BODY ELECTRIC: Wearing a Kooey Australia swimsuit; Inset: with Miss Panama.
Currently on American soil, Chantal Zaky is exuding major confidence ahead of the Miss Universe coronation pageant slated for Wednesday, Dec. 19 at the Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino in Las Vegas. With rehearsals set to commence this weekend, Zaky is among 89 beauties from around the world vying to succeed Leila Lopes as queen of the globe.
“I think Miss Universe is a representation of the strength and femininity of women,” she concedes in a recent interview with pageant Web site Missosology. “The very essence of Miss Universe is poise and confidence with inner beauty of the heart. She should be goal-driven with a desire to help others. I believe I have those qualities and more.”
Her preparations to compete for the crown have been exhaustive, she says, and saw her making huge personal sacrifices. “The most difficult thing I did was give up carbs and completely change my diet,” reveals the 24-year-old. “I did this so that I can be at my best physically and mentally.”
The Miss Universe telecast will air live on NBC on Dec. 19, hosted by Andy Cohen and Giuliana Rancic.