Cynthia Olavarría

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Cynthia Olavarría
Born Cynthia Enid Olavarría Rivera
Santurce, San Juan, Puerto Rico
Occupation Actress
Height 5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)
Title Miss San Juan Universe 2003
Miss Salinas Universe 2005
Miss Puerto Rico Universe 2005
Beauty pageant titleholder
Hair color Black
Eye color Brown
Miss Puerto Rico Universe 2003
(1st runner-up)
Miss Puerto Rico Universe 2005
Miss Universe 2005
(1st runner-up)

Cynthia Enid Olavarría Rivera (born in San Juan) is a Puerto Rican actress, fashion model, TV host and beauty pageant titleholder who won Miss Puerto Rico Universe 2005 and placed 1st runner-up at Miss Universe 2005.


Early years[edit]

Born in the Santurce district of San Juan, Puerto Rico, Olavarría was an expressive and eloquent child. Those qualities made her embark in the world of beauty pageants, TV hosting and modeling since she was a teenager. At age 11, she won her first beauty pageant, "Miss Reina Infantil" and became the host of the famous Puerto Rican child game show Contra el Reloj con Pacheco.


Cynthia Olavarria attended Colegio La Piedad, a private school in Isla Verde, Puerto Rico, where she was an honor student and member of many school organizations, including the National Honor Society and the Student Council. After graduating high school, she enrolled in the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras Campus, where she managed to combine her studies with her modeling career. She graduated Magna Cum Laude in 2004 with a Bachelor's Degree in Mass Communications, with a concentration in Journalism and Public Relations.

Modeling career[edit]

At age 16, she started out as a model by competing in Elite Model Look Competition Puerto Rico, where she placed third. This served as springboard to develop a long modeling career where she has enjoyed success, achieving over 20 magazine covers and publications in Indonesia, Dominican Republic, Miami, New York, and Puerto Rico.

Many awards have been given to her for her trajectory, including two awards for “Best Female Model” and a recognition as a Puerto Rican “Top Model”. She also received the “International Model Ambassador Award” at the Chicago Latino Fashion Week in 2007, and another recognition as “Outstanding Model of the Year” in the Latin Pride National Awards.

Beauty pageants[edit]

Olavarria's history with pageants started at age 11 when she won her first beauty pageant, "Miss Reina Infantil". When she became 16, she competed in Elite Model Look Puerto Rico.

After graduating from college, Olavarría was headed towards a master's degree in International Relations as well as a career with Elite Model Management when she decided to temporarily change her path in order to participate in the Miss Puerto Rico Universe 2005 pageant, where she won the crown representing the municipality of Salinas in October 2004.

She represented Puerto Rico in the Miss Universe 2005 pageant held in Bangkok, Thailand in May 2005, and became the first Puerto Rican candidate in Miss Universe history to place first runner-up. The winner was Natalie Glebova of Canada. When Glebova was unable to attend the Miss Indonesia 2007 pageant on behalf of the Miss Universe Organization because of Canada's travel ban on Indonesia, Olavarría officially attended in her place.

During the course of her reign, she made many appearances on such television programs such as Don Francisco Presenta, El Gordo y La Flaca, Despierta America, Cotorreando, Primer Impacto, Objetivo Fama, Premios Juventud, and Premios Lo Nuestro.

Given her success in beauty pageants she has been invited to be a judge in several international beauty pageants, along with hosting some of them. Most recently she was a judge for the "Miss Universe Puerto Rico 2014" pageant.

Acting career[edit]

After finishing her undergraduate studies and returning from Miss Universe, Olavarria began taking acting lessons with actresses Elia Enid Cadilla, Flor Nunez and Sebastian Ligarde and completed the acting program of Hector Zavaleta in hopes of also becoming an actress. Her television debut was as the protagonist of a mini-series called “Cuando el Universo Conspira” in 2005. Later she made her theater debut by playing a major role as a princess in the child-oriented play “La Princesa de los Ojos Tristes”. In 2006, she appeared in Victor Manuelle and Sin Bandera’s musical video entitled “Maldita Suerte”. In 2007, she landed the protagonist role in the first-ever online telenovela for the Hispanic market, "Mi Adorada Malena", which was produced by Univision and broadcast on its website. Due to its success, it was later broadcast nationally on the network.

In July 2010 she landed the role of Lucy Saldana in Telemundo's telenovela-thriller Alguien Te Mira. She plays a crazy massage therapist that is obsessed with one of her coworkers and will stop at nothing to destroy his marriage so she can have him. In December 2010 she also played the main role in the music video of Jencarlos Canela's new single, titled "Mi Corazon Insiste".

In August 2013 Cynthia won a supporting actress award "Premios Tu Mundo" for her role as the good natured Diana Mercader in the telenovela-thriller "El Rostro De La Venganza".

As much as Cynthia enjoyed winning a "Tu Mundo" for interpreting angelic/good natured roles she also feared the award might typecast her indefinitely in such characters. However, early in November 2014 People en Español magazine announced that Telemundo Studios had cast Cynthia in a stellar villainess role in "Tierra De Reyes" a remake of the highly popular Colombian telenovela "Pasion De Gavilanes". This time she would be interpreting the diabolical, Isadora Valverde, a dangerous and obsessive woman who runs a drug cartel and who obsesses in a love triangle between actors Fabian Rios and Aaron Diaz.


Her hosting career started at an early age when she became the host of Contra el Reloj con Pacheco. After this, she made multiple appearances as a guest host for various television networks in Puerto Rico and many international events, mainly beauty pageants.

In the United States, she has been a presenter at Premios Juventud, Premios Lo Nuestro, Billboard Latin Music Awards, and the Mexican Billboard Awards. She has also served as guest host in Despierta América, Escandalo TV, and Al Rojo Vivo.

In 2007, Univision recruited her to become the official Runway Coach of the hit reality show Nuestra Belleza Latina which airs on the Univision network. There she held an active role in this position for three years total (2007–2010) while also doing work for other Univision sister networks. In February 2010 she moved on to work for Galavision as a news correspondent and co-host of Acceso Maximo.

Cynthia also worked for Univision's rival network Telemundo as the host of Decisiones Puerto Rico, the Puerto Rican adaptation of the Telemundo's series Decisiones. In 2008, she also hosted a Miss Universe special titled “Intimamente con Miss Universo” for Telemundo. The one-hour show follows the steps of Miss Universe 2008, Dayana Mendoza, after winning the title.

In 2007 and 2008, she joined Mexican singer and actor Fernando Allende to host the Miss World Puerto Rico pageant.

Recently she was also the temporary host of Telemundo's Al Rojo Vivo in November 2010 while she filmed the telenovela Alguien Te Mira. She also starred Mi Corazón Insiste… en Lola Volcán with Carmen Villalobos, Jencarlos Canela, Carlos Ferro, and Ana Layesksa where she plays Sofia Palacio. In 2012 she participated in Telemundo's El Rostro de la Venganza, with Elizabeth Gutiérrez, David Chocarro, Maritza Rodríguez and Saúl Lisazo; for which she won "Mejor Actriz de Reparto" (Best Supporting Actress) at Premios Tu Mundo.[1]

Early in 2014 it was announced that Cynthia will be starring in Top Chef Estrallas, a Latin American version of the reality cooking television show Top Chef that will air on Telemundo with stars competing for their choice of charity.[2]


Year Title Role Notes
2007 Mi adorada Malena Malena Ferreira Lead protagonist
2010 Alguien te mira Lucia "Lucy" Saldaña Antagonist
2011 Mi corazón insiste en Lola Volcán Sofia Palacios Co-protagonist
2012-2013 El rostro de la venganza Diana Mercader Co-protagonist
2014-2015 Tierra de reyes Isadora Valverde Main antagonist
Year Title Role Notes
2005 Miss Universe 2005 Herself / Miss Puerto Rico (1st runner-up) Contestant
2005 Don Francisco Presenta Herself Special guest
2007-09 Nuestra Belleza Latina Herself Guest judge
Year Title Role Notes
2011 Y vuelvo a ti Sofia Palacios Recurring role
2016 Loki 7 Candy Recurring role

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Nominated works Result
2013 Premios Tu Mundo Best Supporting Actress El Rostro de la Venganza Won[3]
2015 Premios Tu Mundo[4][5][3] The Best Bad Girl - Novela Tierra de reyes Won[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "El triunfo emociona a Cynthia OlavarrÃa -VÃ?DEO". Retrieved 2014-03-06.
  2. ^ "Telemundo Sets Spanish-Language Version of 'Top Chef'". Variety. 2013-07-15. Retrieved 2014-03-06.
  3. ^ a b c "Conoce a los ganadores de "Premios Tu Mundo 2015" de Telemundo". (in Spanish). Retrieved 21 August 2015.
  4. ^ "Kimberly Dos Ramos y Gonzalo García Vivanco máximos nominados a Premios Tu Mundo 2015" (in Spanish). 22 July 2015. Retrieved 28 July 2015.
  5. ^ Telemundo Network. "Lista completa de los nominados a Premios Tu Mundo 2015". Telemundo (in Spanish). Retrieved 23 July 2015.

External links[edit]

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
United StatesShandi Finnessey
Miss Universe 1st runner-up
Succeeded by
Japan Kurara Chibana
Preceded by
Cidra Alba Reyes
Miss Puerto Rico Universe
Succeeded by
Salinas Zuleyka Rivera
Preceded by
Miss Salinas Universe
Succeeded by
Zuleyka Rivera
Preceded by
Miss San Juan Universe
Succeeded by
Antoinette Castrillo