MANILA -- Philippines beaches will be welcoming top models, photographers, and other staff of American sports magazine Sports Illustrated next month.

Department of Tourism (DOT) Undersecretary for Media Affairs Kat de Castro said that this comes after Sports Illustrated has chosen to feature the Philippines in its next cover photo shoot.

“We would be doing the search for the next cover of Sports Illustrated. This is going to happen the third week of October,” De Castro said in a press conference at the DOT office in Makati City.

De Castro said there would be around 18 swimsuit models coming to the Philippines to shoot in lesser-known beaches in Sorsogon and Siargao.

She, however, said that the US-based magazine has not yet decided a specific beach to feature on its next cover.

“It will depend on the outcome of pictures taken by the photographer,” De Castro said.

The DOT official, meanwhile, expressed hope that this photoshoot would help position the Philippines as a sports tourism destination.

Aside from the Sports Illustrated cover photo shoot, De Castro said that the DOT is currently in talks to host other international events late this year until next year.

De Castro said that the DOT is also in talks to host the World’s Strongest Man event and a special tour for the new Miss Universe winner which will take place after the coronation of the next Miss Universe in Las Vegas on November 2017.

“A week after she will be crowned, she will visit the Philippines together with the top 15 finalists,” De Castro said. (PNA)