Another Cebuana beauty queen will join Bb. Pilipinas; also eyes MUP crown

By: Cris Evert B. Lato-Ruffolo January 05,2019 - 01:36 PM


Mutya ng Pilipinas 2017 Ilene Astrid de Vera / Photo from De Vera’s blogsite

CEBU CITY, Philippines — This may just be the year for Cebu as the country’s most prestigious national pageant will have another Cebuana beauty queen vying for a crown.

Mutya ng Pilipinas 2017 Ilene Astrid de Vera, 23, confirmed  she is training under Rodgil Flores of Kagandahang Flores in Manila in preparation for her participation in Binibining Pilipinas 2019.

De Vera, who hails from Cebu and a Mass Communication graduate of the University of the Philippines Cebu, is also under the tutelage of Cebu’s Jonas Borces.

De Vera’s confirmation came a day after another Cebuana beauty queen, Binibining Cebu Tourism 2017 Samantha Ashley Lo informed CDN Digital she is now in training for Bb. Pilipinas 2019 under Jonas Gaffud’s Aces and Queens. She hopes to win the Bb. Pilipinas Universe title.

De Vera, in an interview with CDN Digital on Saturday, January 5, said she decided to join Binibining Pilipinas 2019 last February 2018 but she only started training in August 2018 after she turned over her crown as Mutya ng Pilipinas.

De Vera finished as fourth runner-up in the Miss Asia Pacific International 2017 pageant held at the Resorts World Manila in Parañaque City.

“This was because I still had to finish my responsibilities as a reigning queen and help out in both organizations,” she said.

De Vera said joining Binibining Pilipinas is the longest preparation that she ever did for a pageant.

“This time around, I want to be 101 percent ready. I want to be ready in all aspects: physcally, mentally, emotionally, financially and spiritually. It’s a really big help that I already have built wide and stable connection here in Manila ever since I decided to move here last 2017,” she said.

De Vera was the first person named by Norman Tinio, one of the country’s top pageant blogger and expert, in his #BinibiniWishList2019.

“I can feel that this Mutya Ng Pilipinas 2017 titleholder is keen on pushing the envelope further this year. With one national title already tucked under her belt, a second one would be most welcome,” said Tinio.

Tinio said experience has been De Vera’s best teacher and “her learnings will definitely prove useful in the months to come.”

De Vera said Tinio’s endorsement serves as a motivation for her to work harder in winning a crown.

“I feel really honored to be recognized once again by Tito Norman since he is one of the country’s top pageant bloggers and he puts out very credible facts and opinions,” she said.

De Vera met Tinio in 2017 when she join Mutya ng Pilipinas, her first national pageant. She said Tinio witnessed how she started in ths pageant industry.

“Being the first #WishMiss posted on his list puts a heavy weight on my shoulder as well. But only means that he truly believes in my capabilities and sees a lot of potential in me,” she said.

De Vera admitted that Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray had set the bar high for the next line of beauty queens and that it will be a fact that all “Binibining Pilipinas aspirants have to face.”

“But this only means that through hard work, determination and perseverance, you can achieve whatever your heart desires,” she told CDN Digital.

De Vera said it helps that a beauty queen workz with the right people, “who will be there for you throughout the whole journey.”

“Winning a pageant is not done by a single person. It takes a village and timing plays a very important role in winning. If it’s your time, it’s your time,” she said.

De Vera maintains a personal blog,, where she wrote that she is pursuing her dreams as blogger, live and TV host, broadcaster, presidential spokesperson and UN ambassador.

Asked which crown she is eyeing for, De Vera replied: “I don’t want to settle for anything less than the Miss Universe Philippines crown.”/elb

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TAGS: Bb Pilipinas 2019, Cebu City, Cebuana beauty queens, Ilene de Vera, Mutya ng Pilipinas 2017

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