Get to know new Miss Universe PH Michelle Dee

Karl Cedrick Basco, ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 14 2023 02:16 AM | Updated as of May 15 2023 01:00 PM

Michelle Dee is crowned as Miss Universe Philippines 2023. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

MANILA – Pageant-savvy have Filipinos welcomed a new queen, with Michelle Dee of Makati being hailed as the Miss Universe Philippines 2023. 

Stars finally aligned for Dee on Saturday night as she successfully took the crown at the Mall of Asia Arena after two consecutive attempts in the competition. 

She bested 37 other candidates for the chance to represent the Philippines at one of the biggest international pageants, Miss Universe, in El Salvador. 

Dee is not new in the pageant scene as she has been competing for years already. Pageants run in her blood as she is the daughter of Miss International 1979 Melanie Marquez.

The 28-year-old queen is an award-winning actress as she was named Best Supporting Actress in the 36th PMPC Star Awards for Movies in 2021. 

The Psychology graduate from De La Salle University first rose to fame when she won the Miss World Philippines 2019 which earned her a ticket to the Miss World contest in England.

Dee finished in the Top 12 of the said competition.

Three years later, the advocate for autism awareness joined Miss Universe Philippines 2022. 

She was one of the frontrunners of the competition and claimed the Best in Evening Gown award. 

Dee reached the end of the coronation night but ultimately lost to eventual winner Celeste Cortesi and settled for the Miss Universe Philippines Tourism 2023 title. 

That did not stop the beauty queen from trying again as she surprised her fans when she submitted her application for the 2023 edition with #DeePaTapos. 

Her road to the crown suffered a setback when she revealed about undergoing an operation just several weeks before the coronation night.

"Just got out of the operating room. All is well and all love," she said on Instagram Stories.

While she did not give details about her condition, Dee reposted an article that said she was brought to the hospital due to "hemorrhage and bleeding." 

Fortunately, it did not affect her campaign in Miss Universe Philippines and she received multiple accolades during the preliminary competition. She received the following awards: Miss Pond's, Miss Aqua Boracay, and Miss Zion Philippines.

During the coronation night, Dee once again took home the Best in Evening Gown title before impressing the judges with her answers in the question and answer round. 

In the end, she successfully followed the footsteps of Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray as Pinay queens, who won both the Miss Universe Philippines and Miss World Philippines titles.