Ariella Arida is 3rd Runner-up in Miss Universe 2013

The Philippines’ Ariella Arida was third runner up as Miss Venezuela Gabriela Isler was crowned Miss Universe 2013 during the coronation night held at the Crocus City Hall in Moscow, Russia on November 9 (November 10, Philippine time).

American television presenter Thomas Roberts who co-hosted the final with ex-Spice Girl Melanie Brown, dedicated the show to the people suffering from Typhoon “Yolanda” (international name: Haiyan) in the Philippines.

Gabriela, a 25-year-old TV personality from Maracay bested 85 rivals. She was asked by Judge Steven Tyler on her biggest fear and how she plans to overcome it. Her reply was to overcome all fears to become a stronger person to be able to face any challenge.

For her part, Ariella replied to the question asked to her that education was the solution to the lack of jobs among young people starting their careers around the world.  She added education is a primary source and a ticket for a better future. She was the only finalist to answer in English and did not use an interpreter.

Ariella dedicated her victory to her fellow Filipinos who lost so much because of the monster typhoon. Her fourth place finish gave the Philippines a glimmer of hope two days after the world’s strongest super typhoon devastated Visayas. A few weeks ago, Bohol and Cebu, provinces were also struck by a 7.2 magnitude earthquake.

Early in the competition, Ariella was widely tipped to take the crown as she’s been critics’ favorite during the preliminaries. The 24-year-old University of the Philippines Chemistry graduate was also one of the 27 contestants to be chosen by Tony Ward Couture to model its creations in Moscow’s Mercedes Benz Fashion Week on October 26. She was also handpicked to be the only Asian to grace the Mercedes Benz TV commercial along with five other girls.

The other winners in the top 5 were Miss Spain, 1st runner-up; Miss Ecuador, 2nd runner-up; and Miss Brazil, 4th runner-up. Host country Russia was eliminated early to the dissatisfaction of the audience.

The judges for the pageant were Aerosmith singer Steven Tyler, Russian pop king Philipp Kirkorov, Chef Nobu, Ice skating gold medalist Tara Lipinski, Italo Fontana, model Anne V, Carol Alt and Farouk Shami.

In 1969 the Miss Universe crown was won by Gloria Diaz, while Margie Moran won in 1973. Only recently Megan Young won the Miss World 2013 title going down in Miss World’s 62-year history as the first-ever Filipina to win the title. Earlier, Mutya Johanna Datul was hailed Miss Supranational at the coronation night held in Belarus’ Sports Palace on September 6.