Meet Fabiana Granados, Costa Rica's star at Miss Universe

Fabiana Granados, a 23-year-old Tica from the northwestern province of Guanacaste, represented the country as Miss Costa Rica at the Miss Universe pageant. The Tica attained a spot in the Top 16 on Saturday. It was an impressive showing from a country that’s never won Miss Universe before and has had little past success.

Here’s what you need to know about Miss Costa Rica 2013: 

What is there to know about this year’s Miss Universe pageant?

The event took place at Crocus City Hall in Russia on Saturday morning (Costa Rica time). Aerosmith lead singer Steven Tyler and figure skater Tara Lapinsky were among the judges, and Mel B, aka “Scary Spice” from the Spice Girls, was one of the hosts. Pageant experts (there are a lot, surprisingly!) considered Granados one of the favorites among the 86 participants.  

Granados flew all the way from Costa Rica to Russia for a beauty pageant. That’s some trip. Did she get to do anything else while there?

She and the rest of the Miss Universe contestants went sightseeing of course! They took a tour of the Red Square and the Kremlin. Here is a photo of Granados posing outside St. Basil’s Cathedral, an illustrious church commissioned by Ivan the Terrible in 1552, in case you were wondering.
And yes, Granados’ scarf, hat and gloves match the facade of the cathedral. She came prepared.

MissCostaRicaStBasil

Courtesy of Miss Universe Organization

What’s this I heard about controversies with Miss Costa Rica? 

Miss Costa Rica faced two wholly stupid and rather minor controversies. When Granados was named Miss Costa Rica during the summer, her initial reaction was to yell “Oh My God!” Yes, in English. This offended some jingoistic types, who we suppose expected her to say “Dios mío,” or “¡Que tuanis, mae!” For the record, Granados speaks flawless Spanish. Don’t hate.

The other controversy was two-pronged, and centered around Granados’ outfit for the National Costume event of Miss Universe. Granados wore a feather-heavy pink costume that was designed to honor the espátula rosada (roseate spoonbill), a wading bird that inhabits her native Guanacaste. Several critics bashed the costume for being over-the-top and gaudy. In general, most of the outfits looked absurd (Miss USA dressed as a Transformer; Miss Curacao as a gecko).

But the other infinitesimal polemic honed on how the costume was recycled from a previous event. In 2011, the ensemble was worn during the annual Festival of the Lights Christmas parade. San José Municipality loaned Granados the hand-me-down costume for her trip to Moscow. Not a big deal at all. Here’s the outfit, by the way:

MissCostaRicaCostume

Courtesy of the Miss Universe Organization

Does she embody the image of the Costa Rican environmental activist?

Costa Rica has a history of supermodel/environmentalists. And Granados seems to follow that line of thinking. On her Miss Universe profile she says:

“I believe pollution is the biggest problem facing the world today. We need to come together to reduce our energy consumption to power our lives in the future.”

We approve!

How does Fabiana feel about exfoliating with coffee and honey?

She enjoys it.

How did Miss Costa Rica do in the pageant? 

Many of the Latina participants received hype coming into the pageant. Granados was probably one of the most praised. A former Miss Universe even considered her one of the five favorites. Overall, she did well, reaching the semifinals (Top 16 out of 86 participants). Counterpart Venezuela won Miss Universe (the country’s seventh win, second to the United States. The U.S. won last year). 

What’s the best way to get a date with Fabiana? Please help.

Wow, um, that’s a blunt question to ask. This is getting a little uncomfortable. All these questions about this woman whom we’ve never met.

Here, according to her bio, Granados likes to ride motorcycles, four wheelers, horses and mountain bikes. So maybe if you like those activities then you have a chance (ed. note: You do NOT actually have a chance with Miss Costa Rica). 

Do you have anymore photos of her?

*sigh* Here are the images you’ve been waiting for:

CostaRicaSwimsuit

CostaRicaGown

MissCostaRicaCold

RussianMissCostaRica

All photos courtesy of the Miss Universe Organization