Miss Universe 2016 Iris Mittenaere was full of emotions about her return to the country that gave her the international crown last year, January 30.
The French beauty queen exclaimed, “I feel so happy to be here!
“It’s because of this country, because of the Philippines, that I’m Miss Universe!
“[Filipinos] are so welcoming and they were supporting me since the beginning!
“They still call me Miss France!
“So emotional to be here where everything started.”
Iris, together with Miss Universe 2017 Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters, Miss Canada Lauren Howe, Miss Malaysia Samantha Katie James, and Miss USA Kara Mccullough, arrived in the country on the invitation of the Department of Tourism.
“I’ve been waiting for this moment almost one year!” Iris told PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) during a brief press interview at the Jollibee Macapagal Biopolis Branch last December 7.
“I wanna travel more around the Philippines… I feel a little bit like home!
“I’m seeing Vigan and I’m saying, ‘I went there, I went there!’
“I’m so excited about everything!”
LIFE AFTER THE CROWN. Iris said her immediate itinerary after relinquishing the crown was reuniting with her family in France.
“I’m so happy because I really missed them during one year and I’m gonna be with them for the holidays!” the 24-year-old beauty queen said.
For her post-Miss Universe projects, Iris hinted at a series of television and modeling works, including a potential stint in the Philippines.
“I have a lot of projects... and maybe here.
“I’m gonna work on TV in France, a lot of modeling, too.
“So, I’m really excited.”
At the same time, Iris intends to finish her studies.
“More importantly, I’m going back to my dentistry school next September because I really want to finish my study.
“I think we can do everything. We’re strong women.
"So I’m going to continue finish my studies and continue to work as a model and TV host.