The Bb. Pilipinas 1989 winners
Before Bb. Pilipinas celebrated its Golden Edition last 2013, the national pageant turned Silver first. Below are rare clips from the 1989 Edition which had Sara Jane Paez, Lia Andanar, Jeanne Therese Hilario, Marichele Lising Cruz and Ma. Rita Apostol as titleholders.
We all know by now that Sara went to Mexico where Angela Visser won Miss Universe. Lia went to Japan and was voted Miss Friendship in Miss International. And Jeanne claimed 2nd Runner-Up honors in the Dominican Republic for that year’s Miss Maja International.
Can you recognize the Bb. Pilipinas titleholder in the photo (courtesy of Tony Paat) above?
If you guessed Miss Maja Pilipinas 1989 Jeanne Therese Hilario, then you're right!
Miss Maja Pilipinas 1989 Jeanne Therese Plata Hilario could be one of the most academically proficient Bb. Pilipinas titleholders, aside from Bb. Pilipinas Universe 1976 Lizbeth de Padua and Miss Universe Philippines 2011 Shamcey Supsup. Aside from being a Magna cum Laude
graduate of the University of Santo Tomas with a degree in Chemical Engineering and Government Licensure Exam Topnotcher, she now holds a PhD in Environmental Engineering from the University of Cambridge (UK). And for a beauty contestant in the late 80s who dreamt of becoming an Astrophysicist someday, she must be cutting it close to how she has envisioned her future profession to be.
Of course, we should not forget her pageant achievement (photo above) when she represented the Philippines in the Miss Maja International 1989 hosted by the Dominican Republic. She placed a strong 2nd Runner-Up during that edition.
And did you also know that she was a former Miss Quezon City? She won that one before becoming a Bb. Pilipinas Queen. And her 1st Runner-up then was Cherry Pie Picache who is now one of the most sought-after character actresses in the country. 😉
P.S. Thanks to my friend UP Prof. Wendell Capili for the additional infos about Jeanne.
Bb. Pilipinas 1989 Winners (left to right): Marichele Lising Cruz (Bb. Pilipinas-Tourism), Jeanne Therese Plata Hilario (Bb. Pilipinas-Maja), Sara Jane Davis Paez (Bb. Pilipinas-Universe), Lilia Eloisa Marfori Andanar (Bb. Pilipinas-International) and Maria Rita Manalili Apostol (Bb. Pilipinas-Flower Queen)
Sara Jane Paez being crowned by Perfida Limpin
Bb. Pilipinas 1989 was one previous edition of the nationals that will always remain in my head, especially if we talk about the interview portion where the top winners gave out topnotch question-and-answers that sealed their respective victories.
I can still recall host Randy Santiago putting Bb. Pilipinas Universe 1989 Sara Jane Paez on the spot by asking the latter to speak in Spanish and saying something about the former’s eye shades. There was also Bb. Pilipinas International 1989 Lilia Eloisa Andanar (who was voted Miss Friendship during Miss International 1989 in Japan) who brought the house down with how she excellently articulated her responses in English and made a number of Ateneans proud of her at one point. But more than the two, I loved Miss Maja Pilipinas 1989 Jeanne Therese Hilario (who placed 3rd during the Miss Maja International in the Dominican Republic) who spoke about her future plans of becoming an Astro-Physicist – something quite novel for a beauty queen.
There is also the interesting one-time title of Bb. Pilipinas-Flower Queen which was won by Ma. Rita Apostol (younger sister of Bb. Pilipinas alumna and Mutya ng Pilipinas World 1987 Ma. Lourdes Apostol). Up to now, I’m in the dark as to what actually happened to her supposed participation in the one-and-only holding of Miss Flower Queen International, or if it even pushed through then (someone more knowledgeable in this detail can holler, if you will).
Looking back, this batch may not be the most successful in their international outings. But compared to the years surrounding them, theirs is one coronation night that will always have a quick recall to devoted pageant followers and supporters. 🙂