Two years ago, the winning models of Miss Argentina and Miss Puerto Rico met at the Miss Grand International beauty pageant. This weekend, they made their love public to the surprise of their followers, who shared their joy at the announcement.
Mariana Varela and Fabiola Valentín, Miss Argentina and Miss Puerto Rico, respectively, did not win but were part of the ten semifinalists of the contest that ended in March 2021 with the coronation of the American Abena Appiah after the dispute for the title among 63 candidates.
“After deciding to keep our relationship private, we opened our doors to you on a special day,” they both wrote in a joint post on their Instagram accounts. The clip showed images of their love story, moments of complicity, and last October 28, when they married.
Now that they decided to shout about their relationship to the world, the reactions from their followers and also from their colleagues on the catwalks were encouraging: “It’s the best thing that Miss Grand has left us”; “Congratulations, I didn’t believe it and not because of anything bad but because of the beautiful friendship. I hope you are very happy”; “Many blessings, may loving never be a crime,” they wrote.
Although they kept their love relationship a secret, in their social networks, they had already shown each other together, and their followers talked about a great friendship born in the contest. So far, the announcement video has accumulated more than 85,000 likes and 4,000 comments.
Who are the two models?
Mariana Varela is 26 years old, was born in Buenos Aires, and was recognized as Miss Argentina in 2019, but was unsuccessful at Miss Universe, where she failed to make it into the top 20 favorites. In the 2020 Miss Grand International, she achieved a sixth place among the 63 competitors, the best position for an Argentine competitor in this pageant.
For her part, Puerto Rican Fabiola Valentin, 22, was among the three favorites to win her country’s pageant in 2019, and at the Grand International, she finished eighth.
Miss Grand International has existed since 2013 when Thai presenter Nawat Itsaragrisil began pushing for the pageant’s organization. Today he is its president. The coronation is held in that country and is part of a franchise that includes the national pageant. According to the founders, the competition had a pacifist objective, intending to send a message amid political conflicts.
“You, my road that looks like home. I got you. Now I’m in no hurry. You are becoming my safe place”, says the song by Puerto Rican Jay Wheeler that they chose for the clip that announced their relationship.
According to local media, the wedding between Mariana Varela and Fabiola Valentín took place at the Judicial Center in San Juan, Puerto Rico. On June 26, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court declared that it is unconstitutional to ban same-sex marriage.
The union between the Argentinean and Puerto Rican models coincides with the celebration of Pride Week in Buenos Aires.
Meanwhile, through the official Facebook account of the contest, they published a congratulatory message for the couple.