and Sydney. I lived in Manila from when I was 14 to 21 years old and always felt so at home here. It is where I met my husband and my oldest friends, and I have so wonderful memories of growing up here. Sydney is where I was born as well as my son and daughter. My parents and sisters live there so I am still very connected to Sydney; it really is such a beautiful city.

Greatest Extravagance
I was 21 and living in Hong Kong, and I had just received my first salary. I ran to Landmark and bought an Italian handbag which I still have today.

Prized Possessions
A watch I received from my parents on my 21st birthday, an antique ring that my grandmother gave me before she passed away, and our family photographs in silver frames.


On Your Shopping List
Homeware—we still need quite a few items to furnish our apartment.

What You’re Collecting
At the moment, items from the Philippines. There are so many skilled artisans in this country and many pieces still created by hand that are no longer seen in other countries. I think it is very important to buy local.

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Favorite Accessory
A pair of rose gold and pearl earrings that always seem to complete any outfit.


Favorite Stores
Mentxaka for luxury lifestyle items and stunning jewelry, Oz Gallery for meticulously restored furniture, Carbon and Tint in Greenbelt 3, and Anne Marie Saguil’s Amarie for her beautiful embroidered clothing.

Favorite Sight
My favorite place in the Philippines is Amanpulo—it really is paradise and there is no other way to describe it.

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About The Author
Carole Cuasay-Tagle
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