My Binibining Pilipinas 2013 Early Favorites

Pageant Monday

This year’s edition of Binibining Pilipinas is slowly proving to be knock-out success.

The turnout of applicants has been overwhelming, which may partly be attributed to Janine Tugonon’s first runner-up finish in Miss Universe last December. More than a hundred Filipinas are vying to be part of Binibini’s “golden” batch as the pageant marks its 50th year.

Screenings are ongoing this week, and I’m looking forward to seeing these girls pass the critical eyes of the judging panel.

Pia Romero, Ariella Arida and Cindy Miranda
Pia Romero, Ariella Arida and Cindy Miranda

Pia Wurtzbach Alonzo. A Star Magic talent. She began modeling at 11, and began her show biz career at age 12 in 2001. I like her mestiza look, which is very different from the classic Pinay beauty of Janine Tugonon.

Ariella Arida. 24 year-old Chemistry degree holder from UP Los Baños. I can see Diana Arevalo in her. She joined Miss Philippines Earth last year, where she represented Alaminos, Laguna. Very stunning face, and expressive eyes.

Cindy Miranda. 22 year-old Tourism cum laude graduate from UST. She represented Baguio in Miss Philippines Earth 2008, and was runner-up to Janine Tugonon in Miss UST 2010. She appeared on Pinoy Big Brother in 2011 as an unofficial housemate, and recently served as a co-host of the now defunct Wil Time, Big Time on TV5. Will Janine crown her runner-up this year? We’ll see. So far, Cindy has one of the freshest faces.

Clockwise from upper left: Charmaine Elima, Bea Santiago, Kim Artuge and Zandra Flores
Clockwise from upper left: Charmaine Elima, Bea Santiago, Kim Artuge and Zandra Flores

Charmaine Elima. The first time I saw her, I thought she could pass as a Miss Venezuela candidate. Polished, exotic, sexy. With Miss Rizal and Miss Mandaluyong titles under her belt, it’s easy to say she’s a a legit front-runner.

Bea Santiago. Mutya ng Pilipinas Overseas Communities. A finalist in Miss Tourism Queen International of the Year 2012. An experienced model and contestant, she could surely give ’em newcomers a run for their money.

Kim Artuge. Her credentials speak for herself. Cebuana registered nurse. Miss Philippines Student Nurses Association. Miss Cebu 2012 4th Runner-Up. Definitely a fighter.

Zandra Flores. Robbed of a placement in Miss Philippines Earth 2012, where she represented  Manaoag (Pangasinan). Went to University of Bradford in England. Very Filipina features, but surely with the brains.

Cassandra Naidas, Shan Apuad and Theresa Fenger
Cassandra Naidas, Shan Apuad and Theresa Fenger

 Cassandra Naidas. This 5’10” half-Korean beauty caught my attention for her great stature. A head-turner.

Shan Apuad. 5″8 1/2″ beuaty from Agusan del Sur. Mature (in a good way) and sultry beauty. Her experience as a Supermodel of the Philippines finalist could play to her advantage.

Theresa Fenger. 24 year-old Filipina-German beauty. She was Century Tuna Superbods winner years ago and was a finalist in Canadian Idol in 2006. I can see her strutting her stuff in Miss International stage.

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