This 2019 marks the 56th year of the Binibining Pilipinas pageant. And after winning two international titles with the previous year’s batch, the Binibining Pilipinas Charities Incorporated is set to gear up for another year of pulchritude.
But what makes the Binibining Pilipinas pageant the best national pageant in the country? Why do pageant girls and hopefuls see themselves drawn to this annual competition? Why do pageant fans flock to Cubao every year to get a glimpse of the candidates and winners?
That is what we will be exploring on today’s post!
1. Binibining Pilipinas History
With its 56 years of existnce, the pageant has ingrained itself as part of Philippine culture. No other competition of such nature comes close. Filipinos are glued to their TV sets or are at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum to watch the yearly spectacle.
In the Philippines, you cannot say pageants without ever mentioning the Bb. Pilipinas competition. It has became an institution in itself as it has produced not just quality winners but it has survived franchise takeovers, years of non-placements in the most coveted international tilt, shocking dethronements and resignations, and much more. Its ability to stand tests of time with stamina has rewarded the pageant with loyal supporters and fans.
But much more than that are the personal stories that surround the lives that the pageant has touched. The pageant’s annual charity contributions to its beneficiaries adds to the goodwill surrounding the pageant.
2. Miss Universe Franchise
Arguably one of the reasons why the pageant has remained at the top of mind of pageant connoisseurs and fans is because of the Miss Universe franchise held by the BPCI. The MU pageant is the biggest international pageant in existence and that is also the reason why it lends much prestige to the annual national competition.
The Philippines is a Miss Universe country that is for certain. If we aren’t mistaken, the Binibining Pilipinas Charities Incorporated is one of the countries outside of the United States owned Miss USA that have acquired the Miss Universe franchise the longest (Venezuela and France since 1952, and Colombia since 1958). Madame Stella Marquez-Araneta and the Bb. Pilipinas organization has held the franchise since 1964. That longevity of relationship is a reason why it is difficult to imagine BBP without the Miss Universe title.
But of course the MU pageant benefits as well from the BBP, no other national pageant can guarantee a high level of professionalism and longevity as the BPCI can give.
3. Strong Leadership of the Binibining Pilipinas Charities, Inc.
This is perhaps why the pageant has endured through the years. Call the pageant’s executive committee as conservative and clinging to old-world rules of decorum, but it is that strong adherence to rules that allows it to survive the years. The pageant has placed high qualifications for its candidates and winners and it is for that reason why the BPCI becomes stronger each year that passes by.
Without the strong leadership of Madame Stella Marquez-Araneta, Conchitina Sevilla-Bernardo and the rest of the past and present BPCI committee, it would not have produced 4 Miss Universe winners, 5 Misses International, and countless other international titleholders, runners up, semi-finalists and special awardees.
4. Quality of Winners and Candidates
There is no debate that the best Filipina beauty queens are products of the BBP search. Showbiz royalties like Liza Lorena, Gloria Diaz, Lotis Key, Pilar Pilapil, Elvie Gonzales, Jean Saburit, Alice Dixson, Tetchie Agbayani, Susan Africa and many more have started their careers from joining the annual tilt. Not only that, past winners like Margie Moran, Aurora Pijuan, Yedda Marie Mendoza-Kittilstvedt, Daisy Reyes and many more have found themselves in public service through fine arts, the performing arts, charity work or politics. Other winners have taken the less beaten path like Zorayda Ruth Andam who became a lawyer, Lizbeth de Padua who is a Neuro-surgeon, Abbygale Arenas who is one of the country’s leading image consultants, Vida Doria who was an entrepreneur and designer, and of course Nelia Sancho who was a women’s rights activist. The roster of BBP winners have achieved so much more with their titles.
No questions can be raised either on the quality of candidates it churns out year after year. The creme de la creme of pageant girls and hopefuls always try for a Binibining Pilipinas crown. So high are the standards at BBP that semifinalists and runners up of the pageant end up as winners on other national competitions. Surely, you can name just a few crossovers from BBP to other national pageants that even won internationally.
5. The Bb. Pilipinas Brand
There is no other national pageant in the Philippines that commands the same brand power and collective goodwill as that of the Bb. Pilipinas pageant. The sum of all its history, winners and candidates, leadership and charity, urban legend and fan admiration are all amalgamated to its strong brand equity. So powerful is the Binibini brand that you can line it up with the likes of the Miss USA, Miss Venezuela and Concurso Nacional de Belleza of Colombia in terms of branding and image.
Even other MU national directors are in admiration with how the BBP is run that others have adapted some of the rules and qualifications to join their national pageants from BPCI’s stringent rules. Now that is testament to how strong the BBP name is.
Those are five of what we deem as reasons why the Bb. Pilipinas pageant is the national pageant with the strongest brand recall and brand equity in the country. Prestige, brand equity, respect and admiration… the Binibining Pilipinas has all that in spades.