Mariem Claret Velazco got her birthday wish alright. And in the process, she gifted Venezuela with its 8th Miss International crown after being chosen as the 58th Miss International tonight at the Tokyo Dome City Hall. She gave her court a tough fight, and in the end, she rose to the top with 1st Runner-Up honors going to our very own Ma. Ahtisa Manalo. Reabetswe Sechoaro of South Africa completes the Top 3 as 2nd Runner-Up. Bianca Tirsin of Romania and Anabella Castro Sierra of Colombia placed 3rd and 4th Runners-Up, respectively.
Left to right: Colombia, South Africa, Venezuela, the Philippines and Romania
And to our Bb. Pilipinas International 2018 Ma. Ahtisa Manalo, congratulations for a job well done! 1st Runner-Up in a strong field of 77 delegates is already a big achievement. You did not disappoint your Pinoy fans all over the world who followed the Live Streaming from start to finish.
Congratulations to the organizers for a classy and well-staged – albeit very long – production for 2018.
Gut-feel is telling me that facial beauty will dominate the finals of the 58th Miss International tomorrow afternoon at the Tokyo Dome City Hall. Not that it is an unusual leaning in any beauty pageant, but this Japan-based contest is known to have differing tastes every year. There are times when surprises would claim top finishes or editions when strong favorites would hold on to the pole positions from start to finish.
It would be safe to say that the doll-looking ladies would rise to the occasion and do their countries proud. And mind you, Miss Philippines Ma. Ahtisa Manalo is not the only living mannequin among the delegates. Our bet belongs to my magic 5, without a doubt. And in her company are Miss Colombia Anabella Castro Sierra, Miss Romania Bianca Tirsin, Miss Moldova Daniela Marin and Miss Venezuela Mariem Claret Velazco.
Meanwhile, the lower half of my Top 10 is a mix of potential spoilers who could up the ante on my perceived winners – Miss Poland Marta Palucka, Miss Laos Phiyamarth Phounoasouth, Miss South Africa Reabetswe Sechoaro, Miss Thailand Keeratika Sawangjaeng and Miss Spain Susana Sanchez.
Here now are the photos of my Top 10 in my order of preference:
What do you think, dear readers?
Truthfully, Miss International is more difficult to size up as compared to its big league sisters in Miss Universe and Miss World. Each year, the trends of beauty preference among the organizers tend to vary depending on who actually catches their fancy and if the leaning for a particular edition is locked on facial beauty alone or inexplicable charm to the Japanese or solid preparedness (just like during the time of Kylie Verzosa where her meticulous efforts to stand out while blending in with the culture of the hosts cannot be denied).
As far as Ma. Ahtisa Manalo is concerned, she suited up to the doll-like face and presence that makes people stand up and take notice in a heartbeat. This is her strongest asset, and one that most other delegates could only wish they have.
And it works. She is almost always included in the events, save for those where the ladies have to be split into smaller groups to accommodate the different Japanese cities wanting to host them in their respective activities outside of Tokyo – be it in Hiroshima, Kaga City, Kyoto and the like.
Does she have a strong hold on the organization by now so that she can at the very least be part of the magic circle of 5? I want to believe she is.
Share your thoughts now, dear readers.
A kimono-wearing Filipina doll was spotted on the streets of Kaga City in Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan.
She could only be our beautiful Miss Philippines Ma Ahtisa Manalo for Miss International 2018.
Backstage photos of Miss Philippines Ma Ahtisa Manalo during the Swimsuit Preliminaries of The 58th Miss International Beauty Pageant held at Ginza Miss Paris.
FYI, the Live Stream crashed earlier due to the large volume of watchers. Watch a short clip of her walk below.
Photo credit: Kenji Yutani for Missosology
Don’t forget to tune in to the Live Stream of the Swimsuit Preliminary Judging for Miss International 2018 later in the morning from 11:00hrs-13:00hrs (Tokyo time) | 10:00hrs-12:00hrs (Manila time) so you can catch Miss Philippines Ma Ahtisa Manalo in this important pre-pageant event.
Venue will be at Ginza Miss Paris.
Live streaming will be made available simultaneously in both the pageant’s FB (https://www.facebook.com/Miss.International.bp/) and and IG (@missinternationalofficial) pages.
Miss Philippines Ma Ahtisa Manalo enjoyed her visit to 東京ワンピースタワー / Tokyo Onepiece Tower for Miss International 2018 where her childhood anime memories were brought to life-sized likeness.
Check out her photos in this entry.
Below are several photos of Miss Philippines Ahtisa Manalo (with Misses USA and Hongkong) when they visited Hiroshima.
And below is a video interview of her conducted by Filipino Japanese Journal.
After touring Saitama City and other nearby Japanese cities (top photos and left), Miss Philippines Ma Ahtisa Manalo was picked as one of 47 (out of 77) delegates of the #58thMissInternational brought by Tobu Railway for a tour of Nikko (all the images below). They went to Tochigi City and visited Nikko Edo Wonderland and Tobu World Square.
Photo credit: Stephen I. Diáz of ICA
Ahtisa even got to enjoy watching (the prep) and tasting one of her favorite Japanese quick bites – Yakitori.
What’s your take on her wardrobe so far, dear readers?