Even the heavens recognized that we were in the presence of such royalty that it cleared the sky and let the sun shine down on her. After a couple of days of rain, storms scudding over other parts of the country, cloudy skies, and fear of cancelled flights, here we all were, staring at Empress lying on the sands of Boracay, the longed-for sun dancing off her skin.
FHM’s 13th anniversary issue, we all agreed, deserved a royal treatment. And how better to do so than with Empress, child actress-turned-showbiz’s-next-big-thing-turned-A-list-star? Her name itself was fitting enough, her stature even more so, but what this young star brought to our pages cemented her stature as FHM cover girl nobility. That smolder in her eye made us forget how young she was, but her carefree smile reminded us that she was just fresh out of her teens. That toned but still alluringly curvy body laying oh-so-carelessly on the beach is FHM gold.
Empress's face on our cover: also FHM gold
But all praises aside, and at the risk of sounding cliché, Empress off-camera is just a regular gal. One who wouldn’t mind trekking a long way across powdery sand to an abandoned resort, one who’s game to join the spooky speculation that said resort could be haunted, one who chats candidly with everyone and isn’t shy to grab a bite of chocolate between takes.
Even under the pressure of shooting in a very public space (where Korean tourists seem hell-bent on getting their own DSLRs in on the action), Empress retains her regal poise and childishly sweet demeanor. Producing what is surely one of this year’s blockbuster cover shoot was just a bonus to the weekend we spent soaking up in the sun with the charmingly easygoing, effortlessly sexy Empress.
And now that summer's finally here, its time to heat things up with some vacation hijinks: take your cue from FHM's road trip to the south of Luzon, plus we've furnished you with a handy plethora of apps to take you on an epic journey of your own. Our new columnists Jahziel and Abby determine the merits of board shorts on the beach, and we've got a handful of top-shelf babes like Wendy Valdez, Jef Gaitan, and Karen Bordador lounging on the sands, ready for your perusal.