Top Model of the World 2016 Margo Cooper
With a name like Margo Cooper, one wouldn’t automatically expect to meet a Bulgarian-Russian beauty queen like her. But this Dubai-based runway diva – who was adjudged Top Model of the World last year in Germany – has certainly been a frequent traveler that she can take on the profile of most any nationality you’d want her to slip into.
As part of her reign, Margo spent a number of days in the Philippines in late February till early March to take on a scheduled pictorial with photographer Raymond Saldaña, do charity work with Bahay Aruga and go to Palawan for a workcation that made her want to come back for more.
My friend, Josh Mangila – who is Editor-in-Chief of Xpedition Magazine – arranged for an exclusive interview with Margo during her stay, and the following is a transcript of the question-and-answer:
1. Being The Top Model of The World and one of the most beautiful faces, what is real beauty for you?
Thank you. As for me the real beauty is to be unique, self-confident, kind, charismatic, to have a strong personality, to be full of energy and to love the life. I think it’s very attractive. Because as we all know that visible beauty is just a temporary thing. But intelligence, smartness and a good heart are priceless and permanent. And the happiest girls are the pretties. I love this statement!
Margo during her visit to Bahay Aruga
2. What exactly did you feel when you went to Bahay Aruga?
I would tell the truth, it was not my first time of cooperation with charity organizations, but it was the first time when I’ve visited it by myself. Of course, it’s heartbreaking to see these little heroes who are trying to win the struggle with cancer. I truly believe all of them have chances to live long, happy and healthy lives. It’s the responsibility of all of us to give all possible support to these children. Because the problem of cancer touches all of us. These children are so small and innocent but at the same moment they are very strong because they faced cancer so early. May God give them better health…
3. Tell us about the best 3 foods that you have tasted in Palawan?
The food in the hotel I’ve stayed was outstanding! The seafood was local and very fresh and chefs there are so talented. They do super delicious food. I was impressed. And I’ve tried tamalilok, what is basically wood warm,but I didn’t know before to try! It tastes like oysters! I liked it a lot before I got know what is it. And I’m a big fan of coconut water, so I was at the right place because Palawan is very rich for coconut palms.
Raymond Saldaña (leftmost) accompanied Margo in Palawan
4. Would you come back to Palawan if given a chance?
I’m in love with Palawan and I didn’t have a chance to visit all the wonderful places there, so I dream to come back there for vacations and to enjoy the sea, water sports, nature, hiking, delicious food and amazing people. I’ve left a piece of my soul there.
5. How did you learn about the beauty of Palawan?
It was my dream to visit Palawan because I saw so many pictures of the island and I can say the reality was much better then my expectations. Palawan is not only a typical beach paradise place, but also has someone absolutely unique-the underground river. It was an amazing experience of taking a tour there. The nature of the island is incredible and it’s a very photogenic place.
6. Where would be the next place in the Philippines that you want to travel next?
I would love to go to Cebu and to swim with whale sharks! I love this kind of adrenaline and cannot miss the chance to try it!
7. Name 4 essential things inside your bag?
I always have with me ID, card, phone and a hairbrush. So, I’m always ready to travel.
8. Tell us about your photoshoot in the Philippines?
I loved our photoshoot in Philippines especially when we worked outside because the nature was amazing and locations are very inspiring! I didn’t feel like it was work. I enjoyed a lot. I woke up every morning around 5 am but I didn’t feel tired because the Philippines gives me so much good energy! And I worked with an amazing team-they are true professionals and awesome people. I was very lucky to stay and shoot in amazing luxury hotels, I enjoyed every moment there! I love my job, cannot complain!
Margo during the boat ride to the Underground River
9. If you will have your own family someday, will you bring them to Palawan?
Hopefully it’s gonna happen very soon! For sure, I would love to come to Palawan with my own family. When I came back from Philippines I was like a new born, had an amazing mood and now all my friends want to visit Palawan!
10. What is your message for young girls who wants to follow your footsteps?
Never stop to learn, to dream, to work hard and always appreciate what do you have, respect people around you, be self confident, be kind and stay yourself.
I won’t be surprised if I get to see Margo returning to our country for another visit. And given her wide-eyed enthusiasm about nature and travel, she will certainly enjoy more places to the max. For sure, another round of interview will take place by then. 🙂