MANILA -- After spending over two months in Thailand as the first runner-up of Miss Grand International, Samantha Bernardo is finally back home.
The Philippines' representative in the pageant is "beyond grateful" for the warmth and hospitality she has received from the Miss Grand International organization, saying she had "the best time of my life" with them.
"This is not a goodbye, just hello and see you soon!" she said in an Instagram post on Wednesday night as she shared a photo of her with Miss Grand International president Nawat Itsaragrisil.
In another post which showed her in her pre-departure outfit, Bernardo hinted: "Great things are yet to come."
Photos of Bernardo about to leave Thailand were also shared on Miss Grand International's Facebook page, with the organization "full of lovely vibes" as it sends off the Filipina beauty queen.
On Thursday morning, Binibining Pilipinas Charities Inc. shared a video of Bernardo addressing the national organization's founder, Stella Marquez-Araneta, as she marks her return to Manila.
"Thank you so much for all the love and support of Bb. Pilipinas headed by you, and for giving me the opportunity to represent Philippines. It's such an honor and privilege, and this is like a graduation for me in pageantry," she said.
"We've been taken care of [by] Mr. Nawat [and] Ms. Teresa, and all the MGI staff are all so kind to me. And I hope that this can mend all the conflicts in the past. And I hope the next Miss Philippines can really win the MGI crown," she added.
During her stay in Thailand, Bernardo got to mix work and play as she visited beaches, bars, and historical sites while promoting the country's tourism.
She also dropped by the Philippine Embassy in Thailand and met with members of the Filipino community there.