Filipino American couple Angelica and Robin San Felipe held their wedding reception at their beloved Jollibee in San Francisco.
Thousands of miles away from the Philippines, the iconic, red-and-yellow smiling Jollibee still brings love together.
Jollibee, known for its hand-breaded fried chicken and bee mascot, is the largest fast-food chain brand in the Philippines, but two weeks ago, one location became the San Felipes’ wedding reception. The couple celebrated at the Jollibee in Daly City on Feb. 2 (2/2/22), a date they had specifically chosen because “if you add it up, it’s 8 or infinity.”
They newlyweds first met in college when they both attended Ateneo de Manila University in Quezon City, Philippines. While they were able to form a casual “Hi/Hello” friendship through one of their school’s organizations, they admitted that there was not much of a relationship until they reconnected in California.
Angelica moved to Los Angeles following her mother’s petition in 2012, and a year later, Robin moved to San Francisco to join his family. Their love story soon began; reconnected friends grew into best friends who constantly met up at Jollibee.
The two 30-year-old spicy Chickenjoy fans have been together for two years and married for two weeks now.
A daily dose of Asian America's essential stories, in under 5 minutes.
Get our collection of Asian America's most essential stories to your inbox daily for free.
Unsure? Check out our Newsletter Archive.
Their favorite fast-food restaurant is also known for its “Kwentong Jollibee” short films that explore the themes of love. One of the restaurant chain’s recent films, “Kwentong Jollibee Valentine Series 2022: 600 DAYS,” was released to its official YouTube channel on Feb. 9 and has garnered over 10 million views, as of this writing.
The short films inspired Angelica and Robin to create a title for their own love story, “Kwentong Jollibee: Mga Bu,” which translates to “Our Jollibee Story: The Bu’s.” The couple explained to NextShark that “Bu” is the name they call each other, and “The Bu’s” is how their friends refer to them. “Jollibee holds a special place in our hearts,” Robin said. “It’s a special spot for us because there were multiple conversations, hours of laughter, sometimes we’d cry because of certain events but pretty much everything happened in that location.”
“At Jollibee, I think we realized what we really want. What we like and what we don’t like, and it led us to where we are now,” Angelica added.
During their engagement session, they had the daring idea to have their wedding reception at Jollibee. Their celebration then turned to a photoshoot with their photographer Erwin Portilla.
“Jollibee is our happy place. It was effortless to show our joy while being photographed,” Angelica shared.
“Because of those moments we had. Eating Chickenjoy, sharing that crispy part, dividing a peach mango pie… those moments made us realize that we are perfect for each other,” Robin said. “That made us realize, ‘Hey, you’re the rice to my Chickenjoy.’”
While a Jollibee love story may be common in the Philippines, a Jollibee love story in America is unheard of. The couple believes that the Filipino restaurant will always be a special and nostalgic place they can come home to. If you have plans on having an elopement wedding with your special someone real soon as well, you can trust the renowned names in the industry.
“If you’re from California and you grew up with In-N-Out, imagine your first bite of that burger. Did it trigger a tasteful memory? ‘Cause that’s what we felt when we had that first bite of Jollibee Chickenjoy smothered with gravy and served with steaming hot rice,” Angelica explained. “It triggers like a memory as a kid and represents our childhood.”
“What makes it special is [that] Jollibee is a piece of our home, the Philippines, that we can come to whenever we crave something from our country,” she added.
All Images via Erwin Portilla, Angelica San Felipe and Robin San Felipe