The Philippines is getting ready to host their first metaverse fashion gala in a partnership between internationally renowned fashion designer Michael Cinco and the three-day blockchain technology conference, Philippines Blockchain Week (PBW).
Tickets are on sale now for the exclusive fashion show, taking place on September 18 at the Marriott Grand Ballroom, in Manila’s Newport World Resorts. Fashionista attendees will enjoy pre-show cocktails and a five-course epicurean dinner, while enjoying a runway showcase of Cinco signature pieces. There will be both physical and virtual catwalks, with avatars of the models showing off the same outfits in the Metaverse. Collectors will be able to purchase their favorite pieces in a limited pre-sale, which also come with both the physical gowns and digital collectibles as a special edition bonus.
PBW will open their floodgates to thousands of people the following day at the same venue, with the event lasting from September 19-21. Conference-goers will also be treated to Cinco’s iconic designs, with a wide range of outfits exhibited all over the PBW convention hall.
Michael Cinco’s fashion designs have been worn by royalty of many nations and an exhaustive list of celebrities, ranging from Beyonce and Rhianna to Steve Aoki, Mila Kunis and Kylie Minogue. He launched his eponymous fashion line in 2003, and got his big break in Hollywood when Lady Gaga approached him for a gown to wear at her Fame perfume launch. His show-stopping style was particularly highlighted when Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach wore a Cinco-designed gown for her final walk.
Cinco, who is from the Philippines and based in Dubai, said that he was inspired to host a metaverse gala because the fashion industry is always focused on redefining barriers, and the barrier between the physical and digital worlds represents the next big boundary to cross. He has also previously expressed a strong desire to remain relevant in order to promote his brand to the next generation.
PBW convener Chezka Gonzales expanded on the notion of pushing the envelope, explaining how the Cinco partnership is providing yet another great example of how people’s professional and personal lives are experiencing change through blockchain technology. Cinco joins a wide range of top global creative professionals to embrace blockchain in expressing their art.
Gonzales said that in addition to Cinco’s fashion, this year’s PBW event will largely spotlight the gaming industry. She said that she believes gaming is the primary sector at the forefront of mainstream adoption of blockchain technology, and is what most excites the local Filipino community.
PBW, which launched in 2022, has gained the support of state-backed agencies this year as the Philippines government looks to integrate breakthrough technologies into every aspect of daily life. The Philippines occupies a unique position in the global digital sector, with the highest internet and NFT penetration rate of a digital population.
The metaverse fashion gala at this year’s conference will not only be a for-profit event—part of the proceeds will be donated to two charities. An international youth-empowerment organization called the Global Reskilling Movement will receive half of the funds raised, with the other half going to the World Wildlife Fund to help them protect endangered species.