Valentine’s at ABS-CBN Ball 2023: Controversial, viral couples walk red carpet together

From left: Catriona Gray and Sam Milby; Donny Pangilinan and Belle Mariano

MANILA, Philippines — ABS-CBN held its first ball after the COVID-19 pandemic tonight in Makati Shangri-La Hotel, one of the venues of the media network’s past soirees, including Star Magic Ball.

The stars mixed and matched local and international designers and brands in their ensembles. Black, white and gold were among the favorites in red carpet looks, complementing this year’s black-tie dress code. 

In keeping with the ball’s theme, “Forever Grateful,” many expressed their gratitude for still having projects and being able to walk the red carpet again despite challenges such as the pandemic and the ABS-CBN shutdown. 

Majority of the stars who walked the red carpet were ABS-CBN artists, and among them was Dolly de Leon, the first Filipino actor to be nominated for the Golden Globe Awards and the BAFTAs, coming from the success of her Star Cinema blockbuster hit “A Very Good Girl” with Kathryn Bernardo.

Besides Dolly, many couples, such as the engaged Sam Milby and Catriona Gray, as well as trending pairs Darren Espanto and Cassy Legaspo, and KD Estrada and Alexa Ilacad, made their ABS-CBN Ball red carpet debut alongside controversial ones such as Vice Ganda and Ion Perez, Gerald Anderson and Julia Barretto, Maris Racal and Rico Blanco, and Chie Filomeno and Jake Cuenca.


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Here are more of them who lent a piece of Valentine’s at the ball that was held close to Christmas season:

Julia Barretto and Gerald Anderson; Jericho Rosales and Kim Jones Toledo


Vivoree Esclito and Brent Manalo; Darren Espanto and Cassy Legaspi Toledo, Deni Bernardo

KDLex (KD Estrada and Alexa Ilacad) and FranSeth (Francine Diaz and Seth Fedelin) Toledo

Rico Blanco and Maris Racal; Chie Filomeno and Jake Cuenca Toledo