Miss Grand International 2017: Sashes for Everyone!
The Miss Grand International 2017 sashing ceremony took place at the Pullman Saigon Center Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam last night. Last year's Miss Grand International, Ariska Putri Pertiwi from Indonesia was assisted by two of her runners-up who have arrived in Vietnam for the contest, Madison Anderson Berrios (3RU) from Puerto Rico and Michelle Leon Lopez from the United States. The ceremony in which the delegates' country sashes were off officially given to them started around 9:30pm local time. After a day of photo shoots and rehearsals for today's press conference, the organization tried to keep the ceremony intimate and short as they wanted the girls to get a good night's rest. The sashes were awarded 3 by 3 to the girls who looked excited, happy and proud.
The President of Mis Grand International, Mr. Nawat Itsaragrisil, and the Vice President of MGIO, Ms. Teresa Chaivisut, officially welcomed the girls to the contest. Mr. Itsaragrisil explained to the girls what the pageant is about. He told them that it is not just about physical beauty, but that the organization is looking for a woman with a good hard who is willing to work hard to promote the cause of Miss Grand International. One of the most important requirements of the job is that the winner should have be eager and willing to live in Thailand for a year and to travel the world on behalf of the organization.
Some tidbits that we have managed to gather so far:
* Many of the girls are still trying to adjust to the time zone and some are suffering from jet lag, as is to be expected.
* Some of the girls had very long journeys to get to the competition. Miss Bolivia, Mariem Suárez, traveled for 3 days to get to Vietnam, but she was always smiling and showing a great and positive attitude.
* Despite being tired after a long day, all the girls appeared to be having a great time. The excitement was palpable and they are eager to get to know each other and make new friends. They looked truly happy to be there at the contest.
* Some of the girls had problems with their visas, especially the ones who had to get theirs on arrival in Vietnam, but the Miss Grand International staff were super helpful and assisted the girls to ensure that all the issues were sorted out. Nigeria and Suriname will probably not be represented at the contest this year.
* Mr. Itsaragrisil spends a lot of time getting to know the girls by talking to them one by one, so that he can really get to understand them and learn more about them as people.
As in any other pageant, the fans are eager to know who the standouts were. It's still early days and everything will keep changing as the competition heats up, but Global Beauties would like to share a few more early impressions with you:
* Miss Sri Lanka, Visna Fernando, was someone who made the heads turn. She is tall, elegant and beautiful. Keep an eye on her.
* Miss India, Anukriti Gussain, continues to impress. She has a really beautiful face.
* Miss Mexico, Yoana Gutiérrez, is another delegate who made a very positive impression. She is tall and poised and also has the facial beauty to perform very well in the competition.
* Miss Paraguay, Leah Ashmore, has an amazing personality. She is always smiling, talking to people and it seems like she is loving the experience.
* Miss Argentina, Yoanna Don, stood out for her beauty and her pageant experience is clearly showing.
* We mentioned earlier that Russia and Belarus could be sisters, but we also think that Miss Thailand, Premika Pamela, resembles the outgoing queen, Ariska. She is even more impressive in real life than in pictures. What also helped her to stand out is that she is tall and she is also a very nice girl.
* Miss Australia, Kassandra Kashian, was another girl who continued to shine last night. It seems like Australia consistently sends strong contenders to this contest.
* Miss Laos, Chinnaly Norasing, was a positive surprise. She is looking great.
* Miss Belgium, Rachel Nimmegeers, is looking amazing. She was a semi-finalist in Miss Supranational two years ago, so she has the experience and she is looking better than ever before.
* Miss Venezuela, Tulia Alemán, is another one to watch. Based on beauty and charm alone, we might see her do really well in this competition.
* Other girls who made a very positive impression last night were the delegates from Bolivia (Mariem Suárez), Brazil (Caroline Venturini), Indonesia (Dea Rizkita), Peru (María José Lora) and the hometown girl, Vietnam (Nguyễn Huyền My).
Stay tuned for more updates from today's press conference as Global Beauties' Miss Grand International 2017 coverage continues.
Photos: Global Beauties / Leonardo Rodrigues