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Saturday, January 24, 2015

Miss Universe 2014 Review: British Virgin Islands - Czech Republic

The 63rd Miss Universe will be crowned on January 25 in Miami, Florida. 88 young women from all over the world are competing to become the next Miss Universe. The new winner will be crowned by outgoing title holder, Maria Gabriela Isler from Venezuela, with a brand new crown sponsored by DIC. The Miss Universe Organization seems to have hit hard times as they were unable to stage a pageant in 2014. Initially, it was announced that this edition will be Miss Universe 2014 but no one is really sure if there will be another pageant later in the year. The organizers have been tightlipped about this and so far all that is known is that this is the 63rd Miss Universe with no year being mentioned.

There were some protests when it was announced that the Doral government had to spend more than US$2 million to host the pageant. Later they released a statement saying that the funds will not come from the tax payers' pockets but from corporate sponsors instead. The contestants stayed in Miss Universe owner Donald Trump's Doral Gholf Estate and Hotel for the majority of the their time in Doral. The city, which has a large Venezuelan community and is also nicknamed Doralzuela, did not even have a venue large enough to accommodate the finals, so the nearby Florida International University Arena was chosen to host the final. The arena is a far cry from the luxurious venues of the past. Of course, the pageant has not been without controversy. Miss Israel's selfie with Miss Lebanon hit headlines around the world with the Lebanese beauty claiming that the Israeli delegate "photobombed" her. Technically the two countries are still at war.

After a long wait, we will have a new Miss Universe on Sunday. Despite complaints by fans that the quality of the events this year were an all time low, they are just relieved that the pageant will finally take place. Now on to the stars of this year's show, the 88 delegates. After following the pageant for the last couple of weeks, here are our thoughts:

****** Could be the next Miss Universe
***** Potential top 5 finalist, but will probably not win
**** Could go as far as the top 10
*** Could survive the first cut to make the top 15
** Likely to miss the cut
* Highly likely to miss the cut

BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS: JAYNENE LEWIS *

The British Virgin Islands  never get much hype and this year is no exception. Jaynene gave it her all but she is just not the type of beauty Miss Universe appreciates. I hope she had an amazing experience though.

BULGARIA: KRISTINA GEORGIEVA *

I felt for Kristina. It was quite apparent that she was not well prepared for this experience and it clearly showed on stage. She looked extremely uncomfortable.

CANADA: CHANEL BECKENLEHNER *

Some of Chanel's professional shots were amazing, but it's a little bit different without the photoshop. In general, I do think she tried her best but she was outshined by several other delegates. Her choice of gown was also bizarre and it was quite amusing to see the trail of feathers left behind by it.

CHILE: HELLEN TONCIO **

Chile has had some amazing delegates in the past and for me Hellen fell a bit short. I must say that she did a commendable job in the preliminaries, especially in swimsuit, but I don't think it will be enough.

CHINA: YANLIANG HU **

I had high hopes for Yangliang but I was actually quite disappointed when I saw her shots in Florida. Many fans have noticed her resemblance to Grey's Anatomy actress Sandra Oh and it's not really a look that works for pageants. She did have a great walk on stage though and I loved her swimsuit performance.

COLOMBIA: PAULINA VEGA ******

I have always liked this girl and she was absolutely sensational during the preliminaries. She has a phenomenal body and worked the stage really well during the swimsuit competition. She looked equally amazing in the gown. If she repeats that performance, she will probably be the next Miss Universe. There have been reports that she's arrogant and has a diva attitude, so that might stand in her way though. I still think that Colombia could have there second Miss Universe after a 56 year wait on Sunday night!

COSTA RICA: KARINA RAMOS ****

I was pretty disappointed when I saw Karina's gown for the preliminaries. She could definitely have picked a better one. She looked amazing in swimsuit though and had amazing energy. I wasn't on the Costa Rica bandwagon at first but she was really impressive during her time in Doral. I do still believe she could make the cut on Sunday night.

CROATIA: IVANA MISURA **

People have said that she's an Angelina Jolie lookalike. Yes, I see it, but I also think her look is quite mature and she just didn't stand out during the preliminaries. If she makes it, she will be a Trump pick.

CURACAO: LAURIEN ANGELISTA ***
 
Laurien was probably the biggest disappointment for me. I had her pegged in my top 5 before the start of the pageant. Her modeling shots were so impressive but without all the photoshop, she wasn't as impressive. However, two solid performances in the preliminaries could still help her crack the top 15.

CZECH REPUBLIC: GABRIELA FRANKOVA ****

OK, I love this girl. I think she is absolutely gorgeous... her face is so angelic and she has an amazing body. I also think she had amazing energy on stage, something Europeans sometimes lacks. I'd love for her to make the cut on Sunday and will be disappointed if she misses the top 16.

Photos: www.missuniverse.com

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