Miss World talks all things London

They say that time flies when you’re having fun, and it must be true, as it’s just over two months now until we host the 69th Miss World Pageant in its birthplace of London.

As the excitement continues to build, we asked our reigning Miss World, Vanessa Ponce De León, exactly how she spends her days off in London.

Which we discover involves leisurely walks through Crystal Palace, gazing at fine art in the National Gallery and Vietnamese street food (Pork Pho in particular).

Having been to London several times now, have you developed an affinity toward a particular neighbourhood?

Yes! I love Crystal Palace, it is the place I go when I want to refresh my mind and soul, and it is a quiet space yet filled with energy. You can hear the wind through the old trees, the bark of a nearby dog, the steps of a running man or you can shut the noise out to stare at the clouds.

There is a  Greek statue at the entrance of the park, it is a man with no head; I feel that’s precisely the way to approach life, no head, only heart and openness to everything around you. Yes I know I am a deep thinker!

I know you also love to visit museums when you come to London, which one is your favourite?

There are two that I love to visit, firstly the British Museum; I love reliving decades from the past over and over again. The building is hypnotising, and it helps my creativity flow to look at it.

The National Gallery is also fantastic; I love sitting in the café with a piping hot chocolate while I read over my notes on art history.

After a long day of exploring where would you head to grab dinner?

I like to stop by ‘Urban Orient’ it’s a small Vietnamese restaurant in Crystal Palace that has freshly squeezed apple and carrot juice. My favourite dish is the Pork Pho broth that is made to soothe the soul.

Can you recall a particularly memorable day you have spent in London since being crowned Miss World?

After I won Miss World, my mum and I flew over to visit London. It was so much fun discovering the city together; it is the best gift we have ever received. We spent days getting lost in its history and beauty. I will always remember seeing the amazed look on my mums face when she looked at the Thames and Tower of London covered in snow.

If you need to refresh your wardrobe, where would you head?

I prefer to shop in small vintage shops, instead of the high street. I usually go to Brick Lane and Shoreditch for retro finds.

Finally how in your own words would you describe Londoners?

Londoners are open, non-judgemental, respectful, polite and diverse.

The 69th Miss World Contest will be held on December the 14th in London at The Excel.

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