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Ross Tan and Sofia Coyiuto: A beautiful, high-energy wedding 

By MILLET M. MANANQUIL, The Philippine STAR Published Mar 10, 2024 5:00 am Updated Mar 11, 2024 7:59 am

What a most beautiful wedding. It had a love story that made us cry a little, a musical concert that made us sing and dance, a comedy that made us laugh a lot, a high-energy feast for the senses. 

The most admirable thing is that the wedding was obviously planned by the bride, Sofia Coyiuto, and the groom, Ross Tan, themselves, and their assemblage of friends who are as creative and talented as they are. 

Lesson learned for the elders: Let the young people plan their own weddings, and you will just sit down and enjoy!

The couple with their dog of honor, Stella Bey Bear

The love story unfolded last Feb. 25 at the Santuario de San Antonio where dainty white Baby’s Breath filled the church with tenderness as the entourage came in while Gab Pangilinan sang Two Words. The bride was beautiful in Monique Lhuillier (later changing into a Vania Romoff at the reception, as she had clearly chosen two strong and independent Filipino women designers); the groom smart in Common Suits, and the entourage in Rajo Laurel and Sharleen Solis. Elena Coyiuto, mother of the bride, was lovely in Lanvin, as was mother of the groom Phoebe Tan, in a Jun Escario gown. The two moms wore Escario during the reception.

The newlyweds Ross Tan and Sofia Coyiuto brought the house down with their first dance

The principal sponsors came in, all smiles and gently, though they were a high-powered cast: Sabin Aboitiz, Tessie Sy-Coson, Enrique Razon, Robina Gokongwei-Pe, Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, Zeni Yao, Robert Coyiuto Jr., Rita Lim, Ronald Dy, Monina Lopez, Siso Lao, Hetty Que, Wyland Sichangco, Emilia Roxas, Joseph Yao, and Maria Grace Uy.

The Coyiuto family welcoming their new member: Samantha Coyiuto, Alexander Coyiuto, Jamie Coyiuto, Elena Coyiuto, Peter Coyiuto, Jacob Tay, Stephanie Tay, Joseph Tay, Teo Tay and Seji Tay

The Conrad Manila ballroom was magically transformed into a vision of ethereal clouds perfumed by more tender flowers by Teddy Manuel. The food was so excellent, every course was devoured by guests. The program was a series of songs, dances, and speeches which were refreshing as these were delivered with candor and sincerity.

All hugs from the Tan family: Candice Tan, Lance Tan, Phoebe Tan, Marisse Tan, Chester Tan, Kyle Tan, Charlie Tan, Lara Tan

Witty father of the bride Peter Coyiuto made us both cry and laugh with his usual brand of humor. “Remember, I am your first love,” he told the bride. ”Your groom is only your second love.”

The video on their love story was written by, who else, but the brilliant Samantha Coyiuto, our past Young STAR editor, whose latest book is a global hit. Co-narrator was Ross’ brother, Kyle Tan.

Ross and Sofia with the principal sponsors (first row): Grace Uy, Monina Lopez, Robina Gokongwei-Pe, Tessie Sy-Coson, Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, Sabin Aboitiz, Ricky Razon and Robert Coyiuto Jr., second row: Zeni Yao, Rita Lim, Hetty Que, Emilia Roxas-Yang, Siso Lao, Ronald Dy, Wyland Sichangco and Joseph Yao

There was never a dull moment during the reception. “I found my dance partner for life!” exclaimed Sofia, co-founder of the 808 Studio, as she danced with Ross, famously a dancer during his Xavier and Ateneo days. Singers Gab and Kara Pangilinan, who are close friends of the couple, sang Two Words and Journey by Lea Salonga, Runaway by The Corrs, followed by Landslide by Fleetwood Mac. It was a full-circle moment as Kara also sang at the bride’s 18th birthday celebration.

Ninong Robert Coyiuto Jr., Ninong Ricky Razon, Ninong Sabin Aboitiz, Ninong Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala and Peter Coyiuto

Sofia’s nephew, Jacob Coyiuto Tay, perforned with his band, Class ‘87, numbers like Sweet Child of Mine by Guns N’ Roses, Fearless by Taylor Swift, and Torete by Moonstar88. Ross and his former dance crew delivered the final song, Standing Next to You by Jungkook, as the bride is a fan of this BTS star.

Sofia’s bridesmaids looking lovely in dresses designed by Sharleen Solis of Luci: Alexandra Sy, Ciara Lao, Evanthe Chua, Erika Dee-Gonzales, Alannah Tan, Pearl Juang, Bea Coyiuto, Lexi Tiutan, Micah Cabral, and Carel Tan

Sofia and Ross obviously are perfect soulmates. “Sofia is someone I can talk to endlessly about our dreams and hopes—until she falls asleep,” Ross laughs. How did Sofia know that Ross was the one? Their first date during the pandemic was walking her dog Stella around the village. “Meeting Ross was like a breath of fresh air, a new beginning,” says Sofia. ”I just knew he was the one.”

Ross Tan posing with his groomsmen—and woman: Ryan Tan, Seraphim Villanueva, Kenric Uy, Chester Tan, Lance Tan, Kyle Tan, Paolo Pesuena, JC Genato Rance Paglin, Michelle Ho, Ray Pine, and Emil Ongchuan

So well-bred to lead purposeful lives by their parents, Ross and Sofia are most excited to work on their dreams together. A year before their wedding, the enterprising couple had set up their first business venture, Because Pets, a pet boutique in Santolan Town Plaza. Creative pursuits are coming up, but meanwhile, they will relax from work, on their honeymoon in South America.