After much speculation from pageant followers, and multiple declarations from interest groups in the Philippines, the New York-based Miss Universe Organization (MUO) has finally confirmed the staging of its 2016 competition in the country.
During the launching ceremonies held at the Makati Shangri-la, Wednesday night, MUO Vice President of Business Development and Marketing Shawn McClain said, “We couldn’t be happier to announce that the next edition of the Miss Universe, the 65th annual pageant, is gonna happen right here in Manila in January.”
Reigning Miss Universe Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach of the Philippines earlier announced this through a video posted online.
The privately-driven endeavor for the Philippines is spearheaded by former Ilocos Sur. Gov. Luis “Chavit” Singson, through his LCS Group.
“The long wait is over. The Miss Universe is home,” Singson said in his speech.
Also in attendance were representatives from the entities involved in the staging of the 2016 Miss Universe pageant, including Okada Manila, Solar Entertainment Corp. and SM Lifestyle Entertainment Inc.
The Department of Tourism is represented by Assistant Secretary Frederick Alegre.
Okada Manila, the local arm of the Japan-based company, is expected to provide accommodations for the delegates and the MUO entourage, while SM Lifestyle Entertainment is in charge of the competition venue—the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
Solar Entertainment will handle the broadcasting aspect of the competition. Although no details of the telecast have been released, a card label in the press kit hinted that Solar’s general entertainment channel ETC will air the ceremonies.
The MUO and the LCS Group declined to divulge more information, but encouraged everyone to visit the site www.65thmissuniverse.com and the official Facebook page (65th Miss Universe) for additional details, including the performers, hosts and judges.
A check with the media brief provided during the program indicated that the 2016 Miss Universe pageant coronation ceremonies will be a three-hour show on Jan. 31, 2017, from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m., at the MOA Arena in Pasay City.
The delegates are expected to visit the cities of Vigan, Cebu, Baguio and Davao, to showcase the Philippines’ various tourist potentials to the estimated half a billion viewers from around 190 countries and territories expected to see the finals.
This is the third time for the Philippines to host the global tilt, the first was in 1974 and the second was in 1994.
Aside from Wurtzbach, two other Filipinos received the title, Gloria Diaz (1969) and Margarita Moran (1973). TVJ