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Here’s Everything You Missed At The Miss Universe 2019 Preliminaries

Gazini Ganados was definitely a stunner, and we can’t wait for coronation night on Monday

It seems only yesterday when Catriona Gray wowed the vast universe with her megawatt smile and legendary Lava Walk. With Catriona’s reign set to come to a close, a 23-year old hopeful from Cebu—Bb. Pilipinas Miss Universe Gazini Ganados—is aiming to secure a back-to-back win for her beloved country. The Top 20 finalists are chosen during the preliminaries, making it a crucial part of the competition. 


A roaring crowd





In Atlanta, Georgia, deafening cheers accompanied Gazini’s every step, from her charming introduction to her astonishing Cary Santiago National Costume. In case you were out and about yesterday during the preliminary rounds of Miss Universe, here’s everything that went on.


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Decked in a seemingly unending lavender Sherri Hill number, Gazini stood onstage alongside Miss Peru, Miss Poland, and Miss Portugal during the Presentation Show. Despite being visibly nervous, Gazini’s charm and power shone through anyway, her introduction met with loud cheers from the audience. 





Swimsuit, evening gown, and national costume


For the swimsuit portion, Gazini wore a floral G. Sonsie bikini coupled with a yellow cape, the material swishing in the air as she turned. Her walk has been dubbed “the Phoenix.” 





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Afterwards, she wore a golden evening gown by Cary Santiago. The designer shared that he made several for Gazini but in the end, they decided on two that will be used for both the preliminaries and pageant night. “It is fabric manipulation,” he said, “sans the glitter. The silhouette showcases her figure which makes it even more beautiful.”




Of course, the talk of the town was Gazini’s National Costume, which was also by Cary Santiago. She chose a silver hand-stitched creation by the couturier, and it was inspired by the Philippine eagle. The image of her emerging onto the runway with two hefty, mighty birds atop her shoulders is truly unforgettable.





Catriona’s final night


Before the preliminaries, Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach dedicated a post to Gazini on Instagram, giving her good luck kisses and assuring her that the entire country is rooting for her. “You were born to do this,” Pia wrote. “Go get that crown.” 





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But the advent of a new Miss Universe pageant, ultimately, signals the end of Catriona Gray’s glorious reign, and the beauty queen and philanthropist has nothing but gratitude. Hosting the preliminaries yesterday, she stood alongside producer and writer Nick Teplitz. Today, she took to Instagram to reflect on her final night as the reigning Miss Universe. “Underneath the noise,” she says, “the underlying tone is gratitude. Gratitude for this amazing opportunity, for all of you amazing souls who have endlessly supported me and joined me on this journey.”





Tomorrow, Catriona will share a final message that she says is dedicated to all of her supporters.


In between the preliminaries and the finals is an entire day of rehearsals, and tomorrow, the coronation night of Miss Universe 2019 will take place beginning at 8AM Manila time. 


Lead photos from @gazinii and Miss Universe