World Travel Market was treated to a large sprinkling of glamour on day two as 120 finalists from Miss World beauty pageant made a special guest appearance to present a donation from the World Travel Awards to water aid charity Just a Drop.
All 120 contestants from the forthcoming Miss World 2009 beauty pageant headed to the Excel exhibition centre as part of the “Beauty with a Purpose” campaign.
Pictured left, Graham Cooke, President and Founder, World Travel Awards, presents the donation to Chairman of World Travel Market and Chairman and Founder of international water aid charity, Just a Drop, Fiona Jeffery - with a glamorous backdrop of Miss World Finalists
The collection for Just a Drop was made at the World Travel Awards 2009 Grand Final on Sunday, which was held at the Grosvenor House Hotel, a JW Marriott Hotel.
Today the contestants also visited their respective country stands, highlighting the truly diverse and global reach of the World Travel Awards, which this year received votes from 183,000 travel professionals in 166 countries.
Almost 1,000 of the travel industry’s thought-leaders and decision makers attended the star-studded Grand Final ceremony on Sunday.
The awards, described by the Wall Street Journal as the ‘Oscars’ of the global travel and tourism industry, revealed who are the ‘best of the best’ in the world.
The Grand Final ceremony concluded the 2009 regional tour which has taken the World Travel Awards to Dubai, South Africa, Mexico and Portugal, celebrating the achievements of the leading lights of the travel and tourism industry.
(Left: Lindiwe Mahlangu, CEO, Johannesburg Tourism Company, and host city of Miss World 2009 with Miss World contestants from FIFA 2010 country qualifiers)
World winners included: Etihad Airways, “World’s Leading Airline”; InterContinental Hotels & Resorts, “World’s Leading Hotel Brand”; London, England, “World’s Leading Destination”; Dnata, “World’s Leading Travel Management Company” and Regency Travel and Tours, Qatar, “World’s Leading Travel Agency”.
The contribution made on the evening compliments the “Beauty with a Purpose” programme, which this year has raised £1 million to support surgical, nutritional and educational projects in Haiti, Palau, Philippines, Ghana and India.
Started in 1951, Miss World is the longest-running beauty pageant in the world, and has raised over £150 million for good causes since its inception. It is now broadcast in 180 countries and seen by audiences of over one billion viewers, making it the world’s most watched annual TV show.
The Miss World 2009 final will take place on 12 December at the Gallagher Convention Centre, Johannesburg, South Africa when 120 contestants will compete in the world’s most coveted beauty pageant.