Katarina Rodriguez has done the Philippines proud as she finished first runner-up in the recently-concluded Miss Intercontinental 2017.
A total of 66 candidates from around the globe competed at the grand coronation night held at Sunrise Garden Beach Resort & Spa in Hurghada, Egypt, Tuesday, January 24 (Egypt time).
It was Mexico's Verónica Salas Vallejo who was crowned Miss Intercontinental 2017.
Miss Netherlands Cathelijne Madelief Heppenhuis was 2nd runner-up. Miss Brazil Amanda Cardoso, Miss Colombia Lizeth Mendieta Villanueva, and Miss Korea Lee Su Jin took the third, fourth, and fifth slots.
The pageant also awarded continental queens: Katarina is Miss Intercontinental Asia, Miss Nigeria Abigail Esther Ejike is Miss Intercontinental Africa, Miss Netherlands Cathelijne Madelief Heppenhuis is Miss Intercontinental Europe, Miss Brazil Amanda Cardoso is Miss Intercontinental South America, and Miss Mexico Verónica Salas Vallejo is Miss Intercontinental North America.
During the Q&A portion, Katarina was asked: "What is the most important thing that you have learned about participating in Miss Intercontinental?"
To which the 24-year-old Filipino model replied: "The most important thing that I have learned while participating in this beauty pageant is actually an Arabic word, which is actually named after one of the Sunrise Resorts. It's called meraki. It means to do all things with passion, soul, and creativity.
"When I heard this word and the definition, it resonated with me, until now and for the rest of my life. Therefore, that is the most important thing that I've learned while participating in this pageant. Meraki, to do all things with soul, passion, and creativity."
The Top 18 semifinalists of Miss Intercontinental 2017 were Miss Nigeria Abigail Esther Ejike, Miss Egypt Tahani Hassan, Miss Australia Charlotte Allison-Bruce, Miss Japan Kumi Miyamae, and Miss Malaysia Sanja Suri Kishore Kumar Suri.
Also on the list were Miss Serbia Bojana Bojani, Miss Hungary Flóra Senánszky, Miss Russia Natalya Naydenko, Miss Czech Republic Sarah Karolyiová, Miss Dominican Republic Christina Gieringer Castillo, and Miss Jamaica Sasha Henry.
Miss Vietnam Nguyen Dang Tuong Linh earned a spot in the Top 18 as the winner of the People's Choice award.
Special awards were given to Miss Paraguay Jessica Torres for Best in Evening Gown, Miss Germany Dalila Jabri for Best Body, and Miss India Priyanka Kumari for Best in National Costume.
Miss Denmark Grace Gardner was voted Miss Congeniality, Miss Guadeloupe Marcie Melissa Monfret bagged Miss Photogenic, and Miss Poland Natalia Popis received the Face of Beauty award.
The Philippines has yet to win its first Miss Intercontinental title since the pageant began in 1971.
Other Filipino beauty queens who have made it to the Top 6 of the pageant were Christi Lynn McGarry in 2015, Kris Tiffany Janson in 2014, and Andrea Koreen Medina in 2013.
This story originally appeared on Pep.ph.
* Minor edits have been made by the Femalenetwork.com editors.