The 65th Miss Universe pageant is finally here (65th because it is no longer called by year, due to the shift of the pageant’s date, two times in three years now).  The arrival of the first contestant, Carolyn Carter of the U.S. Virgin Islands in Manila caused quite a commotion at Ninoy Aquino airport, an entree of what can be expected for this year’s pageant.

Following Carter’ entry into the country, we learned about the arrival of Soyini Fraser, Miss Guyana, who competed -with no success- in the Miss Grand International competition held in Bangkok in 2015.  The two beauties have been getting a lot of local press, with journalists eager to get every piece of information out to the public.

We have also learned that the last contestant to arrive will be none other than one of the biggest favorites, Miss Colombia, Andrea Tovar, who will be landing in Manila on the evening of January 14th, when some of the first events will already be taking place.

This edition of Miss Universe is very important to fans and followers due to many factors:  The return of the competition to pageant-crazy Philippines; the return of Steve Harvey, who will have all the eyes of the world set on him when the name of the next Miss Universe is announced. Will he get it right this time? How will Filipinos welcome him?

There has been talks about a change in the format of Miss Universe, which will value more delegates with TV-worthy background stories, and those with social media advantage with millions of followers, something that translates into revenue for the brand.  There was also a change in the rules: starting this edition, delegates can be as old as 28 years of age.

The Favorites

We already mentioned the fabulous Miss Colombia (Andrea Tovar, 23) who is coming willing to set things right, to take -according to Colombian fans- what was taken from them last year (referring to Harvey’s mishap when Ariadna Gutierrez received full crown, sash and a 2-minute victory walk before having to return her title).  Tovar stands an impressive 1.80 m in height and comes from Quibdo (department of Choco).  She is a friend of the environment and one of her dreams is to create an innovative foundation that uses raw materials from the Pacific region to transform Colombian products.

Following her is Miss Australia (Caris Tiivel), a gorgeous painter and model from Perth who works with children in mentorship programs.  The 1.79 m stunner wants to become the 3rd Miss Universe titleholder from Australia, after Kerry Anne Wells (1972) and Jennifer Hawkins (2004).

Then we have the host contestant, a 26-year old model and designer from Quezon City: Maxine Medina.  She will try to win back-to-back titles for the Philippines, a task that might not be hard to achieve due to her excellent preparation.  Medina has shown eloquence, confidence and drive; she is certainly more than ready to take on the Miss Universe crown.

Canada‘s Siera Bearchell is also planning to walk away with the Miss Universe crown on her head; a pageant veteran with excellent stage presence and interview skills, she hails from Saskatchewan and produces her own line of clothing. In Miss Supranational 2015, she placed 2nd.

And of course we cannot ignore Mariam Habach, a beauty of Syrian-Italian descent representing the mecca of the beauty queens, Venezuela.  The 20-year old model from El Tocuyo (Lara) stands at a whooping 1.83 m in height.  With undeniable elegance and a great figure, she is a sure bet among the competition’s top spots.

There are also a group of beauties who could surprise everyone on January 29th and are prepared to take the crown:  Brazil‘s Raissa Santana, France‘s Iris Mittenaere, Indonesia, 1.83 Kesia Warouw; Panama‘s Keity Mendieta, Iceland‘s Hildur Maria, Russia;s Yuliana Korolkova, Barbados‘ Shannon Harris, USA‘s Deshauna Barber; Slovak Republic‘s Zuzana Kollarova and Thailand‘s Chalita Suansane.

Of course, these are pre-arrival impressions which are expected to change once the competition starts taking place. Too see how GB rates all candidates based on pre-arrival impressions, visit our Instagram account: @officialglobalbeauties

The Program

The contestants will be arriving in the country during the next few days, as January 14th marks the official start of the pageant.

Little information has been disclosed about the Presentation Show, where all 85 delegates will compete in Swimsuits and Evening Gowns. As for the moment it has been disclosed that the event will be held on Friday, January 27th at the Mall of Asia Arena with an exclusive live broadcast by TV5 and a live webcast via, at 7:00 am EST, 8:00 pm local Manila time.  There has not been an announcement regarding tickets for this event, which is the second most important after the live coronation gala.

It was also learned that MAC Cosmetics will be the official make-up sponsor of the 65th Miss Universe, starring the best of the best of local Filipino make-up artists.

7 interesting facts´about this year´s Miss Universe Pageant

1- It is the third time the Philippines will host Miss Universe. The first was back in 1974, Spain won. Twenty years later, it happened again, and India won its first Miss Universe title.

2- Back in 1974 and 1994 internet did not exist. The Philippines, a country passionate about beauty pageants, has the most active followers on social medias. It will be interesting to observe how the will behave with so much interactivity nowadays!

3- European countries, once powerhouses in Miss Universe, have been treated as “supporting roles” in Miss Universe in the last 25 years. After Norway won the title in 1990, only Russia did it again for the Old Continent in 2002, but the winner was dethroned soon after. There´s a lot of expectation on the spectacular Miss France, who emerged from the best national pageant in Europe and could take gold in the Philippines. Can she do it?

4- However, there are fans who expect a re-match of Colombia X Philippines in the final moments of the final telecast. Steve Harvey, if it happens, please pay close attention to what you do!! You may want to go back home in one piece…

5- One thing most Miss Universe delegates from 1974 and 1994 remember about their experience is the amazing hospitality of the people of the Philippines! For sure all candidates will have the best memories from their stay in this beautiful country.

6- If Europe has been ignored for nearly 30 years, the American continent has 12 titles since the year 2000! Asia follows it with 3 winners, Africa has 1 and Oceania 1. Europe won it once, in 2002, but lost it. Will the Americas do it again?

7- 2016 will be officially over in the “pageant world” after the conclusion of a late Miss Universe. The results will show if the Philippines can end the year with the number 1 position in GB´s Grand Slam Ranking. It will be the first time it happens ever! The dispute is between Philippines and Venezuela, so watch out for these two stunners. Universe 2016NewsGrand Slam,Miss Universe,Philippines
The 65th Miss Universe pageant is finally here (65th because it is no longer called by year, due to the shift of the pageant's date, two times in three years now).  The arrival of the first contestant, Carolyn Carter of the U.S. Virgin Islands in Manila caused quite a...