A Filipina beauty queen was crowned Miss Tourism International 2019 held in Malaysia Friday night.
Cyrille Payumo, 20, of Porac, Pampanga, is the fifth Filipina to win in the 25-year-old beauty pageant. She also won the Best in National Costume special award.
Other winners were:Ukraine, Miss Tourism Global; Poland, Miss Tourism Cosmopolitan; Indonesia, Miss Tourism Queen of the Year; Cambodia, Dream Girl of the Year; and Thailand, Miss Southeast Asia.
It was a sentimental moment for Payumo who from the start was not the original Filipino contestant for the Miss Tourism International beauty pageant.
Payumo finished as first runner-up when she competed in the 51st Mutya Pilipinas beauty contest held at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City last August 18.
Tyra Goldman of Nevada then won Mutya Pilipinas Tourism International, earning her the right to compete in the contest in Malaysia.
But organizers of the Miss Tourism International disqualified Goldman when they found out that Goldman was not born in the Philippine but in the US.
“They don’t have anything against candidates with dual citizenships but they want someone who was born in the Philippines,” said Cory Quirino, Mutya Pilipinas president. Thus, Payumo was sent to the competition abroad.
Quirino said Goldman who is based in the US will compete in another international pageant early next year.
The Miss Tourism International pageant is usually held on New Year’s Eve. But in 2017, organizers changed its format and decided to stage it before Christmas.
Previous Filipino beauty queens who won in the same pageant were: Jannie Loudette Alipo-on (2017), Angeli Dione Gomez (2013), the late Rizzini Alexis Gomez (2012), and Maria Esperanza Manzano (2000).