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Entertainment

Toni Gonzaga grateful for ‘unexpected blessings’ in 20-year career

Charmie Joy Pagulong - The Philippine Star
Toni Gonzaga grateful for âunexpected blessingsâ in 20-year career
Toni Gonzaga feels ‘very grateful and blessed’ to be Shopee Philippines’ newest brand ambassador. Photo from Instagram account of hairstylist Antonio Mapa.

MANILA, Philippines — As the newest ambassador of Shopee Philippines, Toni Gonzaga considered the partnership with the e-commerce platform “very special because it’s a dream come true to represent a brand I’ve trusted for so many years.”

She felt “really grateful” and “blessed” to be part of the Shopee media family, the host-actress-vlogger said during the 10.10 Brands Festival event held last week. “We are also grateful because since yesterday, we are trending. And today, we are grateful to our netizens for the mentions, for the engagements, you know. We are grateful for them because they are also one of the reasons why we are here where we are today.”

The company trended on social media platforms after netizens criticized it for having Toni as brand ambassador amid reported laying off of employees in its Philippine branches. There were also viral posts that defended the host-actress and the company.

Toni, nevertheless, said she’s “thankful for the trending na ginawa sa atin ng mga netizens because they helped us with the engagements, mentions and they are also helping promote Shopee more. So we are grateful for that because you are promoting Shopee.”

The celebrity endorser with Shopee Philippines director Martin Yu during the e-commerce platform’s 10.10 Brands Festival media event at the Grand Hyatt Manila, Taguig City.

“It’s such a happy, happy experience to be part of a family that gives, you know, so much service to the Filipinos, joy to the Filipinos (and) convenience to the Filipinos,” she added.

The endorsement, according to her, is “one of the biggest blessings that I consider this year.”

When Toni found out that she would be the endorser, she immediately called her sister, Alex, who was once a Shopee ambassador, to share the good news.

“Sobrang tuwang-tuwa siya… She said, ‘Yehey! So happy for you.’ Because she knows that I have been a loyal customer and user of Shopee,” she shared.

The former Pinoy Big Brother host has been a customer for almost six to seven years. She learned about the shopping app through their “house angels.” She recalled, “I was pregnant with Seve (at that time). I remember yung mga ‘house angels’ namin, they will get deliveries. Tapos parang mga small items, trinkets, small gadgets na nabibili nila so I asked them, sabi ko, ‘Saan galing? Paano na-deliver sa bahay?’”

“Then they told me there’s this app called Shopee, where you could just go online and search anything for your needs. Anything that you’re looking for at a particular moment, tapos it will be delivered to you in three to four days,” she further said.

As for her online shopping tips, she recommended that buyers should weigh carefully if the item is a necessity, reasonably priced and of great quality. The latest items she bought online were giveaways she had for the guests during her son’s sixth birthday last Sept. 30.

Toni recently posted on Instagram a photo of Seve having a grand time at Enchanted Kingdom and greeted him a happy birthday.

“My dream for Seve is to grow up healthy, strong and happy. We order in Shopee together so it would be fun if he gets to be part of the family, too,” she told The STAR in an e-mail interview when asked if it’s OK with her to let Seve join Shopee as an endorser in the future.

She was further queried on the lessons she learned from the showbiz industry over the course of her decades-long career and answered, “Being in the business for two decades now has helped me become more grounded and appreciative of the small things. Believe in yourself, continue to be excellent at what you do and the blessings will follow you.”

Toni stars in the 2022 Metro Manila Filmfest entry My Teacher with veteran comedian Joey de Leon and celebrity couple Loisa Andalio and Ronnie Alonte.

Moreover, she still looks forward “to what God has in store for me. So many unexpected blessings have been coming along the way. I can always dream of something, but what I realized is that God’s dream for me is bigger than I could ever imagine.”

Toni has an upcoming movie titled My Teacher, an entry to the Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) this year. The film is directed by her husband Paul Soriano and the cast members include Joey de Leon, Kakai Bautista, Ronnie Alonte and Loisa Andalio.

“My Teacher is a dream project with Tito Joey de Leon. He’s been my mentor when I was just starting in the business. The film is our tribute to our great teachers and we can’t wait to show you a heartwarming, feel-good and funny film,” she said.

Meanwhile, director of Shopee Philippines Martin Yu said, “The 10.10 Brands Festival continues to enliven the promise of offering mas mura prices to Filipino shoppers. We have worked closely with our partner brands in bringing the best of brand deals to create a more meaningful year-end shopping experience.”

The ongoing 10.10 Brands Festival is the second in the company’s series of year-end shopping events.

TONI GONZAGA

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