Entertaining Inspo: How to Do Amina Aranaz Alunan’s Chic Filipino Merienda

  • October 10, 2018

Amina Aranaz Alunan, designer of renowned local bag brand Aranaz, works closely with her mother Becky Aranaz (president and founder) and sister Rosanna (international brand and sales manager). Today’s work meeting turned into a mother-daughter Filipino-inspired merienda.

“When entertaining, I not only want to create a memorable experience for my guests, but I also want it to be a visual feast,” explains Amina. Her key elements for creating a festive landscape are fresh flowers and fruits (often picked from her or her mother’s gardens), scented candles or essential oils, and a great playlist. “I work around a particular theme to tie in the menu and all other elements.”

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Amina Aranaz Aluman for Lifestyle Asia (Photograph by Floyd Jhocson)
Amina Aranaz Aluman for Lifestyle Asia (Photograph by Floyd Jhocson)


For this particular merienda, Amina chose a tropical Filipino mood. Her mother Becky chose to give up the city life for more laid-back living in the south, where she plants her own fruits and vegetables in her garden. “This is a very community-centered village,” explains Becky of where she lives now. “My neighbors and I exchange produce very often. We even have a neighbor who has an ice machine and we can get from him anytime.”

Set in her mother’s outdoor terrace, Amina did not run out of plants and fruits to use as both décor and desserts. Fitting to the theme, she used ARANAZ dinner plates and some of their bags as centerpieces. No Filipino merienda is complete without the traditional bibingka, puto bumbong and fresh Filipino fruits. Additions were champagne, a cheese board, Greek salad, and homemade cannelles by Rosanna—all staples in any Aranaz gathering.

Scroll down to see more photos from Armina Aranaz Aluman’s Filipino merienda…

Amina Aranaz with her sister Rosana and mother, Becky (Photograph by Floyd Jhocson)
Amina Aranaz with her sister Rosana and mother, Becky (Photograph by Floyd Jhocson)
Fitting the theme of tropical Filipino merienda, Amina Aranaz incorporated plates and bags as centerpieces from their business, ARANAZ (Photograph by Floyd Jhocson)
Fitting the theme of tropical Filipino merienda, Amina Aranaz Aluman incorporated plates and bags as centerpieces from their business, ARANAZ (Photograph by Floyd Jhocson)
Amina tries to make her get-togethers a visual feast through her well-designed tablescapes (Photograph by Floyd Jhocson)
Amina tries to make her get-togethers a visual feast through her well-designed tablescapes (Photograph by Floyd Jhocson)
No Aranaz get together is complete without delicious Filipino desserts (Photograph by Floyd Jhocson)
No Aranaz get together is complete without delicious Filipino desserts (Photograph by Floyd Jhocson)
Amina Aranaz Aluman for Lifestyle Asia (Photograph by Floyd Jhocson)
Amina Aranaz Aluman for Lifestyle Asia (Photograph by Floyd Jhocson)


This article was originally published in our latest coffee table book “Lifestyle Asia. Millennials. Travel. Entertaining.” To see more parties from Manila’s most discerning hosts and hostesses, you can purchase the book by sending us a private message on Instagram (@lifestyle_asia) or on our Facebook page. The book is also available in leading bookstands.

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