Venezuela, which has won two consecutive Miss Universe titles, has crowned a new beauty queen of the country in Caracas.
Though the number of competitors was cut from 30 to 20, the night was hardly cut-rate. Contestants showed off their dancing skills, bathing suits and elegance on a multi-level stage.
The popular annual pageant draws huge TV audiences to watch young women representing different Venezuelan provinces vie for the crown. At the end of the night, Marelisa Gibson from Miranda province was named the winner. She will represent the country at the 2010 Miss Universe event.