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IN PHOTOS: Miss World Philippines 2017 charity gala

Voltaire E. Tayag
IN PHOTOS: Miss World Philippines 2017 charity gala

Alecs Ongcal

The Miss World Philippines Organization is able to raise funds for the Jose Reyes Memorial Medical Center, as 6 ladies perform during the event

MANILA, Philippines – On Thursday, August 31, the Miss World Philippines (MWP) Organization hosted a charity gala at the ballroom of the New World Hotel in Makati City.

The Miss World organization prides itself on its Beauty with a Purpose advocacy, which raises money and works with humanitarian causes across the globe.

The main beneficiary of this gala is the Jose Reyes Memorial Medical Center located in Santa Cruz, Manila. Arnold Vegafria, MWP national director, hopes their efforts will be able to provide better facilities and give the best medical attention to those in need.

The new MWP Organization really knows how to throw a party. First, they got singer and TV host Karylle to host the event. She wore a beautiful white, boatneck, fully beaded gown by Cara Kho. Second, the beauty queen guest list included:

  • Miss World 2013, Megan Young
  • Miss World 2011 1st Princess, Gwen Ruais
  • Miss World Philippines 2012, Queenierich Rehman
  • Miss World Philippines 2014, Valerie Weigmann
  • Miss World Philippines 2015, Hillarie Parungao

Each of their evening gowns during their respective Miss World pageants were on display at the foyer of the ballroom alongside some other memorabilias. Most importantly, their kind spirits and genuine personalities are a reminder that their beauty is far more than skin deep.

Aside from aiding in a worthy cause, the gala provided a glittering venue for the 6 pre-selected Miss World Philippines candidates to showcase their talents.

Kudos to the MWP Organization sparing the audience and the contestants of what might have been embarassing moments which are very common in many beauty pageant talent programs. This was an elite group of performers.

Candidate #31 Jeanyfer Ozbot came out in a beautiful ethnic costume to perform a traditional dance which involved standing on a stack of dinner plates. She showed elegance and graceful movements as there were no broken plates at the end of her routine.

Candidate #27 Ella Lubag was in a nude tulle, off shoulder mermaid gown with red applique and embroidery on the bodice by Chico Estiva. Her beautifully sculpted cheekbones and shiny black hair in a chignon added high fashion drama as she skillfully caressed her violin to the tune of “Fly me to the Moon” and “Moon River.” She reminded me of the instrumentalist girl group “Bond” who were very popular in the early 2000s.

Candidate #5 Kaycie Lyn Fajardo performed magic tricks to the amazement of the audience. From conjuring up fake flowers to live white doves. For the finale, she carefully put a dove inside a black box and seconds later, she lifted the box to reveal a huge python which she carried towards a fearful audience.

Candidate #28 Sheila Reyes performed an interpretative dance about the Marawi siege, and her choice of a blood red dress is symbolic of this conflict. Her number began with a mash-up of ballet and hiphop choreography and ended in a very contemporary dance form.   

Candidate #1 Shawntel Cruz sang an acoustic version of Elvis Presley’s “Can’t Help Falling In Love” while she played the guitar.  She looked cool and sexy in a nude illusion gold gown while performing the song.

And then there was candidate #9 Winwyn Marquez who wowed in a very Beyonce-esque, gold fringe micro mini dress that can only be given justice by an ultra sexy body.

Within the first few seconds of her hip thrusting, body shaking routine, the audience was transfixed.  

She was giving me Nicole Sherzinger in “Dancing with the Stars” realness. But all the while I kept thinking this is Alma Moreno version 2.0 with a better “tangga” and complete with all the lifting, throwing, flipping and spinning.

She doesn’t need to win the Talent fast track to enter the semifinals. But if the judges are looking for the most entertaining and mesmerizing performance of the night, Winwyn is very deserving. 

The judges for the evening were Valerie Weigmann, Queenie Rehmann, Angeline Valenciano, and Diether Ocampo.

After the ladies performed in the talent segment, Kiana Valenciano sang Miley Cyrus’ “It’s the Climb” wearing a beautiful white, fully beaded, bustier, mermaid gown by Mikee Andrei. She looked very young and fresh with the simple, fuss free styling.  

The night ended with the much anticipated appearance of the 35 MWP Candidates wearing outfits by several Filipino designers, namely: Martin Bautista, Cheryl Vicente, Esme Palaganas, Manny Halasan, Jhong Sudlon, Ryan Ablaza Uson, and Claiza Bihasa. 

The scores that the candidates earned from the runway were added to their Zalora Fashion Show scores to come up with the Top Model Finalists. As announced by the MWP Organization, the Top Model Finalists are:

  • #6  Jona Sweett
  • #9  Winwyn Marquez
  • #15 Laura Lehmann
  • #22 Chelsea Manalo
  • #26 Janela Cuaton
  • #27  Ella Lubag
  • #32 Cynthia Thomalla


For the Top Model competition winner, it would be a toss up between #22 Chelsea Manalo and #27 Ella Lubag.  Chelsea has an amazing catwalk style reminiscent of Naomi Campbell while Ella’s face look very high fashion.

All the pre-pageant activities and fast track events have been completed. The candidates have done everything they can to make an impression and hopefully land them in the Top 15 semifinals on Sunday night.

They are now busy with the final rehearsals for the show and trying to get whatever sleep and rest they can squeeze in between their hectic schedules.

It is going to be a beauty queen filled coronation night with the presence of Miss World 2016, Stephanie del Valle of Puerto Rico, and her entire court of Continental Queens of Beauty. The country and the world awaits the crowning of our next Miss World Philippines as she embarks on the quest for our second Miss World crown. –

Voltaire has 10 years of experience in the fashion industry. He previously worked with a luxury clothing and accessories brand in Los Angeles, CA. He graduated magna cum laude from the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, major in Fashion Design. He also holds a BS in Applied Economics and BS in Marketing from DLSU. He is now doing real estate but finds time to pursue his passions in his spare time.

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