Wonder Man

The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines - He has the sweet face of a boy and the stout heart of a man. He sees the world with childlike wonder and uses his experiences with the disposition of an adult filled with wisdom.

He lives each moment with joy. If challenges dispute his order of the day, he is certain that happiness is a friend who will not abandon him. His existence proves that bliss is a gift that a man earns, reaps and keeps.  

At 29, Lester Tanquilut is pretty much settled. He has a fulfilling career as head of sales and marketing of SCPG Asia Pacific, a company that distributes consumer goods. He gets to pamper himself by seeing the world once or twice a year because it is “my passion to travel.” At a young age, he already owns two units at The Grove by Rockwell in Ortigas — the first unit he acquired in 2009 by combining his earnings with the support of his parents; the second unit he purchased on his own a few years later.

He likes The Grove a lot because it gives him the resort feel amid the city. “The community is very pleasant. It’s like I go home every day to an island resort that is safe. I like to feel secure,” admits Lester who finished a degree in Management at the Ateneo de Manila University in 2007. He worked as a manager for Unilever for four years after graduating from college. He remains to be an active member of the Ateneo Chamber Singers, the choir of the alumni of his alma mater.

Ever since he transferred to The Grove in 2013, Lester has accustomed himself to living alone. He enjoys the freedom but he is quick to admit that it is “freedom with conscience” that he soaks himself in. “I belong to the generation that is obsessed with career success. We have luxury of choices. Not bad. But it is my personal take to enjoy my freedom with responsibility. I feel comfortable that way,” he says.

“And if I get homesick in the middle of the week, I visit my parents in Taytay, Rizal,” he continues, unmindful to show his vulnerability, a genuine trait that defines his healthy relationship with his own maturity. “I make time for my parents every weekend. That ‘recharges’ me. I randomly call them to update them about the things that I do. I think of them a lot and if I find some simple things that they will like, I buy them as my gifts for my mom and dad.”

His upbringing at home, Lester admits, drives him to excel. “There is constant motivation inside our home,” says Lester. His mother Edith is an anesthesiologist while his father Gil is a retired director for a multinational company. “I learned my work ethics from my parents. They taught my two elder siblings (an investment banker and a lawyer) and me to be reliable. They taught us to pursue what makes us happy. We are grateful for those lessons.”

The man in him further surfaces when Lester talks about financial intelligence. His maturity in dealing with money matters is born out of practicality and his desire to be financially independent.

“You have to set big financial goals. Are you saving for a project, say an exotic travel? Or an investment? Have your goals set then work on them. How? Set your budget. How much money is coming in? How much of your money is coming out? Can you afford what you are spending on at the moment?

“In the middle of achieving your goals, please don’t forget to reward yourself. Buy a pair of shoes. Maybe a new shirt. Depriving yourself of simple things that you like may develop a dislike towards saving,” he says.   

Yes, Lester is driven. He is genetically turbo-propped to succeed. But he also does not forget to smell the roses. He celebrates with friends and family. At the end of the day, he goes home happy and content.

At 29, Lester Tanquilut is a picture of a fulfilled man yet, when he smiles, a little boy is seen lounging in his eyes. Perhaps, it is the combination of the child and the man in his soul that keeps him ready to face the world every day.

That makes him the Wonder Man.
Photography by RITA MARIE • Creative direction and overall styling by Luis Espiritu Jr. • Grooming by BABA PARMA • Hairstyling by RONNIE TUMAMAK

• Associate styling by TARA SUBALDOShot on location at THE GROVE BY ROCKWELL












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