Herald News


10 Oct 2017 07:23am IST
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10 Oct 2017 07:23am IST
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Maria Alysia Gomes recently represented India and brought home the crown of ‘Major Intercontinental Beauty Queen 2017’, at the pageant organised by Reina Costa Rica Intercontinental at Panama. Maria Alysia shares her journey from Goa to the Republic of Panama

‘When one door closes, another door opens,’ is a quote

that applies perfectly well to the story of Maria Alysia

Gomes. A young girl from Cuncolim, Maria Alysia

was heartbroken when she was told that she was not

selected for the Miss India pageant due to her height of

5’3”. However, she was meant for grander success. She

recently returned to Goa, wearing the crown of ‘Major

Intercontinental Beauty Queen 2017’.

The daughter of Maria Lilafer and Altinho Gomes

and youngest sister to Lavesh and Aysander, Maria had

dreamt of representing India at an international level, and

this pageant came as a complete surprise. She won the

overall crown of ‘Queen Beyond Beauty’ held at Panama.

Organised by Reina Costa Rica Intercontinental, she had

to undergo week long training and interaction for the

international pageant, where she was judged on the basis

of every move that she made. She also won two titles,

‘Miss Beautiful body’ and ‘Best National Outfit’, which was

designed by Goan designer, Melvyn Noronha.

“I was into modelling right from my college days at

Parvatibai Chowgule College of Arts & Science, Margao

and I walked the ramp for many Goan designers,

including Verma D’Mello. During one of these college

events, a selection for candidates for Miss India was held,

where I was selected for the first round. Unfortunately,

for the second round, I got a call from their New

Delhi office, to inform that I didn’t meet their height

requirements, which was a minimum of 5’7’,” says Maria

Alysia .

Se further adds, “Fortunately for me, I came

across Melvyn Noronha, who has been more than a

mentor to me. He informed me that the Reina Petite

Intercontinental 2017 would be held in New Delhi,

and this was the competition for me, as it is for shorter

women. I had nothing to go on with, and had to research

and study everything on my own. It is a great thing that

we can find information on social media and I could

prepare myself with the walk, grooming and etiquette.”

Maria Alysia went on to win the Reina Petite

Intercontinental 2017 title in New Delhi and was

nominated to represent India for the gala intercontinental

beauty contest in Panama. “It was not an easy task, and it

is completely different from our image of the modelling

world. For the week that I was in New Delhi, we had to

make videos and presentations. One of the challenges

was a wearing a 13” pair of heels and modelling without

falling down,” she says with a confident smile as she won

the titles of Miss Fitness and Miss Wellness at New Delhi.

She was crowned by the first Miss India.

In New Delhi, Maria Alysia competed against 15 Indian

girls, while in Panama her competition was against 33

candidates. “A beauty pageant can be emotionally and

physically taxing as you are judged on every detail. I was

judged for my empathy while visiting cancer patients.

The CEO of RCRI Conceptos, Jose Vasconez is a cancer

survivor and the pageant supports the cancer cause,” says


Her national costume was designed by Melvyn

Noronha who pays great attention to finer details of a

costume. As a trained Bharatnatyam dancer, her costume

emphasised the Bharatnatyam style with the bright

colours of orange and yellow, which represent India.

“The outer portion

of the piece that

accompanied my gown

was influenced by the

Tau Cross, also known

as the St Francis Cross,”

adds Maria.

Maria has

completed her Masters

in Sociology at Goa

University, and is

currently working for

a dance company,

‘Dance - O-Philia’,

based in Panjim. She

specialises in jazz,

contemporary, ballet

and Latin dances.

Her father, Altinho,

accompanied her all

the way to Panama,

to give her the moral

support that she

required for her first

international pageant.

Now back home, she

is looking forward to

the weekend when she

can join her family in Cuncolim, and cook her father’s

favourite meal, a piping hot delicious chicken pie, filled

with lots of love and gratitude.
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