Wanderlust | Meaningful conversations, sweet connections in AirAsia’s Red Talks

AFTER last year’s successful airing of the first season of the Red Talks webisodes, AirAsia held an exclusive media screening of the pilot episode of its second season last February 22 at the Twilight Roofdeck Lounge of Bai Hotel in Mandaue City, Cebu.

THE PHILIPPINES AirAsia team

THE PHILIPPINES AirAsia team

Hosted by award-winning TV host and producer Daphne Oseña-Paez, the online series, available on AirAsia’s official social media accounts, feature the different facets of travel, lifestyle and personalities in the industry, exciting ASEAN destinations and exemplary communities.

“This season we’re pushing it a bit further in making a bigger difference and making stronger and deeper connections, not just with people, but also with the food, culture and character of the different places that we’re going to visit,” Paez hinted.

AirAsia team with Red Talk guests and Davao media

AIRASIA team with Red Talk guests and Davao media

With the new connections and partners in the series’ latest season, Paez confessed that she’s “excited to see AirAsia pushing the media and content this far.” Davao City gets the spotlight in Red Talks’ first episode.

“AirAsia is a social and an innovative brand. We embrace social media not only to engage our millions of followers but also to inspire and connect with our guests. With Red Talks, we are aiming to have meaningful connections by bringing back the era of talk TV and magazine shows,” said Philippines AirAsia CEO Capt. Dexter M. Comendador.

HOST Daphe Osena-Paez with Chef JP during their shoot in Malagos

HOST Daphe Osena-Paez with Chef JP during their shoot in Malagos

The only difference today, Comendador expounded, is that they deliver the content to a wider online audience using a refreshing and effective approach to the platform.

Maan Hontiveros, who rose from entertainment TV host to chairperson of the Philippine subsidiary of the world’s most awarded low cost carrier for 9 consecutive years (2009 to 2017) running by Skytrax, also extolled the use of new media in connecting with their audience.

PHILIPPINES AirAsia chair Maan Hontiveros

PHILIPPINES AirAsia chair Maan Hontiveros

“During my era, we have these big ENG (electronic news gathering) cameras and 16 mm film that needed to be developed and edited. It took time to get a segment out. But now, cameras are so small and you have all the tools,” she said.

Hontiveros used to co-host a glossy lifestyle TV show “Ms. Ellaneous” Tina Revilla and former Miss International runner-up Yogi Dominguez in the mid-70s. “I was in a segment called ‘On the Beat’, which took me to places around the country and the world. It’s similar to what we are doing now but on a totally different medium,” she added.

PHILIPPINES AirAsia CEO Capt. Dexter M. Comendador

PHILIPPINES AirAsia CEO Capt. Dexter M. Comendador

While she considers herself a “techno dinosaur,” she staunchly supports and rallies on the importance using new media. “When (AirAsia group founder and CEO) Tony Fernandes invited me to join him turnaround a company that’s already been in receivership, he reminded me that there’s nothing we can’t learn,” Hontiveros shared.

The two pillars of AirAsia used to work together for Warner Music from the late 90s to the early 2000s.

AirAsia foundation executive director Yap Mun Ching also joined the program and disclosed their chores in being the philanthropic arm of the airline.

“In the foundation, we use our business skills to help social enterprises do better business. And it’s not just about funding – AirAsia has an extensive network and we have very powerful distribution, marketing and social media channels. It’s really about how we make use of our business networks to support these social enterprises beyond money,” she shared.

Meanwhile, AirAsia head of ancillary business Karlo Sanchez bared on how they were able to help SMEs (micro, small and medium-sized enterprises) with their inflight fares for the airline’s Santan menu.

RED Talks hosts with guests Rex Puentespina and Chef JP Anglo

RED Talks hosts with guests Rex Puentespina and Chef JP Anglo

“As an ASEAN airline, we go the influences where the flavors are.  We go through testing and make sure it’s affordable to our passengers. Most importantly, we source our ingredients from different SMEs. It’s our way of giving back,” Sanchez said.

One of the highlights of the evening was the big reveal of the chocolate-inspired fare that celebrity chef JP Anglo concocted, which AirAsia passengers can start to enjoy come April.

“When you travel, your mind, your palate gets opened – so, you’re absorbing everything. In flight, food makes you want to look forward to having that certain meal again while making you excited to reach your destination,” said the entrepreneurial chef.

Speaking of chocolates, the major ingredient of the new fare that Chef JP made for AirAsia comes the cacao farms of Malagos in Davao City’s Baguio District.

“It’s the perfect way of showing AirAsia passengers unique Philippine experiences and destinations while at the same showcasing the beauty of nature by using world class local ingredients,” said chocolate maker Rex Victor Puentespina, head of sales and marketing of Malagos Agri-Ventures Corporation.

According to Puentespina, AirAsia greatly places the SMEs in the spotlight while concurrently promoting inclusive growth and sustainability. “For a low cost airline, AirAsia is going out of their way in using high quality ingredients to be served in their inflight meals for passengers to enjoy. For that, we are truly thankful for AirAsia in helping us promote Philippine chocolates,” he added.

Posted in Lifestyle