MANILA, Philippines – On Sunday, April 17, Nicole Cordoves found herself in the spotlight as she was crowned Binibining Pilipinas Grand International, earning her the right to represent the Philippines in the 4th Miss Grand International pageant in Las Vegas, USA this coming October.
Although the pageant is still months away, Nicole is definitely a candidate to watch out for in the pageant. Let’s get to know more about the 24-year-old lady from Manila.
1. She was Miss Chinatown 2014. Nicole is not new to pageants, as she won the Miss Chinatown competition back in 2014. She has Filipino-Chinese ancestry.
This is truly by far the most beautiful moment of my life that i will cherish forever. It is amazing how I asked for so little from God but He gave me so much more than I could ever ask for! Choosing to join Ms. Chinatown was a real tug-of-war life decision for me and I thank my family who inspired me and reminded me of my original dreams which lead me today to who I really am. Thank you.
2. She is the second Binibini title-holder to compete in Miss Grand International. The pageant itself is young, as its inaugural edition was in 2013. Nicole’s win as Bb Pilipinas Grand International makes her only the second representative from Bb Pilipinas in the competition.
Last year, Bb Pilipinas Tourism 2014 Parul Shah competed in Miss Grand International, where she placed 3rd runner-up.
In 2013 and 2014, two ladies represented the Philippines in the competition: Annalie Forbes and Kimberly Anastasia Karlsson. Bb Pilipinas only acquired the franchise rights to the pageant in 2015.
3. She works as a speech writer for the Department of Finance. In an interview last March 29 after the press presentation, Nicole shared with Rappler that she works in public service.
“I currently work at the Department of Finance as the speech writer of Secretary Cesar Purisima, [but] I’m on leave right now with my boss’ blessing,” she said. “I practically live my life in service that’s when I realized na (that) I want this job, I want this responsibility.”
“As [Miss Universe 2015] Pia Wurtzbach said, it’s both an honor and responsibility. I want it to be my job. It will be my dream job to represent the Philippines internationally.”
4. She actively works with an organization dedicated to women and children. Aside from working in the Department of Finance, Nicole is also involved with Iris Philippines, a missionary/evangelistic organization which allows her to interact with and teach women and children in Tondo.
Among the activities she has done with the group include taking the kids to the zoo and giving the women makeovers.
“I like want to broaden their world hindi lang yung (not just the) corners and sidewalks of Tondo yung alam nila (that they know),” Nicole said during the Binibining Pilipinas: Road to the Crown primer. “I also made a project na (that’s) for the women of Tondo like yung mga makeover sa nanay (makeovers for mommies).”
According to Gel Lopez, one of Nicole’s supporters, Nicole also took an immersion while in college, experiencing life among the urban poor as part of her research. She is a graduate of AB Economics minor in Development Management from the Ateneo de Manila University.
5. She is friends with Miss Universe 2013 3rd runner-up Ara Arida and Miss Globe 2015 Ann Colis. When asked which beauty queen she looks up to as an inspiration, Nicole said there are many, but specifically mentioned her friends, Ara and Ann.
“I look up to a lot – my queen friends like Ann Colis, Ara Arida. Knowing that they have this really good educational background, just to have these really smart and beautiful women join these pageants, there’s a certain depth to that,” she said.
Aside from Ara and Ann, Nicole counts Miss Universe Philippines 2016 Maxine Medina among her friends.
Painted the town today at the Habitat for Humanity, Navotas! A lot of the people who were relocated here were victims of typhoons. I can only imagine the weight lifted off their shoulders with the affordable housing Habitat for Humanity provides and the community it aims to build. I can't wait to see the future developments of the communities!
6. Nicole loves adventure – and she writes about them. Nicole documents her travels on her blog. Some of the trips she has written about include her outreach dental mission education in Isla Mababoy in Masbate, Mt. Pico de Loro, and more.
7. Her terno is inspired by her Filipino-Chinese ancestry. On Instagram, Nicole thanked designer Mak Tumang, who made her Filipino terno during the Bb Pilipinas fashion show: “Thank you, [Mak Tumang] for my national costume! This porcelain-inspired terno that precisely portrays my Filipino-Chinese heritage. The moment I saw it, I knew it was perfect for me.”
She also shared that she had some assistance from her good friend, Miss Globe 2015 Ann Colis: “Thank you [Ann Colis] for bringing me to Sir Mak’s showroom that fateful day!”
8. She has a group of solid fans known as Cordobesties. Like the rest of the queens, Nicole has her own group of supporters known as the Cordobesties, however, they now call themselves “GRANDCordoBESTIES.”
Following her win, Nicole wrote on Facebook, “My heart overflows with joy to be bestowed with the honor of representing the 102 million Filipinos who drown us with love and support.
“Before that fateful night, I used to have to rehearse saying ‘Manila.’ Today, I can finally say: Nicole Cordoves, 24, ‘Philippines!'”
More Binibining Pilipinas 2016 on Rappler:
- Maxine Medina crowned Miss Universe Philippines 2016
- FULL LIST: Winners, Bb Pilipinas 2016 coronation night
- Photo recap: Highlights, Bb Pilipinas 2016 coronation night
- WATCH: Pia Wurtzbach’s emotional speech at Bb Pilipinas 2016 coronation
- WATCH: Pia Wurtzbach’s farewell walk at Binibining Pilipinas 2016
- WATCH: Miss Universe PH 2016 Maxine Medina’s Bb Pilipinas Q&A
- WATCH: The moment Maxine Medina became Miss Universe Philippines 2016
- WATCH: Bb Pilipinas 2016 evening gown competition at coronation night
- WATCH: Bb Pilipinas 2016 swimsuit competition at coronation night
- IN PHOTOS: Stars at Binibining Pilipinas 2016
Predictions and live blog:
- Bb Pilipinas 2016 predictions: Who will follow Pia Wurtzbach?
- LIVE UPDATES: Bb Pilipinas 2016 coronation night
- Kylie Verzosa tops Rappler poll on Binibining Pilipinas 2016
Leading up to coronation night:
- IN PHOTOS: 40 Bb Pilipinas 2016 candidates walk the runway at press presentation
- IN PHOTOS: Bb Pilipinas 2016 official swimsuit photos
- IN PHOTOS: Bb Pilipinas talent show 2016
- IN PHOTOS: Bb Pilipinas 2016 national costume competition
- IN PHOTOS: Bb Pilipinas 2016 candidates in casual wear fashion show
- IN PHOTOS: Bb Pilipinas 2016 Parade of Beauties
Get to know the ladies:
- 8 fun facts: Bb Pilipinas International 2016 Kylie Verzosa
- 9 fun facts: Miss Universe Philippines 2016 Maxine Medina
- IN PHOTOS: Meet the candidates of Binibining Pilipinas 2016
- FULL LIST: Binibining Pilipinas 2016 candidates
- Pia Wurtzbach’s advice for Bb Pilipinas 2016 candidates
- WATCH: Pia Wurtzbach’s sassy assessment of Bb Pilipinas 2016 hopefuls
- WATCH: ‘Star-struck’ Pia Wurtzbach meets Manny Pacquiao
- Pia Wurtzbach confirms she’s dating Dr. Mike, shares more details
- WATCH: Pia Wurtzbach shares story behind famous ‘Ako bahala, babawi tayo sa Miss U’ tweet
- Nichole Manalo on her Bb Pilipinas Globe 2016 crown
- Beauty queens Bianca, Kate Manalo support younger sister’s 2nd Bb Pilipinas bid
- Search for Binibining Pilipinas 2016 begins