Miss World Philippines Gwendolyne Fourniol excited for global quest in India | Inquirer Entertainment

Miss World Philippines Gwendolyne Fourniol excited for global quest in India

/ 03:40 PM June 11, 2023

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Miss World Philippines Gwendolyne Fourniol/ARMIN P. ADINA

Miss World Philippines Gwendolyne Fourniol/ARMIN P. ADINA

MANILA, Philippines — After much delay and with the announcement of a different venue made earlier, the Miss World Organization (MWO) said its 71st competition is finally happening in India, the next host country. The Philippines’ representative to the global tilt, Gwendolyne Fourniol, is excited with the recent declaration, and not only because her long wait will finally be over.

“The new venue took me by surprise but it was also one of the tentative countries mentioned before. It actually added to my excitement because I really admire Indian culture and tradition,” the French-Filipino model from Negros Occidental told the Inquirer in an online interview.

MWO announced on social media on June 2 that India will host the 2023 competition, it’s 71st edition. “The decision to award India with this prestigious honor recognizes the nation’s rich cultural heritage, its commitment to promoting diversity, and its passion for empowering women,” the organization said.


Fourniol shared that she has been exposed to the South Asian country’s culture as a child. “Growing up, I was surrounded by Indian friends and Indian food, which I absolutely adore. So I can’t wait to go to India for the first time!” exclaimed the 23-year-old beauty queen


The last time the Miss World pageant was held in India was in 1996, where Grecian beauty Irene Skliva edged out 87 other delegates in ceremonies staged in Bangalore. India also holds the record for most wins in the global tilt, tied with Venezuela with six crowns. Indian beauties Yukta Mookhey and Priyanka Chopra also recorded back-to-back victories in 1999 and 2000, respectively.

MWO had earlier announced that the 71st Miss World pageant will be held in the United Arab Emirates in May this year, where reigning Polish queen Karolina Bielawska was supposed to crown her successor. In Fourniol’s recent visit to the Philippine embassy in London, where the international organization is based, embassy officials said the competition will be held in December, still in the UAE.

Bielawska’s competition was technically the contest’s 2021 edition held in Puerto Rico in December 2021. But a COVID-19 outbreak within the organization prompted MWO to halt the pageant’s staging and send the delegates back home. It resumed in March 2022, also in the Caribbean territory.

With no 2022 international competition held, Fourniol has been waiting for more than a year since her coronation as 2022 Miss World Philippines in June last year. “I’m spending the remaining days by really focusing on community work and social events, because it’s really fulfilling for me to give back especially since it’s my birthday on June 11, and it’s a tradition for me to spend my birthday with ERDA (Educational Research and Development Assistance Foundation Inc.),” she shared.

She had been deeply involved with the organization even before she pursued pageantry. Fourniol said ERDA was the one who provided education for her mother, who was born to a poor family. The foundation’s support also helped her mother pursue further studies and eventually pull the family out of poverty.

Fourniol will embark on a journey to give the Philippines only its second Miss World victory. Megan Young remains to be the only Filipino woman to bring home the “blue crown” when she was proclaimed winner in 2013 in the competition held in Indonesia. No final date and host city for the 2023 contest in India have been announced as of the moment. EDV


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TAGS: Gwendolyne Fourniol, Miss World

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