Born May 29th, 1969, Mareva Georges Marciano is now known around the world as the wife of Guess Inc founder, Paul Marciano. However, this isn’t the first time Mareva has been in the spotlight and she actually has an impressive history of her own. In this biography, we’re going to learn more about Mareva, her family life, her history as a model, and much more!
Early Life of Mareva Georges Marciano
Mareva Georges was born in French Polynesia to a German father and a Tahitian/American mother. As well as her parents, Mareva looked up to her aunt, Edna Tepava, who was a model and won several awards; including Miss Tahiti in 1973 and Miss France one year later. Although information regarding her childhood is sparse, one would imagine Tepava played an important role and certainly influenced Mareva’s own career.
During her childhood, Mareva was raised in Puna’auia which is a small community in the suburbs of Papeete (French Polynesia). The community can be found on the small island of Tahiti and the whole region is an overseas territory of France (as the name suggests!). Tahiti itself covers just over 400 square miles, roughly the size of San Antonio, and has a population of under 190,000.
Rise to Fame
Although Mareva now likes to avoid the public eye, the early nineties were a time of success for the model and it all began at the age of 21. Like many young women in the beauty pageant industry, she was awarded the title of ‘Miss Tahiti’ in 1991 and this meant she would go on to compete in Miss France and even in one of the most famous events of all; Miss Universe.
After the success in Tahiti, Mareva followed this with even more success in Miss France in 1991 where she ran out as the winner. For any young model, this was a step of progress since the competition includes all cities in France as well as territories controlled by the French. From here, she would go on to represent France in the Miss Universe competition.
Hosted in the Aladdin Theatre for the Performing Arts in Las Vegas, there were a total of 73 entrants for the 1991 Miss Universe. For the first time, the United Kingdom joined the competition alongside Ghana, Romania, and Bulgaria. Although some countries had withdrawn, it was a worldwide spectacle and one that was watched across dozens of countries.
Of the 73 entrants, Mareva Georges placed within the Top 10; a large achievement for any individual. The eventual winner was Lupita Jones from Mexico while the runners-up included Yulia Lemigova from the Soviet Union and Paulien Huizinga from the Netherlands. With this in mind, Mareva not only followed in the footsteps of her aunt, who won Miss Tahiti and Miss France, but she went one step further and placed in Miss Universe.
Mareva has made some public appearances in the years since Miss Universe, and she did continue to do some modelling; rumors suggest this is where she met Paul Marciano. Her modelling saw her travel around the world and she was lucky enough to be invited to the 2004 Miss France pageant as a co-judge. Seven years later, her influence was clearly still important as she took the same role in the Miss National competition.
Interestingly, Mareva used her fame as a platform for TV hosting too. For example, she has worked on American Board Sports as a presenter.
In the years since Miss Universe, Mareva has been dedicated to helping those in need. In particular, her focus has been on women and children who have been subjected to abuse. However, Mareva has also assisted her husband, Paul Marciano, in various other philanthropic adventures including preserving important art, sending clothes to those who need them in Polynesia, sending food to Polynesia, and even supporting the Israel Defence Forces against terrorism. Therefore, it’s not hard to see why she managed the Top 10 at the Miss Universe competition in 1991; she has become a reflection of what the judges saw in her that year.
The Paul and Mareva Marciano Foundation
As mentioned previously, one of the main focuses for Mareva in recent years has been on helping women and children who have experienced abuse and this has been possible through the Paul and Mareva Marciano Foundation. On Facebook and around the internet, the Foundation is active in providing advice, guides, and information.
For example, one recent post showed a video advertising a new campaign to educate young boys on the topics of violence against women and inequality. In a powerful 45-second clip, we see the importance of caring for one another while also educating young boys on how to treat women. If young boys are seeing their fathers mistreat others, they’ll see this as the norm and get into the same bad habits.
Towards the end of October 2018, Mareva is also working on a coaching program that teaches victims how to rebuild their lives after abuse. Based in Te Ti’aturi nei, the Paul and Mareva Marciano Foundation now has a branch in Polynesia for these types of events and it allows Mareva to follow her heart and offer the sort of help required for women who are victims.
In this program in particular, one of many, the coaching is free to all who want to participate and there’s only one qualifying criteria; attendees must be willing to stick with it and attend all sessions. Throughout the sessions, the women have a confidential environment where they can be honest and receive help. In fact, the exact locations of the training are kept secret since some women who attend are still living with their abusive partners.
On the whole, the Paul and Mareva Foundation is aiming to make the world a safer place for all. Whether it’s discouraging nasty behavior or simply informing the younger generation of what is and isn’t acceptable, the Foundation wants to end sexual assault, child abuse, domestic abuse, non-consensual activities, and more. With Mareva at the forefront of the foundation and taking an active role, we start to see her passions and why she is admired not only in Polynesia and France but across the world.
In addition to her philanthropic work, Mareva has also played an important role in promoting Tahiti to the US and even a wider audience. In recent years, the country has attempted to boost their profile on a global scale and Mareva has been helping by promoting tourism in the region.
In 2016, Mareva Georges reached the headlines once more as she married her partner, Paul Marciano. With a lavish wedding in Bora Bora, the couple finally decided to tie the knot after being together for many years. In 2006, Mareva gave birth to their first child, Ryan, while 2012 saw the introduction of little Gia. Paul also has two children from his first marriage to Kymberly Marciano; Nicolai (1995) and Ella (1996).
Paul is well-known as the founder and creator of Guess Inc. In 1993, the clothing brand launched and quickly saw success. At their most successful time, they had nearly 500 stores across the US and revenue reached over $2 billion. In 2015, one year before Mareva and Paul’s marriage, he stepped down from his initial role as CEO but remains as Chief Creative Officer and Executive Chairman.
Like many of us, Mareva has an interesting history and it all could have been so different with her first partner, Mataho Salmon. Despite her nerves and lack of confidence, Salmon encouraged her to go for the Miss France pageant. At the time, the couple were talking of marriage but the competition rules state that entrants cannot be married while the pageant takes place. Unfortunately, their engagement came to an end after the pageantry anyway and they parted ways.
There we have it, everything you need to know about the former Miss Tahiti and Miss France, Mareva Georges Marciano. From beauty pageants to TV presenting to helping victims of abuse with the Paul and Mareva Marciano Foundation, Mareva has used her fame for good and this is great to see!