Friday, December 18, 2009

Miss World Kaiane Aldorino given a rapturous welcome home to Gibraltar

Gibraltar gave a rapturous 'welcome home' to Kaiane Aldorino, Miss Gibraltar yesterday afternoon, following her spectacular crowning as our very own Miss World, at the glittering beauty pageant finale in Johannesburg South Africa, last Saturday!

In scenes reminiscent of the returns to Gibraltar of Sir Joshua Hassan and Sir Peter Isola, following their visits in the 60's to the United Nations, thousands turned out to welcome back this triumphal daughter of Gibraltar, now crowned as the most beautiful woman in the world... Gibraltar's own Miss World!

Today's Gibraltar Chronicle reports that Gibraltar came to a buzzing standstill yesterday afternoon, showered in red and white, and bathed in sunshine, to welcome Miss World 2009 Kaiane Aldorino back home.

There were unprecedented scenes of jubilation of enormous magnitude, with an entire population wanting to join in this once in a lifetime celebration, wanting to be a part of history – not just local but world history.

On Main Street the crowds were three and four lines deep, with flags unfurled, and confetti hurled high into the air. In John Mackintosh Square the scene was simply unbelievable – standing shoulder to shoulder Gibraltarians jam-packed in the square rocked in cheer. The Spanish press itself cited some 15,000 people.

There was an uproar of elation as the most beautiful girl in the world stepped on to the balcony at the City Hall.

The sentiment was warm, heartfelt and sheer delight. ‘I love Gibraltar,” cried an emotional Miss World. The rapturous cheers were deafening. The pouring of emotion, - of hopes, aspirations and dreams come true was overwhelming.

As humble as ever, she added, “If I was a proud Gibraltarian before, I am even prouder now, and proud to be here with everyone – thank you all for all your support.”

GBC Television 'Live' video

Gibraltar's local televiion channel, GBC TV, covered Kaiane's arrival live and has made the footage available via 'Livestream':

Watch live streaming video from gbctelevision at

"Proud to be your ambassador"

As the champagne flowed and Kaiane made a toast, her family joined her on the balcony and she proudly introduced them… and again she addressed the crowds:

"This is a dream come true and I would not be feeling half of what I am feeling inside, if it was not for you. It is a day for all of us. I am proud to be your ambassador!"

As everyone sang, rocked and cheered to ‘We are the Champions’ – the feeling was one of euphoria.

Steve Douglas, Miss World Event Director, in disbelief at the scenes he was witnessing declared:

"I have taken many Miss Worlds home but we have never had a welcome like Gibraltar – never did we expect this – what a beautiful, beautiful country!"

He announced that during her reign she would be travelling to more than 50 countries, and that she would tell the world about Gibraltar.

Still taken in by the moment, he said:

"It was our job to bring your daughter home, the daughter of Gibraltar, to celebrate with the whole country!"

As Culture Minister Edwin Reyes joined her on the balcony he proclaimed:

"Kaiane, you will always be in our hearts!"

As the crowds clapped to the beat of Queen’s ‘We Will Rock You’, Miss World joined in raising her arms with the whole population in triumph – this was definitely her day! And Gibraltar’s!

Miss World Welcomed by Chief Minister

On arrival at Gibraltar Airport, flown in by a private jet chartered by the Gibraltar Government, it was Chief Minister Peter Caruana who first greeted her with a warm Gibraltarian embrace, the embrace that all of Gibraltar wanted to give Kaiane. As he welcomed her he handed her a bouquet of red and white roses. Also there to greet her was Mrs Caruana, and Culture Minister Edwin Reyes and Mrs Reyes.

Kaiane's joy was evident and it was clear it was her family who she was keen to see. Her mother, her father and especially her sister Noelle, who had not seen her since before she left for the Miss World contest, burst into tears on seeing her.

A few hundred people had also gathered at the specially prepared area of the tarmac, to be there and witness this special moment. Standing behind a barrier, along with hordes of press photographers, the first cheer came as they saw the jet for the first time. The cries went up a notch as she stepped onto the red carpet from the Gibjet which had brought her back home. Security was very tight and all awaiting her had to go through security as if they were boarding a flight.

The jet circled the runway to the sounds of the Fire Defence Service fire engine sirens following it, adorned with Gibraltar flags. Co-piloted by Gibraltarian Mark Carreras the plane came to a standstill in front of the iconic image of The Rock of Gibraltar, as Miss World appeared, dressed in a black suit wearing the Miss World Crown, she was greeted to the sounds of a fanfare by the buglers and a piper of the Royal Gibraltar Regiment. It was Gerry Fortuna on the bagpipes who serenaded her to the sounds of ‘Los llanitos son asi’.

Speaking at the Gibraltar Airport on her arrival, Chief Minister Peter Caruana, boldly and proudly stated:

"Gibraltar has two Queens, Her Majesty The Queen, and Kaiane Aldorino!"

The Chief Minister excitedly added:

"This breaks all records, and we are all very proud of this global achievement. She will prove to be a wonderful ambassador for Gibraltar and for the Miss World Organisation!"

Speaking to The Chronicle reporter, Kaiane said:

"I am just feeling great. I can’t wait to see what has been planned!"

Her Miss World title, she confessed, "was just beginning to sink in".

Unprecedented Scenes

Following a brief moment with her family and a change of dress, now in a smart red suit and her Miss World Crown, Kaiane was driven past Winston Churchill Avenue adorned with Gibraltar flags and Gibraltar Chronicle posters, and a large banner on the bridge which read ‘welcome home Kaiane – Miss World 2009’, people lining the streets in pockets along the way.

The scene awaiting Kaiane in Main Street were "beyond anyone’s wildest imagination" reports the Chronicle.

Miss World was transferred to the same car that paraded the late Princess Diana and Prince Charles through Gibraltar’s streets during their controversial honeymoon visit to Gibraltar. The Triumph was driven by Odette Benatar, escorted by three RGP motorists, and led up Main Street by the band of the Royal Gibraltar Regiment.

As she entered through the Casemates Gates, the crowds erupted – as she entered Main Street through a specially created arch of red and white balloons – the tears of joy and cheers and cries of ‘Kaiane’, ‘Welcome Home’, could barely be heard above the general uproar.

From balconies, from windows, and all along the street Gibraltar flags were being waved frantically – there were people of all ages. This was the smiling face of Gibraltar, - the day we all wanted to treasure.

On the balcony of City Hall, Christian Santos, who organised the 'welcome', announced her arrival; "The reigning Miss World 2009, Our very own Kaiane Aldorino" and the gathered crowd of thousands went wild with cheers and applause.

Francis Chipolina sang the emotional Gibraltarian song ‘Llevame Donde Naci’ (Take me where I was born) and tenor Nathan Payas also performed the Gibraltar National Anthem ‘Gibraltar, Gibraltar’, and the crowd joined in and sang along.

The cheers and cries of the people as Gibraltar’s beauty queen stepped on to the balcony to greet her people was deafening. In a cloud of confetti and streamers, and flags waving, she waved to everyone with a radiant smile. Again and again she moved across the balcony making sure everyone saw her – as they shouted “guapa!”, “well done Kaiane”, “Kaiane, Kaiane, we love you!”

'A Model of Consistency'

Chief Minister Peter Caruana yesterday declared that Kaiane in a very short period of time had transformed the sentiment and emotion of her entire fellow citizens.

"It is difficult to imagine that any single Gibraltarian can ever have a greater effect on the sentiment of the entire country, as Kaiane has had on the people of Gibraltar in the last few days, and today in particular."

Mr Caruana made these comments at the opening of the Press Conference at the Rock Hotel.

"We are unspeakably proud and happy that our own Miss Gibraltar has been able to triumph stunningly in South Africa and is now the reigning Miss World," he stated, describing her as "the most beautiful flower in the world".

"We entrust her to the Miss World Organisers," he added assuring that the Government of Gibraltar would give her and her family any support necessary throughout her reign.

"The Miss World Organisation has now seen how special she is to us all, they have seen what Gibraltar feels towards her, so they know that they are going to have to look after something very precious to lots and lots of people."

Mr Caruana said he had no doubt that she would be an equally successful ambassador for Miss World and for Gibraltar.

Steve Douglas on behalf of the Miss World spoke of the emotional roller coaster the experience had so far been for Kaiane.

He emphasised she had been a model of consistency in everything she had done.

"She has a wonderful way of expressing herself, and making everyone around her feel that they are special. That impressed the judges, and we feel she is going to be a fantastic Miss World!"

Addressing the press (live on Radio Gibraltar), Miss World was obviously content to be back home.

"To see my family, to see all my loved ones, my friends, my community, I am just really happy to be back!"

She admitted she had never expected the support or how Gibraltar had welcomed her with open arms. "I will treasure it forever," she said.

Asked if she now believed that she was really Miss World, she said:

"I should start believing it now because the whole of Gibraltar believes it. Seeing how proud Gibraltar is has given me the motivation and encouragement to do more, and I am truly looking forward to the year ahead."

Her travels begin in January when she heads for Asia beginning with Japan, Korea and Vietnam.

She stated that when she travels the world she will take everything about Gibraltar, "what can I leave behind?" she asked.

Mr Douglas emphasised that this was important year for the Miss World Organisation as it headed towards its 60th anniversary, and continued its charity work and brought to realisation the Miss World motto "beauty with a purpose".


I am indebted to David Parody who very kindly provided these great images of Kaiane Aldorino, Miss Gibraltar and Miss World 2009.

Photo © DM Parody (

More of David's great images of Miss Gibraltar (now Miss World) can be seen on his Flickr channel and on the Facebook Group - Kaiane Aldorino, Miss Gibraltar & Miss World 2009

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Gibraltar prepares a lavish 'welcome home' for our very own Miss World.... Kaiane Aldorino

The Gibraltar Government have now announced plans for welcoming home OUR Miss World, Gibraltar’s very own Kaiane Aldorino!

Plans for her arrival and 'Welcome Home' tomorrow afternoon, Thursday 17th Dec, are now complete, as was confirmed by a Government announcement earlier.

Miss World... Kaiane Aldorino, will arrive at Gibraltar Airport at 4 pm on a private jet chartered by the Gibraltar Government.

In a press release yesterday, the Government announced that Ms Aldorino will be met by the Chief Minister, Peter Caruana and members of her immediate family.

Members of the public are invited to greet her from a special enclosure being prepared on the airfield next to where the aircraft will park. People wishing to attend at the airport must arrive at the terminal by 3.30 pm at the very latest, as they need to be bussed out to the airfield.

At 4.45 pm Kaiane will parade through Main Street, from Casemates Square to Cathedral Square in (weather permitting) an open-top car. Should the weather be inclement, a different car will be used.

At 5.30 pm Kaiane is scheduled to appear on the balcony of City Hall to receive the acclamation of her very proud fellow citizens.

Francis Chipolina will sing “Llevame donde naci” and Nathan Payas will sing the “Gibraltar Anthem” from the City Hall Balcony.

In the evening, Mr Caruana will host a reception in Kaiane’s honour attended principally by her extended family and circle of friends, Miss Gibraltar contest organisers and helpers, and previous Miss Gibraltar winners.

There will be a fireworks display from Detached Mole at 8 pm to "mark Kaiane’s stunning achievement for herself and for Gibraltar", said the Government press release.

The Government has also arranged for thousands of Gibraltar flags and
confetti to be made available for use during the parade. These will be distributed, free of charge to the public, as from 2 pm on Thursday at the following places: Grand Parade, Waterport Road (opposite Water Gardens) and Casemates Square.

The Government said they will release all Government non-essential employees on Thursday at 3.30pm to enable them to attend the Miss World home-coming. It requested all businesses in Gibraltar "who are reasonably able to do so", to close on Thursday between 4 pm and 6 pm to allow their staff to take part in this very happy and proud occasion for Gibraltar.

The Chamber of Commerce has already urged businesses to release as many employees as possible but backs shops remaining open in the critical leadup to Christmas.

If the street celebrations that greeted Kaiane's winning of the Miss World contest are anything to go by... it's going to be a ball!!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Jesus is watching you!

Here's a good joke... just received in my Inbox this afternoon, to break the monotony of your Monday... in case you need it! biggrin

A burglar broke into a house one night. He shone his flashlight around... looking for valuables, when a voice in the dark said; "Jesus knows you're here!!"

The burglar nearly jumped out of his skin... clicked his flashlight off... and froze!

When he heard nothing more... after a bit... he shook his head and continued.

Just as he pulled the stereo out so he could disconnect the wires... clear as a bell he heard the voice again: "Jesus is watching you!"

Freaked out... he shined his light around frantically... looking for the source of the voice.

Finally, in the corner of the room his flashlight beam came to rest on a parrot!! eek

"Did you just say that? he hissed at the parrot.

"Yep", the parrot confessed, then he squawked;

"I'm just trying to warn you... that HE IS is watching you!"

The burglar relaxed and replied:

"Warn me, huh? Who in the world are you?"

"I'm Moses", replied the bird!

"Moses?", the burglar laughed.

"What kind of people would name a bird Moses?"

The parrot replied.. nodding towards the corner of the room;

"The kind of people that would name a Rottweiler Jesus!!" eek

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Miss Gibraltar Kaiane Aldorino crowned Miss World 2009

In a remarkable and historic turn of events for Gibraltar, Kaiane Aldorino, who was elected Miss Gibraltar 2009 back in June this year, was last night crowned as the new Miss World in a glittering two-hour global beauty pageant celebrated in Johannesburg, South Africa yesterday.

Dressed in a white-lace evening gown, our very own and statuesque Kaiane, who is 23 years old and works as an HR administrative clerk, had earlier won the swimsuit award and was an early crowd favourite.

At the moment that Kaiane was offered this most-sought-after crown by Kseniasukhi Nova, the Miss World 2008, of Russia and during the celebration that ensued, Kaiane was showered by silver confetti onstage. When her name was announced as the winner, she clapped her hands to her mouth saying; "I have no words!" (Watch YouTube Video below)

Later, when asked to describe her feelings, she said; "I am really happy!"

The crowd was rooting for her since the moment she won the swimsuit competition. She beat seven other contestants in the final round of the show to lift the crown.

Completing her 'court' are Miss Mexico, Perla Beltran Acosta, as First Runner-up and Miss South Africa, Tatum Keshwar, representing the host country, who was also very popular and was elected as Second Runner-up.

Like other prestigious title winners in the past, Kaiane did not talk about her immediate future plans. When interviewed later, Kaiane, wearing her crown of tiny jeweled blue flowers, said she had been impressed with South Africa, which was hosting its seventh Miss World final. Kaiane said:

"I will try to do the best that I can now that I have opportunity and advantage!"

Tearfully, she added:

"Thank you South Africa, this is the most wonderful moment of my life!"

Gibraltar bursts into spontaneous celebration

The show was seen by millions world wide and was televised live in Gibraltar. As result was announced, the news literally rocked Gibraltar!

In their traditional manner on major news moments such as this undoubtedly was, Gibraltarians took to the streets in celebration, following Kaiane's remarkable achievement... which puts Gibraltar firmly in the world's focus in a very positive way.

In typical Llanito (Gibraltarian) tradition, many congregated around the Waterport roundabout, noisily celebrating the wonderful news, car horns blaring and Gibraltar flags waving everywhere.

The local Gibraltar Chronicle blasted out the 'breaking news' headline and historically announced the news saying "It’s a Red Letter Day for Gibraltar today!"

The Chronicle said Kaiane Aldorino, Miss Gibraltar, "has shot to the top and won the Miss World contest".

It reports that mobile telephones were blocked as people rushed to spread the news.

Chief Minister Peter Caruana excitedly said:

!It’s a wonderful achievement for her and for Gibraltar. She's a special lady who deserves her huge success. A Gibraltarian again puts Gibraltar on the map!

We'll give her a home coming fit for a queen! Congratulations to her and her family!"

Speaking from South Africa, the now Miss World, Kaiane Aldorino repeated her earlier statements to the press and told the Chronicle:

"I am extremely happy but I just have no words to explain how I feel! I am just so, so happy!"

Chief Minister Caruana spoke to Kaiane who told him she was desparate to get home and celebrate with all Gibraltar. He told her that no one had ever made Gibraltar prouder and congratulated on behalf of all the people.

Kaiane also spoke to the Minister for Culture Edwin Reyes, who had informed her of the Rock’s reaction to the news. She asked him to thank everyone in Gibraltar for their support. She said she felt very proud and that it made her feel even happier knowing that everyone in Gibraltar was feeling just as proud.

PDP Leader Keith Azopardi said:

"This a spectacular achievement made all the more important because it was on a truly global stage.

Kaiane has made us all proud and we wholeheartedly congratulate her. She will be a fantastic ambassador for Gibraltar during her tenure.

We had sent her a message of support before the finals and she has truly put Gibraltar on the map in the best way possible."

Miss England 'disappointed'

The ceremony was broadcast to an estimated one billion viewers around the world.

Among the disappointed contestants was Miss England, a 22 year old soldier in the Royal Anglian Regiment dubbed 'Combat Barbie' by the British media, who has served in Iraq, was granted leave from the military for the one-month tour of South Africa, where before the live broadcast the contestants competed in sports, a talent showcase and, of course, the swimsuit competition but she failed to make it through in the sports heat after spraining her ankle during training.

"I'm sad to say none of us UK girls made it through to the final round, but I never expected to even be here," she said adding:

"There are a few tears here backstage and some of the girls are not talking to anyone."

L/Cpl Hodge was drafted in to compete in the contest last month after the original Miss England winner Rachel Christie relinquished her title following her arrest over an alleged nightclub brawl.

But the soldier was magnanimous in defeat, praising Miss Aldorino. She said:

"I was so proud to represent England in Miss World in front of two billion viewers; I'm chuffed to bits for Miss Gibraltar, the winner.

She is a real natural beauty who wasn't expecting to win at all.

I've enjoyed every minute of it and looking forward to my six months' reign as Miss England when I get back, as I want to use my title to promote the British Army. Well done Gibraltar!"

Miss India, Pooja Chopra, a hot favourite with the flag-waving international crowd, was eliminated in the top 16 after winning the 'Beauty with a Purpose' title for her charity work.

India and Venezuela have produced the most Miss Worlds, with five titleholders each.

Facebook Groups

Much like the streets of Gibraltar, within minutes of the news, Gibraltarians on Facebook went mad with many comments of ecstatic congratulations, expressing joy and pride in Kaiane's fantastic and historic beauty pageant world win. Within hours quite a number of Facebook Groups had also been created.

Not unexpectedly in the circumstances, there's a 'fan' page for Kaiane Aldorino Miss World 2009

As a means of channeling Facebook's highly excited Gibraltarian hordes and the public's huge enthusiasm surrounding this remarkable event, there is already a call for A welcoming street party for our Miss World... not that Gibraltarians need much excuse for a good street party... but this is one of the best reasons I've heard in a long time... to have one!

Some other groups include a call for A Statue for Miss World - our Miss Gibraltar... and perhaps not unsurprisingly, but to my mind... a little over the top now (not a sentiment normally accorded to Gibraltarians... much! biggrin ha ha) some are asking for the Government to Create a national holiday for Kaiane Aldorino - MISS WORLD 2009!! eek Hmmm... does that mean just for her... (in which case I am wholy in favour) or is this intended for the whole of the working population and school children?? Gibraltarians are never slow in calling for a holiday... or indeed taking them! lol In this case... probably justified... especially as if they do organise the street party... the end result will probably turn out to be... by default... a 'national holiday' anyway! biggrin

Proud to be Gibraltarian

As always... but today especially, like ALL of Gibraltar, I am very proud to be a Gibraltarian!

My personal congratulations to a lovely lady... well done Kaiane! You have already done Gibraltar proud and I am very confident you shall continue to do so during your tenure as the most beautiful girl in the world!!

Que guapas son las Llanitas.... Ole, ole y ole!! biggrin

Video of Miss World 2009 Winner - Miss Gibraltar - Kaiane Aldorino


I am indebted to David Parody who very kindly provided the Gibraltar street celebration images.

Photo © DM Parody (

More of David's great images of Miss Gibraltar (now Miss World) can be seen on his Flickr channel

Monday, December 07, 2009

Four Guardia Civil arrested in Gibraltar harbour following chase incident

According to media reports tonight, four Spanish 'Guardia Civil' officers were detained in Gibraltar earlier today, following an incident.

Gibraltar's Panorama is reporting that a Guardia Civil launch was chasing a Spanish fast boat in waters near Gibraltar. The pursuit continued into Gibraltar harbour and ended with both the fast boat and the Guardia Civil launch being grounded in Gibraltar port area by 'Harbour Views', late this evening.

Once on land, the two men on the fast launch raced for cover. The Guardia Civil rushed after them. Shots were heard, it is claimed.

The Guardia Civil officers were taken to Police HQ. Gibraltar police also arrested the two men on the fast launch and took them away. The two vessels have been seized.

The Gibraltar police said this was a 'very serious' incident.

Eyewitnesses claim that several shots were heard, but it was not clear how many and this report has not been confirmed.

Later this evening, the Guardia Civil officers were released after questioning and Spain's Interior Minister Alfredo Perez Rubalcaba telephoned Gibraltar's Chief Minister Peter Caruana and apologised for the incursion.

"Sr Rubalcaba called me personally tonight. He said that they deeply regretted the incident and apologised," Caruana said.

Last month, London's ambassador in Spain was obliged to make a public apology on November 20 after a Royal Navy unit based in Gibraltar was seen shooting at a buoy allegedly 'painted in the colours of the Spanish flag' during target practice.

The Spanish Government does not recognise the waters around the Rock, which are British Gibraltar Territorial Waters. But the Spanish have been arrested within the waters of the port itself, which the Spanish Government accept that these waters were ceded under the terms of the 1713 Treaty of Utrecht, Britain's legal title to the Rock.