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Miss Universe 2008 Dayana Mendoza, of Venezuela, right, places the Miss Universe 2009 crown on Miss Venezuela Stefania Fernandez at the end of the Miss Universe beauty pageant in Nassau, Bahamas, Sunday, Aug. 23, 2009.
It's official. Miss Venezuela Stefania Fernandez is a galactic beauty.
The 18-year-old brunette was crowned "Miss Universe" on Sunday at the Atlantis Hotel in the Bahamas after besting rival finalists from Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Kosovo and Australia. Miss Dominican Republic Ada Aimee de la Cruz won runner up. (Miss USA made the top 15).
Fernandez was crowned by last year's winner, Dayana Mendoza, who is also from Venezuela. The Latin American country has won six titles overall.
The competition featured MTV "Hills" star Heidi Montag's first live musical performance, half of which NBC blocked out as the finalists were being introduced. Montag appeared in tight sequined pants and a matching bra and seemed a little "stilted" while singing "Body Language" off her debut album, The Associated Press reported. But fans still applauded the performance. Earlier, gossip site TMZ had reported that pageant production staffers worried the reality star would not be able to pull it off.