With today’s start of the Photo Exhibit of the Bb. Pilipinas 2020 candidates in their National Costumes and the Finals Night set for April 17, allow me to share my favorites among them. I picked this eight (8) for various reasons as briefly described below:
Paolo Ballesteros for #Binibini29 Honey Cartasano: Very inventive, larger than life and with the best cultural inspiration used for a NatCos;
Macoy Elipane for #Binibini26 Czarina Guiao and the duo of Jun-g Bayona Candelario and Brent Naranja for #Binibini21 Thea Cenarosa: Pageant-theatrical with the wow factor that would make them stand out onstage and even in a parade;
Nick Guarino with Festivali Designs and Concepts for #Binibini12 Maureen Montagne: Meticulously crafted like a complex jigsaw puzzle assembled face down with the finished product showing a highly professional artisan feel;
Jomar Peralta for #Binibini36 Vickie Marie Rushton: Dreamy and magical like a character straight out of a fairy tale coming to life;
Ken Adrienne Batino and Jevin Salaysay for #Binibini23 Gabrielle Basiano: Whimsical without going overload; the focus is balanced equally between the wearer and the elements of the kalesa;
Edwin Uy for #Binibini14 Hazel Ortiz: simple lines that are both elegant and refined like a throwback to pageant Filipinianas of yesteryears given a modern twist;
Basha Subijano for #Binibini34 Mercedes Pair: Like a celebratory cake that is baked and decorated right, this flowery creation is executed with the right amount of ambition and creativity.
Behold your #Binibini11 Maureen Montagne in her Bb. Pilipinas National Costume created by Nick Guarino of Festivali Designs and Concepts:
(Notes from the designer)
A reflection of Batangas’ rich history, culture and the resources that has made the province an economic power in the Southern Tagalog periphery. Evidenced by the Calatagan pot, Batangas antedates the Hispanic influence as it had already thrived as small LAKANATES scattered in its plains and high grounds. Long before the Spanish colonization, these LAKANATES were already producing their own food like the staple rice, coconuts that abound in its plains and have been harvesting the bounty of its seas.
Batangas in the 14th century was already trading with China, India and the Indonesian kingdoms as evidenced by archeological diggings that has found quaint pieces of jewelry, porcelain dishes and jars from different Chinese dynasties. As such, this costume strives to incorporate these historical and cultural dimensions into a stunning masterpiece. A bold statement that tells the past, the present and the future of the beautiful province of Batangas!
Batangas will forever have an unforgettable 2020 having experienced both volcanic eruption and the pandemic. This is a reminder of the hero and resiliency of each and every Batangueño to rise depsite all adversities.
Photography: Raymond Saldaña
Set: Henry Reyes HGR Events and Sabrosas
Make way for these wise queens as they shop ‘til they drop wearing BRAGAIS™️ Cristy & Darylle.
Then feel the power of our modern Filipina queens as they stood their ground confidently and independently with BRAGAIS™️ Gazini and Jehza.
Here are Binibinis 1-19 of Bb. Pilipinas 2020
Project Manager: Bessie Besana
Creative Director: Jed Velasco
Photographer: Don Caras & Yukie Sarto
Head Fashion Stylist: Vhee Co
Head Make-Up Artist: Arnel Palmera
Set Designer: Myke Francis Mayores
Note: Binibini20 Thea Cenarosa was absent during the shoot due to a small accident at home that prevented her from reporting to the activity.
Just as I had thought, splitting the second batch of Bb. Pilipinas 2020 candidates right in the middle would prove to be hard – especially with the fifth and sixth because the former will automatically be part of the upper half.
At any rate, #Binibini13 Samantha Bernardo is my hands-down top pick for this group. She who has been runner-up long enough to prove her loyalty to BPCI, apart from being the crown-worthiest of the ten. This Palaweña is eyeing Supranational, not surprisingly. She has practically “ceded” the International crown to Vickie Rushton as early as the day she decided to sign up for the third time.
Now as far as the second and third here, I am giving the slight edge to #Binibini18 Karen Laurrie Mendoza of Iloilo because – outside of Vickie – she fits the template of Miss International nicely. She has almost the same bone structure and height as Bea Rose Santiago, not to mention observations that Madame SMA started to take a shine on her in all the activities before the quarantine period.
#Binibini11 Maureen is third in rank for me. She is the toughest opponent of Sam B. for Supranational. But in all honesty, I can see her being more appropriate for Grand International instead.
My fourth and fifth are potential spoilers. #Binibini16 Alexandra Mae Rosales and #Binibini19 Kimberly Anne Tiquestiques. Both tall and promising, their distinctly Pinay beauties can suit up well for a lesser title or runner-up placement if fate dictates the two of them to shine that far.
How about you, dear readers? Who belongs to your upper half among Binibinis 11-20?
P.S. My 6th in this group is #Binibini14 Hazel Ortiz.
Cherry blossoms in June!
Here are Binibinis 11-20 in their official swimwear photos for Bb. Pilipinas 2020.
The next group of ten will follow in a day or two so you can appreciate this second batch for now.
Photography: Raymond Saldaña
Team : Arnie Vergara
Swimwear: Domz Ramos
Stylist: Vhee Co
Aura Nicole de Jesus
Accessories : Adam Rico de Guzman
Set design: Henry Reyes of HGR Event
Miss World Philippines Organization National Director Arnold Vegafria issued his statement after Maureen Montagne turned down the Miss Eco International title:
“As Miss World Philippines National Director, I am greatly saddened to hear that Miss Eco International 2019 1st Runner-Up Maureen Montagne declined her privilege as the rightful successor of recently dethroned Miss Eco International 2019 Suheyn Cipriani from Peru.
Being the next in line, she was automatically qualified to wear the prestigious crown which would have brought glory to our country, would have given her the rare opportunity to become United Nations Ambassador for Ecotourism, and possibly would’ve made pageant history with the country’s back-to- back wins for Miss Eco International 2018-2019.
What disappointed me even more was that she chose to join another local pageant instead–without even according proper courtesy to the Miss World Philippines and Miss Eco International organizations. This is a clear violation of the prestigious international pageant’s rules and regulations since her tenure has not yet formally ended.
Based on my dialogue with Miss Eco International founder Dr. Amaal Rezk, Maureen could’ve still accepted the crown and waited until September when she can formally relinquish her title–but she refused. Her conduct unbecoming of pageant queen is a clear deterrent to her loftier aspirations for yet another crown.
Despite all these, I still send her my blessings and wish her luck in all her future endeavors.
#missecointernational #missecointernational2019 #missworldphilippines
Maureen Montagne, whose name was in the news lately due to developments stating that Miss Eco International 2019 winner Suheyn Cipriani of Peru is pregnant and that she might assume the title, finally issues her statement about the whole thing.
“Always remember, your focus determines your reality”- George Lucas
Recently I’ve had to make some unexpected and important decisions. First and foremost, I want to say that this past year, I have poured my heart and soul to Binibining Pilipinas. I am eternally grateful for everyones support on my pageant journey and I would like to say – I’m sticking with it.
I have made a commitment to the Binibining Pilipinas Charities Inc. full heartedly and I will continue to chase my dreams of competing on the BBP stage in the hopes of representing our country on the international stage.
I am thankful for the opportunities I have been offered this week by the Miss Eco International Organization to whom I will always be thankful to, but I know deep down I need to do what’s right in my heart. I sincerely wish the woman who will take the crown a wonderful reign ahead.
I hope that everyone is safe and healthy during these trying times 🙏💕
Always remember to follow your dreams✨
And so, Maureen decided to stick it out with Bb. Pilipinas. And I’m glad she did because being a replacement titleholder to someone whose reign is over by now (if not for delays caused by the pandemic) won’t do much good for her pageant career. I think she has a better chance of grabbing another national crown of which she will be the rightful owner and possibly do well internationally. Or Supranationally, for that matter.
According to my sources at Miss World Philippines Organization, the news item above is NOT yet confirmed. Unless an official statement is released by the organizers of Miss Eco International, everything is still premature at this point.
Once the Egypt-based officials make it final, then that would be the time to quietly rejoice for the back-to-back win of sorts.
After the release of the new sets of official photos and yesterday’s Ever Bilena Beauty Tour by the Bb. Pilipinas 2020 candidates, normannorman.com is sharing with you his 2nd Round Picks that should set up things nicely for the Press Presentation that will happen on March 17. Take note that I arranged the #Binibinis according to the order of my preference and not by numbers anymore:
Samantha Bernardo of Palawan
Karen Laurrie Mendoza of Iloilo
Gabrielle Basiano of Borongan, Eastern Samar
Hannah Arnold of Masbate
Patrizia Garcia of Manila
Honey Cartasano of Rizal
Alexandra Mae Rosales of Laguna
Cindy Obeñita of CDO, Misamis Oriental
Vickie Marie Rushton of Negros Occidental
Carina G. Cariño of La Union
Hazel Ortiz of Pasig
Pat Babista of Quezon Province
Francesca Taruc of Angeles City, Pampanga
Danica Joy Acuña of Romblon
Maureen Montagne of Batangas
Alexandra Faith Garcia of Olongapo
Jash Dimaculangan of Camarines Sur
Samantha Alexandra Panlilio of Cavite
Shanon Tampon of Caloocan
Kimberly Anne Tiquestiques of Balagtas, Bulacan
As of today, the competition is still wide open for all the ladies. The leaderboard, though, is starting to take shape more clearly, such that if the Grand Coronation Night will happen later, the potential titleholders are Samantha Bernardo, Karen Laurrie Mendoza, Gabrielle Basiano, Hannah Arnold and Patrizia Garcia, with Honey Cartasano and Alexandra Mae Rosales as runners-up.
But with the remaining pre-pageant counting more than a month and a half to go, anything can still happen. Samantha Bernardo is looking like my only surefire winner at this point.