Monday, January 3, 2011

Miss Tourism goes Dutch

A 21-year-old law student from the Netherlands, Nathalie Dekker, did the Dutch proud on New Year's Eve.

She beat 54 other contestants from all around the world to win the main title at theMiss Tourism International 2010 pageant, held at the Sunway Hotel.

A triumphant Dekker said she was excited and relieved to have bagged the title.

"There are so many emotions running through me at the moment. I went on stage tonight without any expectations and I actually won," she said.

Dekker said even if she did not win, she would still treasure every moment of her stay in Malaysia and would would be back to visit.

Dekker, is also socially concious. 

She helps take care of elderly people on weekends back home and  hopes to use her new title to create awareness on the needs of the elderly. 

The runner-ups of the pageant were Holly-Anne Visser from Australia, who bagged the Miss Tourism Metropolitan title, and Stephany Gonzalez from Venezuela, who won the Miss Tourism Global International title.

The Miss Tourism Cosmopolitan title went to Barbara Salvador from The Philippines while the Dreamgirl of the Year title went to Borgolgin Bayarsaikhan from Mongolia.

Our very own Miss Malaysia, Gabrielle Boudville, won the Best National Costume for her "princess-like" outfit.

A record 55 beauties participated in this year's event.

Franchise owner for the event, Datuk Danny Ooi, said this made it a record in the pageant's history.

He added that the pageant, which began in 1994,  was to promote goodwill and understanding among different cultures and nations, rather than to compete with each other.

"Everyone's a winner tonight, as each and every one of them goes back with friends from all over the world," he said.

The participants include those from Argentina, Costa Rica, Australia and Mexico. 

The 14th event in the pageant's history was emceed by the multilingual and good humoured Datuk Mahadzir Lokman. - By Steven Patrick

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