Philippines’ MJ Lastimosa in Top 6 bettors pick to win 63rd Miss Universe crown; Colombia, USA, Venezuela, India, Spain lead poll

Before midnight on Sunday, January 25, 2015 (Monday morning in Manila) the new Miss Universe replacing Gabriela Isler of Venezuela would have been named.

The Miss Universe Pageant is always a big event for bettors, gamblers and oddmakers.

MJ Lastimosa MU swimsuit2Miss Philippines Mary Jean Lastimosa

In this 63rd edition of the most prestigious beauty contest, Miss Colombia, Miss USA, Miss Venezuela, Miss India, Miss Spain and Miss Philippines are consistently the top picks to win the coveted Nexus crown among the 88 contestants.

NicerOdds (, which claims to have the best offer to placing bets in the current Miss Universe contest held in Doral, Florida as they cover the top betting sites online to guide gamblers, have come up with the top picks with corresponding Highest Odds and Lowest Odds numbers.

MU 2014 Miss Colombia Paulina VegaMiss Colombia Paulina Vega

Miss Colombia leads, followed by Miss USA, then Miss Venezuela, Miss India, Miss Spain and Miss Philippines.

Miss France, Miss Costa Rica, Miss Mexico and Miss Russia make up the rest of the Top 10. MU 2014 Miss USAMiss USA Nia Sanchez

Placing 11th to 20th are delegates from Brazil, St. Lucia, Angola, Australia, Indonesia, Guyana, Ukraine, Haiti, Kosovo and Puerto Rico.

MU 2014 Miss SpainMiss Spain Desiree Cordero Ferrer

After the preliminaries on January 22nd though, where the candidates paraded in their National Costume, Swimsuit and Long Gown, MsUniversePageant Hotspot ( came up with the Top 15 performers and ranked #1 is Miss Philippines Mary Jean Lastimosa.

MU 2014 Miss India gown1Miss India Noyonita Lodh

“Her performance in the preliminary competition was sublime. It goes to show that she really is more than prepared for the deathmatch. We’re not digging the style of her gown as it didn’t accentuate her figure, but sure did in the swimsuit round! She’s our top bet in swimsuit. Whew! Her body figure is what we are envious of,” says the blurb why the Filipina beauty tops  them all.

MU 2014 Miss ArgentinaMiss Argentina Valentina Ferrer

Ranked #2 is Miss Argentina Valentina Ferrer.

Miss Jamaica Kaci Fennell is ranked #3, followed by Miss Mexico Josselyn Garciglia at #4 and Miss Colombia Paulina Vega at #5.

MU 2014 Miss VenezuelaMiss Venezuela Migbelis Castellanos

Sixth is Miss Ukraine Diana Harkusha, Miss USA Nia Sanchez at #7, Miss Costa Rica Karina Ramos at #8, and Miss Guyana Niketa Barker and Miss Russia Yulia Alipova at #9 and #10 respectively.

The rest of the Top 15 are Miss Dominican Republic Kimberly Castillo, Miss Ecuador Alejandra Argudo, Miss Spain Desiree Cordero Ferrer, Miss Indonesia Elvira Devinamira and Miss Kenya Gaylyne Ayugi.

Choosing Miss Universe 2014 are judges Filipino boxing sensation Manny Pacquiao, musician Emilio Estefan, model-actor William Levy, NFL great DeSean Jackson, skateboarder and reality TV star Rob Dyrdek, baseball pitcher Giancarlo Cruz-Michael Stanton, fashion journalist Louise Roe, British author and movie and TV personality Lisa Vanderpump, fashion designer-actress Kristin Cavallari and Marie-Claire creative director Nina Garcia.

MU 2014 Miss MexicoMiss Mexico Josselyn Garciglia

Meanwhile, Miss Universe Philippines 2013 and 3rd Runner-Up Ariella Arida serves as the correspondent for On The Scene, a web series on the Miss Universe YouTube channel, taking fans to behind-the-scenes as the 88 contestants prepare for exclusive events leading up to the big night including Preliminary Competition, National Costume Show and Contestant Rehearsals on the official Miss Universe channel

Last year, it was Miss Universe Philippines 2012 and 1st Runner-Up Janine Tugonon who did the task. The previous year it was Miss Universe Philippines 2011 and 3rd Runner-Up Shamcey Supsup.

This is also the fifth time that a Filipino, in the person of Manny Pacquiao, sits as judge in the Miss Universe.

Foreign Affairs Secretary Carlos P. Romulo was the first Filipino to sit as judge in the prestigious contest when it was held in Manila in 1974 won by Miss Spain Amparo Munoz.

In 1989, fashion designer Josie Cruz Natori was one of the judges who chose Angela Visser of Holland as Miss Universe in Cancun, Mexico.

Then in 1991, singer Kuh Ledesma sat in the panel in Las Vegas, Nevada that chose Miss Mexico Lupita Jones as the new Miss Universe.

Manny-PacquiaoManny Pacquiao: 5th Filipino Miss Universe judge

In 2011, Broadway star Lea Salonga flew to Sao Paulo, Brazil to judge the contestants with Miss Angola Leila Lopes winning the crown. Lea later said in an interview that she had Miss Philippines Shamcey Supsup ranked #2 in her sheet. Shamcey placed 3rd Runner-Up.

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Miss Venezuela is Miss Earth 2013; Austria, Thailand and Korea as Misses of the Elements

Miss Venezuela Alyz Henrich was proclaimed Miss Earth 2013 in eco-friendly ceremonies at the Versailles in Alabang, Muntinlupa City, Philippines Saturday night. The 22-year-old beauty bested 87 other candidates from all over the globe to be this year’s queen of female earth warriors. In her bio she said, “Taking care of our water is taking care of ourselves, water is life. Let’s keep it clean.”


Crowned Miss Air was Miss Austria Katia Wagner, while Miss Thailand Punika Kulsoontornrut was declared Miss Water and Miss Korea Catharina Choi as Miss Fire.

Rounding up the Top 8 were Miss Philippines, Miss Mexico, Miss Poland and Miss Serbia. The remainder of the group that advanced to the  semi-finals were Misses Turkey, Chile, France, China, Mauritius, Spain, Poland and USA.

In her answer to the question, “How does eco-tourism contribute to the protection of the environment?” Miss Venezuela said, “Because we people are responsible also for destruction (of) our nature, we need to be aware and take care of Mother Earth.”
Favorites Miss India and Miss Ukraine did not make it to Top 16. The surprise was Miss Austria who was not mentioned a lot in the predictions but almost got the main title.
As the host country’s representative, Angelee delos Reyes did her best in the Q & A. Her question, “It’s been a month since Haiyan hit the Philippines, how do you think Mother Earth feels now?”
She answered: “It feels like Mother Earth is very sad of what’s happening, that’s also in the song I wrote about what’s happening to our environment nowadays, environmental problems… I think typhoon Yolanda didn’t just happen to devastate Philippines and other countries but a wake up call or to make us realize that we must take care of one another, take care of the Earth, environment, so that it will take care of us in return. So together, let’s save our Earth not just for the people of today but the generations to come.”
Miss Earth 2012 Tereza Fajksova of Czech Republic ended her reign with a serenade by singer-recording artist David Pomeranz who rendered his hit song, “Got To Believe.”
Venezuela, having won two titles in the Big 4 Pageants (with Miss Universe Gabriela Isler) has dislodged the Philippines as the Country of the Year (with Miss World Megan Young).
The Philippines, though, can reclaim the glory if Bea Rose Santiago wins Miss International in Japan culminating on December 17. Miss Supranational 2013 Mutya Johanna Datul has added to the Philippines’ hold as a beauty powerhouse. Ariella Arida was third runner-up in the Miss Universe. In the debuting Miss Grand International in Thailand won by Miss Puerto Rico Janelee Chaparro, Ali Forbes placed third runner-up, too.
Live stream was on and and shown live on TV on Star World. Delayed telecast on ABS-CBN Sunday before ASAP.



Miss Venezuela wins Miss U, Philippines proud of Ariella’s 3rd runner-up finish

Miss Venezuela Gabriela Isler was crowned Miss Universe 2013 last Saturday night in Moscow, Russia. She is the seventh Venezuelan Miss Universe. Declared first runner-up was Miss Spain Patricia Rodriguez; second runner-up was Miss Ecuador Constanza Baez; third runner-up was Miss Philippines Ariella Arida; and fourth runner-up was Miss Brazil Jakelyne Oliveira.


Of the many predictions to make it to the Top 5, three made it–Miss Philippines, Miss Spain and Miss Venezuela. International Business Times missed on Miss Australia and Miss Russia to enter Top 16. Miss USA made the cut until Top 10. Very few placed their bet on Miss Ecuador to barge into the finals. Three of the touted Trump Card six candidates did not advance to the semi-finals–Miss Russia (as host country), Miss Italy (by virtue of swimsuit sponsor Yamamay being an Italian brand) and Miss Turkey (by virtue of hair sponsor CHI).


The 86 candidates were judged during the preliminary competition on November 5 in three areas–swimsuit, evening gown and interview. Fifteen were chosen: Costa Rica, Ukraine, China, Ecuador, Great Britain, Indonesia, Venezuela, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Spain, USA, Nicaragua, Switzerland, India and Brazil. The 16th candidate was for winning the most Fan Votes online and it was Philippines.


The 16 candidates then strutted in their swimsuit and 10 were chosen: Spain, Philippines, Great Britain, India, Brazil, USA, Ukraine, Ecuador, Venezuela and Dominican Republic. Five–Ecuador, Brazil, Spain, Philippines and Venezuela–advanced to the final question-and-answer portion, where only Miss Philippines did not engage the services of an interpreter to answer Tara Lipinski‘s question.

“What can be done about the lack of jobs for young people starting their careers around the world?” the Olympian and NBC host asked Ariella.

“For the people who have lack of jobs, I do believe that we people should invest in education and that is my primary advocacy, because we all know that if everyone of us is educated and well aware of what we are doing, we could land into jobs and we could land a good career in the future. Education is the primary source and ticket to a better future,” she said.

As the last finalist to be asked, Gabriela got Steven Tyler‘s question, “What is your biggest fear and what is your plan to overcome it?”

Through an interpreter, the beauteous Miss Venezuela answered:  “I believe that one may have a lot of fears, but nonetheless, this is nothing negative. I believe that we should all overcome our fears, and this in turn, would make us much stronger. And thus(ly), we can become stronger persons. As soon as we overcome our fears and we’re sure of ourselves, we can face any challenge.”

To some, the answer was not really an answer to the question, and many were surprised that after Miss Brazil was called as fourth runner-up, Miss Philippines was immediately called as third runner-up. Many believed that the crown was a toss between Miss Spain (who answered her question better) and Miss Philippines. But then, as the Miss Universe Organization is a business under the Trump conglomerate, along with Telemundo (what NBC is in Latin America), Mr. Trump preferred a Latin beauty to win and not an Asian or European (who already competed in the rival Miss World).

Ariella’s third runner-up finish continues the Top 5 streak of the Philippines in the Miss Universe the past four years–Venus Raj (4th runner-up) in 2010, Shamcey Supsup (3rd runner-up) in 2011 and Janine Tugonon (1st runner-up to USA’s Olivia Culpo) in 2012.

Janine, by the way, was online host for this year. Her “On The Scene With Janine” had her interviewing, annotating and following the contestants in the red carpet, during the evening gown competition and chatting with performers Panic! At The Disco. She did this year what Shamcey did last year.

For Filipinos and her fans and supporters all over the globe, third runner-up finish is not at all bad and they are proud of Ariella’s achievement in this year’s ultimate pageant of goddesses in the Universe.


She has this posted in the Miss Philippines Universe Facebook page:

“I may not have brought home the crown, but I hope I have given my best to exceed my people’s expectations. The winning streak continued –2010, 2011, 2012, 2013.

And that makes us a powerhouse of beauty and intelligence in the entire universe. And you, my dear kababayans, are the true heroes of this pageant. Thank you for the love and support up to the last hurdle of my intense battle. It was a competition with discriminating judges with all their personal choices and that we have to accept. I have accepted my fate, I have given my best, and that makes me a beauty queen till the last day of my life.

Mabuhay ang lahing magaganda.
Mabuhay ang bansang PILIPINAS!”

–Ariella Arida, Miss Universe 2013 3rd Runner-Up

Photos from

Miss Philippines top favorite to win Miss Universe crown

Just a few days into the Miss Universe 2013 coronation in Moscow, Russia on November 9, Miss Philippines Ariella Arida continues to be the top favorite to win the title by beauty pageant aficionados all over the world.


After the preliminary competition on November 5 (streamed live through the Miss Universe website), Ariella strengthened her position as the candidate to beat in the 62nd edition of the most prestigious beauty contest. After host Russia, the Philippines drew the loudest cheer during the swimsuit and evening gown presentations.
Other countries that got loud cheers from the crowd were Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, Myanmar, Peru, Poland, Puerto Rico, South Africa, Ukraine and USA. Nicaragua was voted Best in National Costume.
Ariella’s excellent catwalk performance during the Tony Ward Mercedes Benz fashion show, her being chosen (along with Miss Russia, Miss Poland, Miss Austria, Miss Germany and Miss Mexico) for the Mercedes Benz commercial, and her win as Ice Princess in the Glam Shoot–all contributed to her being predicted to win the third Miss Universe crown for her country.
Being the most talked about candidate and having the strongest fan base, Ariella is also assured to have place in the Trump Card–a group pf 6 candidates, most of the time the frontrunners chosen by the Trump organization included in the Top 15–possibly together with Miss Russia (being the host country), Miss Brazil (since she’s also strong in the preliminaries and the host country next year), Miss Italy (as swimwear Yamamay is an Italian brand), Miss Turkey (by virtue of CHI as official Hair Care and Title sponsor) and Miss India (being strong in the preliminaries and also due to business-related issues).
Miss Spain, Miss Poland, Miss Russia and Miss Philippines. Closest competitors, closest chums. Courtesy of Beauty Pageant Grand Slam.
For online betting company (, Miss Philippines has maintained her position as the top bet, followed by Miss USA, Miss Spain, Miss Panama, Miss Venezuela, Miss Poland, Miss France, Miss Russia, Miss Australia, Miss Ukraine, Miss Colombia, Miss India, Miss Costa Rica, Miss Brazil and Miss Britain.
For Missosologist David ( the strongest crown contenders are Poland, Spain, Philippines, Puerto Rico and Venezuela.
Considering Odds & Politics, he said of Ariella, “This girl is also everywhere. We always see her face in special events. This girl’s sash appears strong in this new era cause of the strong and phenomenal Filipina queens who were successful before her. So all countries eyes are focused to the Philippine representative (sic). Plus, coming from a pageant lover country, her victory could gain a big wave of attention to set the mind of the viewers back from Miss World.” For Venezuela, he declared, “She is VENEZUELA. The strongest sash of them all. It’s like Miss Universe is not complete without Venezuela, USA and Puerto Rico sash for short!”
Another Missosologist, by the name of Miss Twix, who combined astrology with personal assessment, chose 12 candidates to complete the astrological signs and said that Miss Philippines, being Scorpio, has the highest degree of luck of 9+. Following is Miss France (Gemini) 9, then Miss Spain (Pisces) 9-, Miss Poland (Cancer) and Miss Australia (Taurus) both 8.5; Puerto Rico (Aquarius), Great Britain (Leo) and India (Virgo) at 8; Venezuela (Aries) and Dominican Republic (Sagittarius) 7.5; Ecuador (Capricorn) 7+; and Russia (Libra) 7.
A photograph of the Moscow skyline shows what seems to be the blue, red and yellow colors of the Philippine flag, which fans consider ominous.
The Finals judges are: Steven Tyler–Aerosmith front man and lead singer and one-time “American Idol” judge; Chef Nobu— acclaimed chef proprietor of Nobu and Matsushisa restaurants; Tara Lipinski–gold medal figure skater and 2014 Winter Olympics analyst for NBC Olympics’ multi-platform coverage; Carol Alt–TV personality, star of Fox News Channel’s “A Healthy You and Carol Alt”, international supermodel, actress, author, entrepreneur and raw-food enthusiast; Anne V–supermodel, actress, philanthropist and mentor on Oxygen’s upcoming season of “The Face” with nine consecutive appearances in Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue; Farouk Shami–founder of Farouk Systems, Inc. makers of CHI and presenting hair care sponsor of the 2013 Miss Universe Competition; Italo Fontana–pioneering designer of U-Boat Watches; and Philip Kirkorov–iconic Russian pop-star.
People are excited to know who Olivia Culpo’s successor will be on November 9. Miss Universe 2013 will be broadcast as follows:
  •    Sat 10:00 pm Moscow
  •     Sat 8:00 am Hawaii*
  •     Sat 10:00 am West Coast (Los Angeles*)
  •     Sat 1:00 pm Eastern Standard Time (New York*, Bogota) *The pageant will not be telecast live in the USA, Canada and territories. It will be shown delayed on NBC/Telemundo at 9 pm
  •     Sat 12:00 pm Mexico City
  •     Sat 1:30 pm Caracas
  •     Sat 12:00 pm Puerto Rico* See above
  •     Sat 3:00 pm Buenos Aires
  •     Sat 4:00 pm Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro
  •     Sat 7:00 pm Central European Time
  •     Sat 8:00 pm Johannesburg
  •     Sat 11:30 pm New Delhi
  •     Sun 1:00 am (Jakarta, Ho Chi Minh, Bangkok)
  •     Sun 2:00 am (Manila, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur)
  •     Sun 3:00 am (Seoul, Tokyo)
  •     Sun 5:00 am (Sydney)
  •     Sun 7:00 am (Auckland)

TV Channels showing the pageant LIVE

Photos from

Miss Universe bettors, predictors rank Miss Philippines #1

It’s still days away from the Miss Universe 2013 Pageant in Moscow but bettors and predictors already have their favorites.

Two prominent organizations have come up with their choices and these are not fan-based, unlike Missosology or Beauty Pageant Grand Slam.


Missosology and BPGS have been very helpful in providing photos, videos and updates in all major beauty pageants worldwide making aficionados follow what’s going on either on Facebook or thru their web sites almost real-time and that is highly appreciated by the followers of the candidates.

For this year’s Miss Universe contest, ( places Miss Philippines Ariella Arida as the top bet to win the crown 6-1. She is followed by Miss USA 8-1, Miss India 10-1, Miss Panama 12-1, Miss Spain 12-1 and Miss France 14-1.

Other contestants in Top 15 in order of winnability are Russia, Ukraine, Venezuela, Australia, Colombia, Japan, Azerbaijan, Brazil and Costa Rica. is affiliated with Sky Betting and Gaming, a company based in London, England  and subsidiary of BSkyB, which consists of four core brands–Sky Bet, Sky Vegas, Sky Poker and Sky Bingo.

Online publication International Business Times ( also places the Philippine bet as frontrunner.

It says, “While the finale is a good few days away, the predictions have already begun as to which country might bag the crown. This year the Philippines, Australia, Russia and USA are the hot favourites.”

According to IBT, “Ariella Arida looks like she might be following the footsteps of Megan Young, the stunning Phillipino (sic) who bagged the Miss World crown this year. She also bagged the best swimsuit body award when she won Miss Universe-Philippines on April 14, 2013. This would definitely boost up her chances of winning the crown.”

For Miss Australia, it has this to say, “Olivia Wells is a medical student and dreams to work as a doctor in developing countries. A fitness freak, she practices aerobics to keep her body in shape. Wells’ determination to help people through her medical profession can prove to be her trump card in the contest. She is also a Procrasti-baker.”

The host country’s representative “19-year-old stunner, Elmira Abdrazakova, who represents Russia this year is already the victim of racist abuse for not being Russian enough as she hails from the nation’s ethnic minorities. She was forced to close all her social networking accounts following this…All these controversies have made sure Abdrazakova garnered plenty of attention and now is counted as one of the favourites to win the crown.”

IBT places USA’s bet for possible replication of Olivia Culpo’s win last year.

“Erin Brady, the American beauty with brains is also emerging as the prominent runner for the Miss Universe title. Brady is a 25-year-old financial accountant for Prudential Retirement and has the highest number of Twitter followers (77,575) amongst the pageant contestants. That is not all; she is also a spokesperson for breast cancer and ovarian education and works closely with the concerned organizations to spread awareness about the ailment. All this work will definitely make sure that she gets to the top. This Connecticut born beauty who comes from a disturbed family of alcoholics is also the first person in her family to complete her education.”

The Pageant culminates on November 9, 2013 at Crocus City Hall in Moscow, Russia and broadcast live on NBC at 9 pm EST.

For complete information and photos of all contestants please log on to

Ariella Arida among most anticipated Miss Universe 2013 candidates in Moscow

The frenzy over first Filipina Miss World Megan Young has died down a bit, as news hogging the headlines now is the devastation brought about by the 7.2 magnitude earthquake in Bohol last Tuesday morning.


It’s really heartbreaking, as aside from the deaths in Bohol, Cebu and other places, centuries-old churches, all symbols of Filipino heritage, tumbled down like lego blocks.

The earthquake was compared to 32 Hiroshima bombs, experts said. Yes, that strong. The only good thing about it, though, is there’s no radiation affecting the surroundings, otherwise it could have been a holocaust.

Reportedly, water turned yellow and odor emanated from underground. Could be because of sulfur.

Prayers are said every hour, every minute for those affected. Disaster after disaster has over time tested Filipinos’ spirit and resiliency. And despite all these, as a people, we still manage to smile.

If and when there’s something that would cheer us, it’s a triumph or honor brought about by a fellow citizen in the vast realm out there—whether it’s a beauty title (like Megan’s and Mutya’s), sports championship or recognition in the field of arts and entertainment. People have become hopeless if for once government could give us reason to laugh without sarcasm.


Happening soon is the annual Miss Universe Pageant, this time it’s held in Moscow, Russia. Having placed honorably in the Top 5 the last three years (4th runner-up Venus Raj in 2010, 3rd runner-up Shamcey Supsup in 2011 and Janine Tugonon who almost got the crown if it were not for Miss USA in 2012), Filipinos are hopeful Ariella Arida can bring home the bacon and become the country’s third Miss Universe (after Gloria Diaz in 1969 and Margie Moran in 1973).

Two organizations—Missosology and Beauty Pageant Grand Slam—both dedicated to global pageants’ winners and candidates since the inception of the contests have put our very own Ariella Arida among the frontrunners.

Although the result of their respective surveys don’t have bearing to the judges’ scores, people all over the world have come up with their own favorites in the organizations’ People’s Choice. Ariella is running first in Grand Slam votes and second in Missosology.

There is an interesting opinion that came out in Missosology, that among the 87 or so candidates, Miss Philippines is one of the five being anticipated in Moscow for one reason or another.


Said the opinion, “There are five Miss Universe candidates to watch out for this year. Not to say that they are the sure winners or sure semifinalists. Rather, this is a list of candidates where circumstances are actually working on their favor. These are the contestants that people are already talking about even before they arrive in Moscow.”

Miss Philippines: “Normally there will be deafening fan screams from the Philippines and it doesn’t matter if their contestant is a clapper or not. But with Venus Raj breaking the drought in 2010, this country is on the path towards its third Miss Universe crown. It almost happened last year, so this year is very special with hopes running high. Ariella, with her own brand of class and elegance, is the perfect candidate for a hopeful nation.”

Miss Israel: “Born in Ethiopia, Yityish Aynaw represents the struggles of Beta Israel or Ethiopian Jews within the Israeli nation. Her victory somehow created a stir to the point that she was featured in CNN and got an appointment with Barack Obama. Beautiful and elegant, Yityish reminds us of Leila Lopes. She exudes class and her confidence got a lot of boost with all the media attention.”

Miss France: “Hinarani de Longeaux represents the French clout at Miss Universe. She will be elevated by the past performances of her predecessors from Marie Payet to Chloe Mortaud. Her interesting Tahitian background earned her a legion of fans. Her beauty is a fusion of Gallic flair and the easygoing Polynesian glow. People are already talking about her and the possibility of bagging the crown for France.”

Miss Great Britain: “Amy Willerton, a celebrity in her home country, will give hope to her nation Great Britain at the Miss Universe contest. Amy is banking on her showbiz aura to steer past clear of the competition. She has the looks, the glamor and certainly the chutzpah to become the first Miss Great Britain at the Miss Universe semis.”


Miss USA: “With Venezuela having its own back-to-back win, why not the United States, too? As the world’s beauty pageant superpower, this Big4 Ranking topnotcher is very much satisfied by having Erin Brady as its representative. She has a compelling personal story with a sweet personality and with the looks to die for. Indeed, there will be no question at all if the Connecticut native will become Miss Universe 2013.”

The candidates are scheduled to arrive between October 20 and 24 for the Pageant that culminates on November 9, telecast over US network NBC at 9 p.m. Ara, as she’s fondly called by family and friends, had her send-off press conference earlier today.

Many times over in her various interviews, Ara said she can take the pressure and will do her best as competing in the Miss Universe is not just for herself but for the whole country.

We see a gleam of sunshine that would elate the country once more in Ariella Arida.

More about the candidates at or