Thailand to host Miss Universe 2018 as pageant returns to Asia

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 31 2018 06:46 PM | Updated as of Jul 31 2018 09:07 PM

Miss Universe South Africa 2017 Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters gestures in a traditional greeting during a news conference announcing Thailand as the host country. Athit Perawongmetha, Reuters

This year's Miss Universe pageant will be held in Thailand, it was announced this Tuesday. 

The new host country was revealed at a press conference held in Bangkok, attended by Miss Universe Organization president Paula Shugart and current titleholder Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters. 

It is the third time that Thailand will host the competition, with the last time being back in 2005. 

It is also the second time in three years that it will be held in Asia, after Manila played host in 2016. 

The 2018 pageant is scheduled on December 17 (Manila time) at the Muang Thong Thani complex in Nonthaburi, according to a report from the Bangkok Post.

The Philippines is fielding Catriona Gray in its bid to win its fourth crown. 

Gray expressed her excitement in competing for the title in Thailand, calling the country "one of her favorite travel destinations."