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Mrs Vietnam is crowned Mrs Universe in a glitzy event in Durban

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An ecstatic Mrs Vietnam was crowned Mrs Universe in a glittering event at Durban’s Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre (ICC) last night (2 September 2017).

43-year old Tram Hoang Luu burst into tears as last year’s winner, Olga Tornor from Austria, handed over the crown at the 40th Annual Mrs Universe pageant, held for the first time in Africa. Mrs Vietnam triumphed over 84 international contestants to clinch the coveted title.

“I am so amazed. I did not expect to win when I came here this evening because all the contestants are such incredible women,” says the new Mrs Universe, Luu. This evening is just fantastic – I’m enjoying every moment!” Luu thanks South African and particularly Durban for its warm hospitality saying the people are so friendly and she is going to miss being here.

Mrs Gabon, Gwen Madiba Moubouyi was named First Runner-Up and Mrs Pakistan, Taiba Noorulian Sheheryar was Second Runner-up. Mrs France, Anastasia Gorshkova and Mrs India, Shaveta Athwal, rounded off the top five. South Africa was represented by Durban wife and mum, Trisha Poona, who was placed in the top 25. Poona was the audience favourite, receiving huge applause and encouragement whenever she appeared on stage.

“Let tonight be the night that Durban remembers as being the night that brought the world to our doorstep. Let tonight be the night that Africa celebrates its women and women empowerment,”
says Tracey-Anne Aggett, the woman who was responsible for bringing Mrs Universe to Africa for the first time. As Mrs Universe Hosting Director: Africa, Aggett had campaigned tirelessly to bring the activist-themed event to South Africa and to use it as a platform to draw attention to the global scourge of violence against women and children.

“We are extremely humbled by the support we’ve received to stage this event on African soil for the first time. Each of the contestants here tonight is a winner – for overcoming incredible odds to succeed and for making meaningful contributions to their respective communities to bring about positive change.”

Ethekwini Deputy Mayor, Fawzia Peer, echoed those sentiments when she officially welcomed guests to the pageant. “As women, we must continue to hold each other’s hands and celebrate our
successes,” she said, adding “We need to see more women rising to positions of power in business, politics and academia.”

The glitzy Mrs Universe World Finals attracted the who’s who of KZN’s social scene. Guests were entertained by proudly KZN performers including the C-Live dancers, the Champions Pantsula Dancers, performers from the Kumari Shiksha Dance Institute, Indlondlo Zulu Traditional Dancers and Dangerous Curves dancers. Vocalists, Samantha Landers, Bongekile Mabaso and Nokulunga Ntuli had feet tapping and heads bobbing. The show was produced and choreographed by one of KZN’s most celebrated entertainers, Clive Gumede aka The Durban Divo.

Since jetting into Durban on 25 August 2017, the 86 finalists have had a jam-packed, whirlwind schedule of work and play that put the international spotlight firmly on South Africa. In addition to visiting a few must-see tourist spots in the greater Durban area and sampling the city’s array of culinary offerings, contestants dedicated their time to numerous CSI and women empowerment initiatives.

This included visiting schools to speak to young girls about the importance of education and to inspire pupils with personal stories of overcoming incredible challenges, to spending a morning with orphaned and vulnerable children at Liv Village in Verulam, to taking to the streets of Durban for the #OneVoice march against gender-based violence and child abuse.

Unlike other similar events, Mrs Universe is a women empowerment initiative that acknowledges married women between the ages of 25 and 45 who are doing phenomenal work to uplift and enhance their local communities through CSI initiatives, business development and global trade opportunities.

“Our heartfelt thanks goes out to our sponsors who have made this first-for-Africa event possible,” says Aggett. “They are Arctic Club, Beluga, Blythedale Coastal Estate, Chicken Xpress, Cubana, Dax Martin Luxury Swim, Elan Property Group, Ethekwini Municipality, Extramarks, Fabric & Bridal, Gerald Wells Hair & Beauty Professionals, HEH Signs, Kryolan, Le-Fem, Phezulu Safari Park, Pura Beverage Company, Red, Riverside Hotel, Serendipity Travel, Sir Fruit, Skye Radio, Soda & Sand, Stabus, Sunlife Vitamins, Taco Zulu, Take Note Trading 61, uShaka Marine World, Vision Division, Vodacom and Weekend Witness. We couldn’t have done it without you!”

The contestants begin heading home from today.

Images: Abhi Indrarajan

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Entertainment

Diarise these upcoming Old Town Italy events

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Don’t miss out on Old Town Italy’s upcoming events:

Pizza Making Class

We’re happy to let you know that Old Town Italy will be hosting regular Pizza Making Classes from Thursday, 17 June! 🍕
Old Town Italy brings you an evening filled with Antipasto’s, their house wine and an experience to create your own masterpiece with their esteemed chefs, for R325 per person🥂

🇮🇹 Book at Umhlanga between 5pm – 8pm.
gm-umhlanga@oldtown.co.za | 031 566 5008

Upcoming Classes:
15 July
19 August

——————

24 June – La Dolce Vino

Join Old Town Italy for yet another incredible wine & dinner pairing, hosted at their Old Town Italy stores alongside Steenberg Wine Farm 🍷

Bring your Amico’s along and prepare to be taken on a wine journey, exploring 5 wines of which Steenberg has carefully selected to offer from their range of wines, paired with an exciting menu, curated by their in-house chef.

Allow the live entertainment to ease you into an evening filled with famiglia, fun & festivity 🎷
The evening begins promptly at 6pm on Thursday, 24 June

See the Menu below;

🥂 Welcome Drink
Steenberg Sparkling Sauvignon Blanc

🍴 La Minestra
Roasted Tomato and Red Bell Pepper La Minestra
Served with Parmesan Grissini
🍷 Steenberg Sauvignon Blanc

🍴 Antipasti Board
A Selection of Imported Italian Cheeses and Cured Meats.
Served with Traditional Sides
🍷 Steenberg Nebbiolo

🍴 Fesa di Agnello
Grilled Lamb Rump
Served with Cauliflower, Baby Peas & Marrow Ribbon Salad
Finished off with Mint Gremolata
🍷 Steenberg Merlot

🍴 Dolce
Classic Tiramisu.
Served with Wild Strawberry, Balsamic and Pink Peppercorn Compote.
🍷 Steenberg 1682 Pinot Noir Cap Classique

Tickets are R425 per person. 🇮🇹

Bookings are essential.
Make your booking at your favourite store below:
gm-umhlanga@oldtown.co.za | 031 566 5008

——————

3 July – Cake & Prosecco

Join Old Town Italy on the first Saturday of every month for a fun Cake-Decorating class, hosted by renowned bakers at their adored Old Town Italy stores.

Start your morning at 10am, where you will learn a series of cake decorating techniques while sipping on refreshing Prosecco.

This class is R750 per person & includes your own cake to decorate and take home, Prosecco and a selection of Old Town High Tea treats.

Upcoming dates & themes:
3 July – Naked Cake w/ Rice Paper Flower
7 Aug – Buttercream Flower

Bookings can be made below:
Umhlanga
gm-umhlanga@oldtown.co.za | 031 566 5008

——————

9 July – Pasta Making Class

Enjoy a Pasta Making Class at Old Town Italy  Umhanga from 6pm for just R325 per person.
Grab your wine-loving partner and come join for a fun and pasta-filled evening.

On arrival, you’ll enjoy a light antipasto to warm the appetite as well as a bottle of wine to share during the class. Next, their head chef will teach you how to cook like an Italian and finally, prepare your homemade creation for you to enjoy in-store!

Seats are limited to 12 pax and booking is essential:
Here’s our calendar for the rest of 2021:
9 July | Spinach & Ricotta Tortellini
13 August | Tomato Fettuccine Pasta
10 September | Cavatelli Pasta
8 October | Sacchetti Pasta
12 November | Manicotti Pasta
10 December | Fusili al Ferretto

Bookings can be made below:
gm-umhlanga@oldtown.co.za / 031 566 5008

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Entertainment

The Durban Gin & Tonic Experience

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The Durban Gin & Tonic Experience is supported by Hall & Bramley is guaranteed to be an unforgettable day out. Bringing you the best Gins and Mixers with Live Artists performing to keep you entertained.

Tickets include entry in to the event as well as a complimentary Festival Gin glass.

WHEN:
Saturday 8 May 2021
Gates open at 12:00
Event ends at 18:00

WHERE:
Northwood Crusaders.
The perfect setting for a Saturday sundowner in the picturesque lawns.

HOW MUCH:
Please note tickets are limited to 500 so get yours early to avoid disappointment.
Early Bird – R160
General Admission – R180
Add a picnic hamper for R150

Tickets available at Webtickets:

THE IMPORTANT STUFF:
This event is strictly over 18 – leave the kids at home
No own food or drink is permitted in to the venue
No weapons, drugs or illegal substances are permitted in to the venue
There will be cash and card facilities at the Cash Loading station
Don’t drink and drive – Arrive aliveCovid-19 protocols will be in place to make the event a safe environment for all in attendance with plenty of space for social distancing and sanitising stations. Don’t forget your face masks and personal sanitiser.

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Entertainment

La Dolce Vino – Old Town Italy Umhlanga

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We are excited to announce that Old Town Italy’s La Dolce Vino evening will be happening every last Thursday of every month!

  • R425 per person
  • Start time: 6pm
  • Live entertainment
  • Last Thursday of every month

Why not indulge in Old Town Italy’s 4-course authentic Italian dinner menu, carefully paired with immaculate wines from the renowned Buitenverwachting wine farm, nestled in Constantia? 🍷

From 6pm you can be prepared to be taken on a culinary journey, with live entertainment to keep you entertained throughout the evening 🎶

View their delicious menu below:
🍴GRISSINI AL POMODORO
Black Garlic Grissini,
Topped with Al Pomodoro
🍷Buitenverwachting Rosé

🍴CHEF’S BOARD
A Selection of Imported Italian Cured Meat, Cheeses and Preserves
🍷Buitenverwachting Sauvignon Blanc

🍴SECONDI
Hand-Made Short Rib Tortelloni
Braised in Sangiovese And Napolitana Sauce with Gremolata
🍷Buitenverwachting Meifort

🍴DOLCE
Dark Chocolate Gelato Served with Millionaires Crumble
🍷Buitenverwachting Little Richard
Tickets are R425 per person. 🇮🇹

Bookings are essential:
Email: gm-umhlanga@oldtown.co.za
Phone: 031 566 5008
Online booking: https://bit.ly/2PIaKa5

 

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