71st Miss Universe runner-up Amanda Dudamel receives warm homecoming

Miss Universe Venezuela 2022 Amanda Dudamel Newman may have considered Wednesday, February 1 as one of the most special days of her life when she arrived back in Mérida — her home state in the Andes mountains, northwestern Venezuela.

The 23-year-old fashion designer received a warm homecoming as she paraded in the main city streets to the Government Palace where she was greeted by folk dancers and a symphony orchestra. She then went out to the balcony and addressed her delighted supporters.

"To you, my beautiful people, and to this adored city that saw me born, grow, and set out, I owe you so much and thank you so much," she posted on social media.

"Everything we experienced today was surreal, I still feel like I'm dreaming. But it's true, we're dreaming together. Because that's exactly what it's all about, dreaming big and making each of our goals a reality," she added.

The Venezuelan pride placed first runner-up during the 71st Miss Universe pageant which was held on January 14 in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA.

During the Top 3 final Q&A round, she replied with an iconic statement "I’m a fashion designer by profession, but I’m a designer of dreams as a woman” to the question "If you win the Miss Universe, how would you demonstrate this as an empowering and progressive organization?"

She also said in her answer: “If I get to win Miss Universe, I will follow the legacy that many women across the universe [have shown] to be part of this organization because Miss Universe has demonstrated that they choose women who inspire with their messages and transform with their actions. And that’s precisely what I would like to do."

Amanda achieved her country's highest placement since Gabriela Isler won Miss Universe 2013 in Moscow, Russia. She is also the 20th Miss Venezuela to pull off a runner-up finish at the prestigious international pageant.

Photos: Amanda Dudamel / Instagram


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