Celebrity love stories 2021: From Edu and Cherry Pie's inspiring romance reveal, to shocking and heartbreaking splits | Inquirer Entertainment

Celebrity love stories 2021: From Edu and Cherry Pie’s inspiring romance reveal, to shocking and heartbreaking splits

/ 02:54 PM December 31, 2021
20211229 Edu Manzano Cherry Pie Picache LJ Reyes and Paolo Contis

Edu Manzano, Cherry Pie Picache, LJ Reyes and Paolo Contis. Image: Instagram/@yescppicache, @lj_reyes

When 2021 began, many were still reeling from the loneliness of quarantine brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. Celebrities were no exception to dealing with this, but some might have found their affairs of the heart in 2021 to be inspiring more than they found it disheartening.

Here is a recap of the Philippines’ hottest celebrities who had eventful times in the romance department this year.


Alex Gonzaga and Mikee Morada

Starting off with a technicality: actress-vlogger Alex Gonzaga and partner Mikee Morada married November of last year but made the official announcement only in January. Gonzaga revealed through her YouTube channel that they had a “simple” wedding and explained why they kept it secret for months.


“Simple lang, kasama lang ang family at parents namin (It was simple, we were just with our family),” she said last Jan. 17.

“We want to celebrate together as a family muna. ‘Yung timing din, at tsaka alam namin na may pandemic (We also considered the timing, we know there is a pandemic), so we just wanted to keep it to ourselves for a little while to celebrate.”

Benj Manalo and Lovely Abella

A couple that did not waste any time sharing news of their wedding is “Ang Probinsyano” actor Benj Manalo and his long-time girlfriend Lovely Abella, who married last Jan. 23. The two only had 10 days to plan their ceremony, which is unusual given the nature of other celebrity nuptials, as revealed by wedding organizer Maxine Covar Events also on the same day.


Dionne Monsanto and Ryan Stalder

In March, PBB alum Dionne Monsanto wed her friend-turned-boyfriend Ryan Stalder. While they probably had more days to plan their wedding, they still managed to make an unusual but unique choice: they celebrated at the back of a Volkswagen, which was their bridal car.

Luis Manzano and Jessy Mendiola

Another longtime showbiz couple, actors Luis Manzano and Jessy Mendiola, also tied the knot this year after getting engaged in December of 2020. The actress proudly made the announcement on her Instagram page last April, where she stated three simple words: “Officially Mrs. Manzano.”

Rico Blanco and Maris Racal

Maris Racal and rock icon Rico Blanco took people by surprise after the former shared a duet of Aqualung’s “Brighter Than Sunshine” for Blanco’s birthday on her Instagram page last March. She confirmed that she was dating the musician over 20 years her senior in an “Maalaala Mo Kaya” online press conference in May.

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A post shared by Maris Racal (@mariesteller)

Rabiya Mateo and Neil Salvacion

It was not all sunshine and daisies during May, though. Former Miss Universe Philippines Rabiya Mateo confessed that she was in the middle of a “complicated” situation with her non-showbiz boyfriend Neil Salvacion during the same month.

“I still try to contact him but we need to have this space together as of the moment,” she told Boy Abunda in an interview with the TV host on his YouTube channel, May 30. Salvacion confirmed their breakup via his Instagram stories on June 4.

Kylie Padilla and Aljur Abrenica

By the middle of the year, another split, this time more controversial, took place: Kylie Padilla and Aljur Abrenica broke up, as first confirmed by Kylie’s father, former action star Robin Padilla.

Robin spoke up about the issue with talent manager Ogie Diaz, in Diaz’s YouTube channel last July. Robin stated that the separation was due to a third party.

Kylie eventually clarified the matter, saying that there is no issue between her and Abrenica anymore, and that they have been separated since April, as per her Twitter page on Oct. 1.

Wilma Doesnt and Gerick Parin

The tone of showbiz love lives turned light when actress Wilma Doesnt announced that she was engaged to her boyfriend Gerick Parin, via her Instagram page on July 12. Netizens, while well-meaning, could not help but point out the comedian’s “consistent” new name—Wilma Doesnt Parin.

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A post shared by Wilma Dassent (@doesntwilma)

Angel Locsin and Neil Arce

August opened beautifully for showbiz romances as actress Angel Locsin and film producer Neil Arce also tied the knot this year through an intimate civil wedding, much to the surprise of fans and followers.

The two revealed that they “decided not to wait” anymore, attaching photos of their wedding at the end of a video on The Angel and Neil YouTube channel that month.

Bea Alonzo and Dominique Roque

Another top showbiz story this year was actress Bea Alonzo finding love again, after a controversial breakup with Gerald Anderson back in 2019, supposedly caused by fellow actress Julia Barretto.

Alonzo confirmed by August that she had moved on with actor Dominique Roque. The actress happily revealed that her relationship with him came out naturally, without her planning or holding herself back too much.

“My safe haven,” she called Roque in a post on her Instagram page last November.

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A post shared by bea alonzo (@beaalonzo)

Kris Aquino and Mel Senen Sarmiento

A couple of days after Alonzo revealed that she has pieced her heart back together, another former Kapamilya joined in on the love train.

Kris Aquino, who had been teasing fans of a special person in her life since April, finally made public her relationship with former secretary of Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), Mel Senen Sarmiento.

“He makes me feel taken care of, secure, and SAFE,” Kris said in a birthday greeting to Mel on her Instagram page. “So he is deserving of this birthday greeting that all of you are now seeing (care bears na kung anong iisipin ninyo) BECAUSE for me he is special.”

Juliana Palermo and Joel Crabtree

Former actress Juliana Palermo and her boyfriend Joel Crabtree were last to seal their love in August. The two tied the knot in a small Mexican beach wedding on the 31st. Palermo’s sons were in attendance.

LJ Reyes and Paolo Contis

By the time the “-ber” months came around, the chill in the air seemed to have changed the hearts of showbiz personalities too — specifically LJ Reyes’ and Paolo Contis’— who had one of the biggest breakups this year.

“Tito Boy, kasi matagal ko nang nararamdaman na parang nakahiwalay na siya sa amin,” the actress explained in an exclusive interview with Boy Abunda last September. While she said no third party was involved, many fans speculated that actress Yen Santos, who was Contis’ costar in “A Faraway Land” was the reason for the separation.

Mark Herras and Nicole Donesa

Reyes’ fellow “Starstruck” alum Mark Herras had better chances with love this year as he married his girlfriend Nicole Donesa in a civil ceremony last September. They married on Mother Mary’s birthday, with Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte presiding over the affair.

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A post shared by @herrasmarkangeloofficial

JC de Vera and Rikkah Cruz

Actor JC de Vera also had a civil ceremony with non-showbiz girlfriend Rikkah Cruz three years ago. However, the two decided to go big in a beautiful “celestial-themed” church wedding last Sept. 21. The photos were revealed first by Nice Print Photography through its Instagram page on the same day.

Kris Bernal and Perry Choi

Another showbiz and non-showbiz tandem got married last September, notably Kris Bernal and businessman Perry Choi. Bernal looked radiant in her plunging Mak Tumang gown while her husband-to-be wore a gray suit. Their wedding photos were also first released by Nice Print Photography through its Instagram page on the day of their wedding, Sept. 25.

Maggie Wilson and Victor Consunji

Beauty queen Maggie Wilson‘s relationship with businessman Victor Consunji, in contrast, went south this year. She announced their separation after 11 years of marriage through her Instagram page last Sept. 27. Wilson later stressed that she did not have an affair, apparently alleged by some as the cause of their split.

Heaven Peralejo and Kiko Estrada

Heartbreak did not spare the world of younger stars as Heaven Peralejo confirmed that she and actor Kiko Estrada have broken up, as per her YouTube channel last Oct. 25.

“I don’t need any relationship. I just need my friends and I just need me. I’m really happy right now, super happy,” she proudly said.

Carla Abellana and Tom Rodriguez

Longtime couple and actors Carla Abellana and Tom Rodriguez were one of the lucky celebrity couples this year, marrying last Oct. 27. Abellana wore a strapless Monique Lhuillier gown while Rodriguez sported a Francis Libiran suit in the ceremony, as seen in photography group Team Pat Dy’s Instagram page that same day.

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A post shared by Team Pat Dy (@teampatdy)

Ellen Adarna and Derek Ramsay

A whirlwind romance came to fruition in a surprise marriage ceremony from sultry actress Ellen Adarna and actor Derek Ramsay. The two married in a dreamy wedding at Rancho Bernardo Luxury Villas and Resort last Nov. 11.

Adarna’s son with actor John Lloyd Cruz, Elias, was in attendance, as well as Derek Ramsay’s son Austin.

Alodia Gosiengfiao and Wil Dasovich

A few days after the luxurious Adarna/Ramsay wedding came sad news from cosplay star Alodia Gosiengfiao, who confirmed that she and vlogger Wil Dasovich have called it quits, after two years of being a couple.

“We tried to work things out many times but some things are not meant to be. I hope you respect our privacy during this time in our lives,” she said on her Facebook page on Nov. 14.

Janine Gutierrez and Rayver Cruz

Meanwhile, a high-profile celebrity breakup this year involved actors Janine Gutierrez and Rayver Cruz. Rumors have been circulating as early as Nov. 15.

While the two have yet to make any public announcement about their separation, Gutierrez alluded to it after being asked “Pinagpalit ka ba?” in an episode of “It’s Showtime” last Dec. 11.

Jennylyn Mercado and Dennis Trillo

Marriage was in the books for another longtime celebrity couple Jennylyn Mercado and Dennis Trillo this year, who shared pictures of their civil ceremony last November.

They released their official wedding video through Mercado’s YouTube channel on Nov. 20. She wore a white suit from designer Vania Romoff while Trillo donned another white suit from designer Edwin Tan. Pictures of the affair were shared through photographer Pat Dy on her official Instagram page also on Nov. 20.

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A post shared by Pat Dy (@patdy11)

Paolo Contis and Yen Santos

Contis makes the list again, this time for starting a new flame with costar Yen Santos, who was rumored to be the third party in his breakup with LJ Reyes this year.

The rumors were so widespread that Santos became one of the most Google-searched personalities in the country for 2021.

Contis and Santos appeared to have spent time together on the night of the actress’ birthday in November, based on their Instagram stories.

Paolo Contis IG story

Image: Instagram/@paolo_contis

Yen Santos IG story

Image: Instagram/@ysantos

Beatrice Luigi Gomez and Kate Jagdon

For the first openly gay Miss Universe Philippines Beatrice Luigi Gomez and long-time girlfriend Kate Jagdon, romance was not meant to last.

Jagdon confirmed their separation on her Instagram Stories last November. She said that she wished Bea luck in her journey while she was personally ready to “go on.”

Bea Gomez Kate Jagdon IG story

Image: Instagram/@kate_jagdon

Edu Manzano and Cherry Pie Picache

Ending on a lighter and giddy note, veteran actors Edu Manzano and Cherry Pie Picache made their relationship official later this year, amid speculations that they had been dating.

Manzano revealed the truth only through a series of text messages with broadcaster Cheryl Cosim on “One Balita Pilipinas” last November. The two have since proudly shown public displays of affection, spending Christmas together and revealing that they actually dated 20 years ago.

Celebrity couples have stood firm and fallen flat throughout the test of time. This year was no different — there were couples who had their fair shares of failed romances, but also couples who bravely took marital vows or found their way back to love again. So cheers to love, showbiz, and our showbiz idols in love come 2022! JB


Cherry Pie Picache, Edu Manzano reveal they used to date 20 years ago

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TAGS: Angel Locsin, Bea Alonzo, Cherry Pie Picache, Edu Manzano, LJ Reyes
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