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‘Light that focuses on Jesus’: Philippine parol inspires British designers for mall’s Christmas display

Deni Rose M. Afinidad-Bernardo - Philstar.com
�Light that focuses on Jesus�: Philippine parol inspires British designers for mall�s Christmas display
Rustan's Christmas 2023 window display in its Makati City branch
Photo release

MANILA, Philippines — “We want Christmas to be meaningful, special, not only commercial.”

Such, according to Rustan Commercial Corporation President Donnie Tantoco, was among the messages that Filipino retail chain Rustan’s wanted to share with its grand Christmas display this year following the theme “Light Up This Christmas.”

“The message is about light. We hired a British group to help us represent light in a different way because we are just emerging from the (COVID-19) pandemic and we’re so happy when they were so inspired by the Philippine parol at its highest level of artistry,” Tantoco shared in an interview with Philstar.com during the Christmas theme’s recent launch.

According to him, the designers used “the most amazing parols” they could find as inspiration to communicate the Filipino department store chain’s Christmas message.

“For us, it’s very important to really elevate what is Filipino and not to only put it here but also try to project what is unique in our Christmas in the Philippines.”

Window display
Photo release

Tantoco explained that they chose light as this year’s theme because “when you truly reflect on the true meaning of Christmas, you don’t also want to bring the joy of Christmas but also the enlightenment (brought) by Christmas.”

“Light is a very simple, easy-to-understand way to communicate that during Christmas. We like that light that focuses on Jesus,” he enthused.

He said that through the Christmas theme, their company tries to manifest light in and outside the store and “bring the message of light to the families and communities we serve.”

His favorite nooks from the Christmas spectacle are the Children’s area called “Twinkle Town,” as well as the Santas and pizza-making facilities.

Twinkle Town
Photo release

“Light Up This Christmas,” according to the company, is “an initiative that focuses on renewal and celebration.” 

For over seven decades, the company has treasured Christmas as “a time of hope, light, love, and peace.”

This joy, said the company, is aimed to be shared not only with shoppers, but with everyone through the sparkle of lights, evergreen trees, festive tunes, solemn hymns, as well as the decorations like tinsels, bells, nutcrackers, and snowglobes, along with the reds, greens, and various ornaments. 

In the Christmas Shop, one could discover an array of Christmas trees and enhance holiday decor with versatile ribbons, available in velvet, satin, plaid, and jeweled variations, allowing for creative and personalized accents. There is also a selection of Christmas pillows, tree skirts, stockings, and more, offering countless ways to infuse homes with festive flair.

The brand’s Makati branch underwent a magical transformation for its third floor into a Christmas wonderland known as Twinkle Town. Here, guests could meet and greet Santa Claus, indulge in pastries from Rebel Bakehouse, play around at Elf Academy, and even witness the spectacle of Elves in Skates.

Santa interaction
Photo release
Elves in Skates
Photo release

The launch event also signaled the return of the classic Christmas Registry, giving everyone the opportunity to shop at ease for loved ones during the holiday season. Adding another layer to the joyous occasion, the department store chain is hosting a Charity Registry in partnership with a local welfare program, allowing patrons to extend a warm and generous hand to vulnerable children throughout the season.

From the return of the anticipated Christmas Shop, to a grand day-long festivity packed with activities and interactive attractions, to promos and markdowns, the Christmas campaign promises to offer many things for discovery, exploration and indulgence. 

“The cheer of the season points to the magnificent hope brought by the humble birth of Jesus Christ,” the company stated.

“I hope that this Christmas would really be a Christmas of peace, a Christmas where families really have unity and diversity,” Tantoco said. “It’s about compassion. It’s about making sure that we take care of our families, but also take care of those around us and the less fortunate.”

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