MANILA, Philippines — The coliseum energy may not be felt on the boobtube screen, but emotions were really high that it permeated the air, as Angelica Lopez was crowned Binibining Pilipinas International 2023 by outgoing queen Nicole Borromeo and reigning Miss International Jasmin Selberg.
With the audience rooting for another finalist to win the crown, the Palaweña beauty queen was herself agape when her number was called.
Anna Valencia Lakrini of Bataan was crowned Binibining Pilipinas Globe and will compete with other international delegates in Tirana, Albania later this year. She was awarded Best in Swimsuit and Jag Denim Queen earlier in the evening.
The members of the royal court are Katrina Anne Johnson of Davao del Sur and Atasha Reign Parani of Cavite as runners-up in descending order. The other delegates who made it to the final round were Lea Macapagal (Dinalupihan, Bataan), Trisha Martinez (Laguna) who also won as Best in Gown, Miss Ever Bilena, and Miss PAL; Mary Chiles Balana (Hermosa, Bataan), winner of Miss Friendship; Jessielen Salvador (Aklan), Kiaragel Gregorio (Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija), Jeanne Isabelle Bilasano (Albay), winner of the Best National Costume; and Loraine Jara (Bulacan), named Miss Bingo Plus, and picked out by the corporate sponsor as the 11th finalist.
The other recipients of the special awards were Julia Mae Mendoza (Face of Binibini), Candy Vollinger (Miss Talent), April Angelu Barro (Miss Pizza Hut), and Sharmaine Magdasoc (Manila Bulletin Readers’ Choice).
After losing the Grand International and InterContinental franchises to the ALV Pageant Circle and Mutya ng Pilipinas organization, respectively, the Binibining Pilipinas Charities Inc. (BPCI) has the International and Globe franchises remaining in what used to be an extensive roster of beauty titles.
Until 2010, the Binibining Pilipinas pageant chose the country’s representative to the Miss World. It crowned its last Miss Universe delegate in 2019 with Gazini Ganados, as well as its last Miss Supranational delegate with Resham Saeed. Last year, BPCI crowned Gabrielle Basiano as its last Binibining Pilipinas InterContinental queen and Roberta Tamondong as the last Binibini to be sent as delegate to the Miss Grand International finals.
Yet despite these many changes, the Binibining Pilipinas pageant has remained as the country’s most sought-after title by hopefuls and aspirants each year. It has brought its colorful history, and legacy, into the consciousness of 21st century pageantry; most especially with hard-core fans and aficionados. And production wise, it has mounted another stellar show as expected.
This year’s panel of judges was composed of Olympian Hidilyn Diaz, Engr. William Vincent Marcos, Miss International 2022 Jasmin Selberg, restaurateur Peter Zwiener, actor Piolo Pascual, vlogger Small Laude, mag editor Anton San Diego, thespian Dolly de Leon, SB 19’s Josh Cullen, and Manila mayor Hon. Honey Lacuna as chairman.
Angelica Lopez will have a year to prepare for her turn to represent the Philippines in the Tokyo-based pageant next year, which we heard might be held in Bacolod City if plans push through. Meanwhile, outgoing queen Nicole Borromeo will be representing the country at the Miss International finals on October 26 in Japan.
Hosted by Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray, Miss Grand International 2026 1st runner up Nicole Cordoves, and Binibining Pilipinas Universe 2014 MJ Lastimosa, with guest appearances by Vice Ganda and Darren Espanto, the 59th Binibining Pilipinas grand coronation night was beamed live to a global audience from the Smart Araneta Coliseum in Araneta City via the Binibining Pilipinas channel on YouTube.