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58 THIS ISSUE ENTERTAINMENT
30 HEIDI MONTAG MOTHERHOOD 31 BRITTNEY PALMER’S ELECTRIC FLOW 40 DEBI MAZAR TALKS BREAKING RULES 74 LIVERPOOL: PITCH PERFECT 72 ROBIN GIVENS FINDS HER PURPOSE 94 NOT YOUR ORDINARY ARTIST
27 FASHION ACCESS WITH COVETED COLLECTIONS 38 AMBER REYES PROVES YOU CAN HAVE IT ALL 43 SLAYING CANCER WITH (IMAGINE) DRAGONS 75 DVM’S 2019 MAN OF THE YEAR 80 SUCCESS MEANS STAYING THE COURSE
49 FROM GETAWAY TO ‘GREATAWAY’ 50 THE SAHARA: RE-DESIGNING HISTORY 53 FAIRMONT SCOTTSDALE PRINCESS 58 EUROPEAN SUMMER 62 ESCAPE TO SAINT TROPEZ
35 SKINCARE INDULGENCE 44 A BOLD EXPRESSION OF LUXURY 60 THE WILD SIDE OF PHANTOM 83 WOMEN OF WONDER
91 ADA’S BY ACCLAIMED CHEF JAMES TREES 93 SANTOS GUISADOS TACOS
HEALTH & WELLNESS
29 OF SOUND MIND 32 DEEPAK CHOPRA: LOVE-IN-ACTION 37 FITNESS INSIDER: SWEET SWEAT 77 LIFE’S LITTLE MIRACLES 79 INSURING YOUR FUTURE
ISSUE Nº15 FALL / WINTER 2019
PUBLISHING & EDITORIAL PUBLISHER: TIM HANCOCK
CO-PUBLISHER: SHYON KEOPPEL EDITOR: JEN CHASE-CORWIN CONTRIBUTING EDITOR: STACEY GUALANDI CONTRIBUTING DESIGN EDITOR: DONNA JOHNSON INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL DIRECTOR: JAMILLETTE GAXIOLA FASHION MARKET DIRECTOR: ALISHA ALEXANDER MEDIA DIRECTOR: DANI REEVES
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NOTE FROM THE PUBLISHER
VIRTUES FOR A NEW DECADE
Regardless of technology’s growth; the rise of new platforms; and the instant visibility that the digital age gifts us with on the regular, the future will forever reward these three virtues in our evolving culture: originality, community and inclusion. To be ORIGINAL means that lavish or organic, you’re true to the traits of your personality or brand, forever paving the way toward your best path to success. To be in COMMUNITY means remembering this: Nothing thrives in this world without proper nurturing. People blossom in community and so do brands…especially when they position community at the center of their culture. Our Women of Wonder honorees are shining examples of community in action (see page 83.) And to be INCLUSIVE means finding ways to welcome the newcomers, support emerging businesses and evolve your own story so that it contributes to the success of others. It’s often as simple as reaching back and grabbing a hand to join you along for the journey of success you achieve at every level. As we’re about to welcome a new decade, I hope you enjoy this issue and believe as we do: True luxury is within reach… especially if you hold tight to those three tenets. I’m proud of what Deluxe Version Magazine brings you, which, hopefully, is a sense that with every page you feel closer to the very best that life has to offer.
Publisher Tim.Hancock@dlxvrsn.com Instagram: @TimothyHancock
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ALISHA ALEXANDER Takes Luxury Shopping To The Next Level With Coveted Collections – By Dani Reeves Alisha Alexander is new to Las Vegas but is no stranger to the fashion industry. Having worked closely with CFDA winners Zac Posen, Eugenia Kim, and Tim Coppens she gained firsthand knowledge on what it takes for high-end brands to design and manufacture collections. “I have always loved sitting with the designers and creating,” says Alexander. “It was amazing to see the process start with a mood board and fabric swatches and transform into head-to-toe looks strutting down the runway.” However, even with her coveted positions within coveted fashion houses, she recognized there was something in the industry that needed to change. “I didn’t see enough multicultural designers retailing in-store,” says Alexander. It was that observation that sparked her idea to launch Coveted Collections, a platform that allows brands led by multicultural creators to connect directly with consumers. In Summer 2019, Alexander hosted an experiential Pop-Up Sip & Shop at Fresh Wata Studios featuring a fashion show, photo booths, and a Frosè spin bike that allowed guests to make their own cocktail! Nearly 200 people shopped looks from the candlelit runway while sipping cocktails and enjoying a live DJ. The designers hailed from Los Angeles, Detroit, New Orleans and yes Las Vegas based brands were showcased as well! While Vegas is the base, Alexander’s goal is to have a Coveted Collections Pop-Up in fashion hubs such as NYC, LA, and ATL! For more information on their 2020 event calendar or if you’re a designer who wants to showcase your collection find more details at www.covetedcollectionsusa.com
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Of Sound Mind –By Stacey Gualandi
ZONING OUT (AND IN) WITH SUBCONSCIOUS POWER AUTHOR KIMBERLY FRIEDMUTTER
“Your primal gusto comes from…your gut, your intuition, your instincts,” she says. “Everything that you come into this planetary experience with is in the subconscious. Just think back to the last time you didn’t follow your gut and what that was like for you…when you said to yourself, ‘I knew it. I knew it. I knew it. I was right!’”
Of master hypnotist Kimberly Friedmutter, Martha Stewart says they share the same philosophy (“Often the teacher, always the student”); Oscar-winner Jennifer Hudson credits her with helping women to be better versions of themselves; and former heavyweight champ Mike Tyson urges anyone who wants to “inspire the champion within” to heed Friedmutter’s words of wisdom.
This redheaded Texan first got hip to hypnosis as the host of her long-running hit radio show in Los Angeles, earning her the nickname the “Mystic in Cowboy Boots.” Seeking out hypnosis as a therapeutic tool long before bringing people into balance became her life’s work, Friedmutter now divides her private practice between Los Angeles and Las Vegas, where she lives with her husband, renowned architect Brad Friedmutter.
(So it’s pretty safe to say, Friedmutter has all corners of Hollywood in a trance.)
“I found that, from a subconscious standpoint, the fastest direct route to happy was [staying] curious, interested, intrigued, and in wonderment about anything,” she says. “It doesn’t matter what it is…but it was really important to me to try new things. “
Photos by Brad Friedmutter
Kimberly Friedmutter, CHt, is a longtime certified hypnotherapist who has mastered the minds of everyone from A-list celebrities to corporate CEOs to elected officials…a mindbender-to-thestars, if you will. Her client list is private and closely guarded, but (spoiler alert!) Friedmutter did share that this year she hypnotized popular Vanderpump Rules reality star Lala Kent— who was struggling with loss and the pressure of fame—for a segment on Entertainment Tonight. “Sometimes, someone giving you permission to calm down and to relax and be in your beauty is all you need, and she responded so great to [hypnosis],” Friedmutter says of Kent. “If you really want to see someone bloom, watch [Lala], because she’s one of these people that will really do what she wants in life, and she’s worthy of it.” Getting what you want in life is exactly what motivates Friedmutter. If you’re not in your proverbial right mind, this former model and actress says she can help you “expect the exceptional” by zoning out, connecting to your subconscious
Friedmutter’s book lays out several “Hypnotic Hacks” and the “Six Principles of Subconscious Power” for those who want to manage stress, overcome addictions and achieve meaningful change. (In late summer, O: The Oprah Magazine profiled the book as a possible tool for weight loss!) Ultimately, the first-time author hopes it will be a simple gift of learning who you are, and who you can become. and choosing the life you truly desire. Her secrets are now revealed in her first book, Subconscious Power: Use Your Inner Mind to Create the Life You’ve Always Wanted, which quickly went to number one on both Amazon’s “Best Seller” and “New Release” lists in the Self Help Happiness category, and has already appeared on recommended reading lists for CEOs and lawyers…signaling that the subconscious was definitely top of mind in 2019.
“The book is your shovel,” says Friedmutter. “I’ll stand there with you, and you start digging…then all of a sudden, you’re holding these jewels [that] maybe you didn’t know existed right underneath the surface. It’s a beautiful thing to know the power that you hold in your very own mind that you can utilize right now in super practical ways.” After all, a mind is a terrible thing to waste.
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HEIDI MONTAG DISHES ON MOTHERHOOD,
REALITY TELEVISION, AND TWO WARDROBE MUST-HAVES SHE JUST CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT – By Paul Zahn
In October 2017, Heidi Montag and Spencer Pratt grew into quite
the trio when they welcomed baby Gunner into the world and into their family. Earlier this year, the infamous duo, known widely as “Speidi,” wrapped the first season of The Hills’ reboot to stellar ratings, and production has already begun on a season two of The Hills: New Beginnings. We caught up with Heidi earlier this year at the U.S. launch of Booby Tape, the world’s first and original breastlift tape, to talk about reality TV, her wardrobe must-haves and even some details on motherhood. It’s that last topic that is of especially high import. Following six seasons of The Hills and a few other stints on reality television, Montag decided to take time to start a family. She and Pratt moved out of L.A., and for a few years enjoyed a quieter life. But when they got the call about The Hills reboot, they couldn’t say “no.” “It feels good to be back,” says Montag. “It feels different because I am a mom, and that is my number one priority.” The big difference this go-round for Montag was skipping those late-night parties for diaper duty and Sesame Street. “I was less part of the group than everyone else was because it was hard to leave my son,” she says, though the dedicated wife and mother did gush that, “the most fun is filming with my husband, because that is how we started and that is a part of our love story.” The reality vixen does still partake in that celebrity jet-set lifestyle with vacation getaways each year. “We always go to Aspen!,” shares the Colorado native. “I love flowers and the mountains.” She and Pratt always stay at The Little Nell, Aspen’s only five-star, five-diamond hotel. The Champagne-loving Montag warned of the altitudes in Aspen and how they affect a hangover (“one drink is like two”)…but those vacations are needed. “I have sleep deprivation,” she admits. “Motherhood is a lot of work and I haven’t slept much in 2 years.”
As Montag was gearing up to kick off filming, the wife and mother hopefully caught up on her sleep. Because this season? The stakes are high (and so is the drama) for Montag, her cast mates and her family.
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Photo by Getty Images for Booby Tape
While motherhood may have changed Montag’s priorities, she still has a few girlie loves besides her family and Booby Tape. “Valentino shoes! I feel like, who doesn’t have a pair of Valentinos? I see them everywhere,” she laughs. Another essential? Great swimwear, at the ready all year round. “I love Audrina [Patridge’s] line, PREY Swimwear. It is one of my favorites, so I wear that a lot,” she says. Of Patridge, Montag has nothing but light to shine on her The Hills co-star, whose painful divorce to former husband Corey Bohan was widely publicized. “I love Audrina. She is going through a lot. It is very admirable that she was a part of the show with everything that she is dealing with and continues to deal with. I don’t know how she does it.”
ELECTRIC FLOW PRESENTED BY KB ALCHEMY
July 4, Las Vegas Vibrant artist and UFC senstation, Brittney Palmer, launched Electric Flow within a curated art gallery presented by KB Alchemy inside Park MGM Las Vegas.
Images by Emily Wilson and Jose Valdez
Pictured: Brittney Palmer, Kamela Brewer, Arianny Celeste, Taylor Gwiazdon, and Drea Williams.
Deluxe Version Magazine | 31
DEEPAK CHOPRA ON THE HEALING POWER OF
‘LOVE-IN-ACTION ’ –By Allison Kugel
Deepak Chopra has been a mentor of mine from the day of my first interview with him more than a decade ago. I will never forget the day in 2008 when I asked him to explain such existential concepts as the distinction between the brain, mind and soul; the concepts of space and time, and how meditation benefits our physical and mental health. His answers then were clear and precise and without hesitation; on my end it felt like waking up from a dream and setting about on a continuous path of discovery. He and I sat down once again, this time to unpack the pressing issues of isolation, anxiety and depression and the growing epidemic of suicidal ideation and suicide, which have taken a sharp incline over the past 18 years. Deepak Chopra is now part of a team spearheading the Never Alone movement, a grassroots movement that aims to create community-led organizations around the world to help people in emotional distress who need community support. Never Alone is being funded through a GoFundMe campaign that has already surpassed its original goal. In tandem, Deepak Chopra has released his latest book, Metahuman (Harmony Books/Random House), which delves into the true essence of our nature when we break free of societal constructs and embrace a higher level of consciousness and greater zest for living on this planet. Deluxe Version: The subject we are about to discuss is an uncomfortable one, but one that needs to be addressed because we are losing too many people. We looked at some World Health Organization statistics that report there has been a 60 percent increase in suicides over the past 45 years, with a 30 percent increase since 2001. Our first question for you is simply… why? Deepak Chopra: We are living in a culture that aggrandizes narcissism and the whole idea of a separate self. People are constantly engaged in social media, and in general media, as well. All of this leads to a performance anxiety, in a sense: Am I relevant if I’m not being noticed? On the one hand, social networks are supposed to increase our connectivity. In one sense they do, because we can communicate more effectively. But it also increases our isolation if we don’t get noticed. Young adults, in particular, are at a very delicate stage of their life where they’re beginning to wonder about their identity. As young children, we never wonder about identity. We are just happy, without wondering about self-esteem and all those things. As we enter adolescence, identity becomes an issue and we are still forging our identities. Today our identity is all about, “Am I important? Am I relevant?” It’s not even about knowing who we are at a fundamental level. Why do we lose that joy and that feeling of wholeness, of being enough just as we are, as we get older? You are very right in your observation. The poet Rabindranath Tagore is quoted as having said that “every child that’s born is proof that God has not given up on human beings (paraphrased).” Children are naturally joyful and loving and have empathy and compassion and playfulness as their innate traits. The rest is the hypnosis of social conditioning. Unfortunately, it gets recycled through every generation, and now, it’s getting worse because of our ability to communicate our self-importance. Self-esteem is natural, in our natural state. We are confusing [self-esteem] with self-image, which is the ego-bound identity. Self-image constantly needs validation or else it feels very fearful. We have extreme weather patterns, mass shootings, more chronic illness, more narcissism, and certainly more anxiety and depression. And we have more people who are medicated
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than ever before. What is all this pushing us towards? And what is the spiritual reason for it all? A lot of what you are seeing is the mental health of a collective mind, or a collective humanity, that has created a world with all the things you mentioned. We’ve seen extinction in every other life form, but now we’re ready for our own extinction. The last extinction was sixty-five million years ago as a result of a meteorite hitting the earth, when dinosaurs were wiped out. We learned as a result of that extinction. But now, if we have our next extinction, it will be as a result of human behavior. If this is not collective insanity...if we don’t acknowledge it then we are decreeing our own insanity. We need to understand our personal role in this collective insanity. Suicide and depression are symptoms of our collective conditioned mind. We treat “hate” to be normal. We treat the psychopathology of our everyday existence as normal. So numb have we become. And so immune have we become to the cruelty that happens every day in the world. What if you’re an empath, and internalize everything, and you’re in a constant state of feeling the pain of everybody and everything? We can resign ourselves and say the human experiment has failed; that the human species was an interesting idea on behalf of nature’s evolutionary impulse, but it didn’t work. We can resign ourselves and wait for our collective extinction where we just go to the bar and get a drink, which will numb us even more, and which people are doing with drugs and alcohol and other addictions. This is mostly linked to this massive epidemic of suicide and depression. Or, we can do something about it and hope for the best. What I have discovered through careful observation and as a physician, is that when people support each other in anything—and it doesn’t matter what it is—it is healing. When we support each other, the outcome of whatever that condition is that a person is struggling with, it does improve. This is what has led me to the opportunity to create, both online and real-time communities where people can support each other for a more peaceful, just, sustainable, healthier, and joyful existence. Ultimately, this is the purpose of life, to experience our innate joy. That comes automatically through empathy, which leads to compassion, which then leads to the desire to relieve another person’s suffering. For all the empaths out there, including myself, the answer is to not just feel the pain of the world, but to take loving action toward solutions where and when you can. Right, because compassion leads to love, and it leads to love-inaction. Love-in-action leads to healing. Love without action is irrelevant. And action without love is also meaningless. This is an opportunity for us to create a self-sustaining ecosystem where people support each other and help each other. Helping each other is the best way to help ourselves. You’re a part of creating the Never Alone movement to provide support communities around the world, which we hope will prevent suicide and help people feel connected to real support systems. How will the Never Alone platform work, and will it be accessible to people of all socioeconomic backgrounds and geographic locations? Right now, the Never Alone platform will be run by GoFundMe. We are helping create an advisory board for the GoFundMe campaign. Our goal is to create selfsustaining grassroots movements across the world, because even in very impoverished parts of the world, people now have access to wireless technology. In wisdom traditions, a healthy community has three things: people dedicated to serving the community; spiritual practice of reflective selfinquiry and getting together with other people in the community. Today we can do that online, but we can also do that by creating our own localized communities and centers. This is not a Deepak Chopra campaign, or anyone’s campaign. It should be a totally grassroots, self-sustaining campaign where we create an ecosystem for helping each other in [times of] distress. Deepak Chopra’s book, Metahuman: Unleashing Your Infinite Potential (Harmony Books/Random House), is available wherever books are sold. Learn more about the Never Alone movement at GoFundMe.com/NeverAlone. Follow Deepak Chopra @DeepakChopra and tune in to his podcasts Infinite Potential and Daily Breath for your regular dose of Deepak, wherever podcasts stream. Allison Kugel is a syndicated entertainment columnist, author of the memoir, Journaling Fame: A memoir of a life unhinged and on the record, and owner of communications firm, Full Scale Media. Follow her on Instagram @theallisonkugel and at AllisonKugel.com. Photo Credits: Todd MacMillan, Jeremiah Sullivan, Harmony Books/Random House
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Deluxe Version Magazine | 35
Sweet Sweat –By Avery Schlereth
INSIDER INTEL Former NFL tightend Julius Thomas had this to say: “I used to use Sweet Sweat to get in shape for my football seasons, as well as [for] injury prevention. I now use it to maximize my workouts and detox my body.”
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Deluxe Version Magazine | 37
FROM A LUSH ISLAND TO A LUSH LIFE,
Amber Reyes PROVES YOU CAN HAVE IT ALL –By Elena Castriota Amber Reyes has it all: brains, beauty and drive. As the owner of LA Laser, it might look like she’s always lived the luxury life but that’s far from the truth. Growing up in Hawaii, her family struggled to make ends meet despite working hard. According to Reyes, the island doesn’t offer much in the way of upward opportunities outside of tourism. “The island is so small and slow that if you’re not involved in tourism, you can’t really do anything unless you have your own business,” Reyes explains. “I’ve been hustling since I was 14.” Reyes launched her career at aesthetics school in 2005 and knew instantly that she wanted to focus on the medical side of the industry. Adept at networking, she made crucial connections with well-known doctors in the field. After completing school, she worked for a big-name laser hair removal company and quickly became miserable after witnessing clients being treated like they were potential dollars, not people. “It was like herding cattle and I was a laser slave,” Reyes describes. “I cared about my clients, and I would feel bad and stay after hours to fit everyone in.” For Reyes, her clients are everything—wherever she’s gone, her clients have followed her—so she started leveraging the connections she
LA Laser currently has locations in Las Vegas and Oahu, with a location in Maui coming soon. Find Reyes (@adr808) and her company (@lalaserlv) at www.lalaserhairremoval.com. Wardrobe courtesy of Saks Fifth Avenue Las Vegas Makeup by Kandice Delgado
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made early in her career and began working for a doctor who trained and mentored her on how to get started. She began saving money to purchase her own laser, which was no easy task: a single device can cost well over $100,000. She bought her first laser in 2014 and LA Laser opened in 2015. Owning her own company has allowed Reyes to treat her clients the way she’s always dreamed. And she’s so philanthropically focused, she gives free laser treatments to women who have polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) or other troubles with their skin, and can’t afford treatment. “My purpose in life is to help others,” Reyes says. “I’m so grateful for my life, my clients, my team, and everyone who’s been a part of helping me grow.” Reyes is married to Boyz II Men member Wanyá Morris and loves being with someone who is so supportive of her as a person and a business woman. While she balances the many perks of being with a celebrity with the downsides of fame, she exudes the confidence of someone who’s made it on her own.
Debi Mazar Talks Womanhood, Millennials and Breaking Rules– By Allison Kugel In the 1990s, Debi Mazar’s cat-eyed glamour was spotted everywhere,
alongside close friend Madonna. Arm-in-arm they strolled red carpets across two continents and partied with a glittery group of social provocateurs. As an actress, Mazar came on the scene and shone brightly in the 1990 iconic mob film, Goodfellas, as Ray Liotta’s coke-addled mistress. She then appeared alongside actress Annabella Sciorra in Spike Lee’s 1991 interracial romance drama, Jungle Fever and followed that with two more Spike Lee films, Malcolm X and Girl 6. In 1995, she spiced up the screen as one half of Sugar & Spice alongside Drew Barrymore in Batman Forever. More recent projects included the role of sharp-tongued publicist Shauna on HBO’s runaway hit series, Entourage, which aired from 2004-2011.Her characters have always been quick with sarcasm and bold advice—no effs given—and if film and television casts can be compared to ingredients, Mazar’s surely the hot sauce. These days, the mom of two teenage daughters splits her time between New York City and Italy. Landing on another hit series with TV Land’s Younger, now in its seventh season, Mazar takes the reigns once again as irreverent artsy urbanite, Maggie. The show centers around a Gen-X divorcee who poses as a millennial to jumpstart her career in book publishing, only to have worlds collide in parenthood, work and love. When speaking with Mazar, she gives it to me straight, no chaser. A dye-in-the-wool New Yorker with an Avant-Garde spirit, Mazar shares her views on friendship, parenthood, social media and the art of risk-taking.
times with the character of Liza (played by Sutton Foster), where I wish my character, Maggie, could have offered her that type of direct advice. But we have to tell a story and stretch it out for television. Younger is in its seventh season...which is amazing when you consider how much competition there is for people’s attention these days. Why do you think the show has resonated with your audience? Our show is about female relationships, for the most part. They’re strong women who are bonding together and lifting each other up. In a world that is so crazy, I think that is a big part of the show’s appeal. Our show is also filled with humor, it’s extremely positive and light. It really is entertainment. The marketing machine that TV Land and Viacom put together, in terms of promoting the show and how they continue to promote the show, has been aggressive and fun. I give them a lot of credit for throwing it out into the stratosphere, especially on a network that was all about reruns. When I first got offered the show and they said it was on TV Land, I said, “Wait, isn’t that the rerun channel?” There is a Gen-X versus Millennial component to the show that speaks to a lot of people. Do you long for what was, or are you more of an embrace-thetimes-we’re- in kind of person? I’m a mother of teenagers, so I’ve had to deal with Millennials and Gen-Z, and I find them so refreshing. I am a Gen X type of person in terms of where I live, and liking how things used to be, and yes, I do complain that I liked New York City better when it was less crowded. I liked the city when it was edgier and not so antiseptic and cleaned up. On the flip side, I’m also a modernist and someone that looks to the future. I can’t sit around talking about how things used to be, because you have to exist in how things are and make your next decisions based on that. I can easily decide that I’m moving to Italy tomorrow, because I married an Italian and we have a country home in Florence. And I can choose to really go a whole other route, pretend like I’m in the Renaissance, and live in the country and tune out a lot of stuff. But I’m kind of addicted to certain things at this point. I have Instagram and I sit and check my phone for things all the time. Darren Star recently claimed there is a statistic showing that women are often put in positions of power during extreme corporate shake ups, placing them on what he referred to as “the edge of a cliff,” and making them more vulnerable to failure in their respective positions. In Younger, Hilary Duff’s character, Kelsey, experiences this when she is put in charge of Millennial Publishing during a shake up in the company. Do you think the audience is ultimately looking to be entertained by her failure, or inspired by her success? I think the audience is watching to see what happens. We all live on the edge of not knowing whether we’re going to be a failure or a success, and failure and success is something that is measured by ego. It could be measured in many different ways. I don’t know if that is a proven statistic, but I happen to think that women are stronger than men in many ways. Women turn shit around all the time. There are a lot of success stories in Corporate America of how women have turned things around. So, I don’t really know where that statistic comes from and I don’t think it’s a male or female thing, necessarily. Half of it is luck and timing, anyway.
Deluxe Version: In your series, Younger, your character Maggie is the catalyst that gives the other characters permission to make bold decisions that they wouldn’t ordinarily make. In your own life, who has given you permission to draw outside the lines? Debi Mazar: I surround myself with many friends that do that for me; it’s not just one person. Certainly, it starts with my husband. I obviously run things by him. In my life, I’ve had people I looked up to who were older, or who had sage advice in their soul to offer. Sometimes it could even be my teenage daughters. Their thoughts are generally so pure. My older gay male friends always have sage advice, and my girlfriends, [the late fashion designer] Isabel Toledo being one of them, and Madonna being one of them…ultimately, you know deep in your soul what you should do, and I’ve always been a risk-taker. Are you as bold and irreverent as the characters you’ve played? I think I’m bolder than my current character on Younger, for real! Maggie is a little more Bohemian, and she’s [artsy]. I sometimes wish she could be even bolder. I know she’s a catalyst for the story. Often, in my life, I’m just like, “Oh please, just fucking do it already!” I think I’m a little bit more the type of person in my own life who will say, “Do what you need to do,” as opposed to merely suggesting. There have been
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Do you think someone can become extremely successful playing by the rules, or do you think that rules must be broken while chasing a dream? A rebel has to break rules. You have to take chances, and you have to fall on your face before you get back up and know that you made a mistake, and you can try to do it differently. I think you have to break the rules to a degree… in a smart way. Younger airs on TV Land on Wednesdays at 10/9c. Catch up on Seasons 1-6 on TV Land On Demand or on Hulu and PlayStation Vue. Follow Debi Mazar on Instagram @debimazar. Allison Kugel is a syndicated entertainment columnist, author of the memoir, Journaling Fame: A memoir of a life unhinged and on the record, and owner of communications firm, Full Scale Media. Follow her on Instagram @theallisonkugel and at AllisonKugel.com. Photos courtesy of TV Land. Transcription and Typesetting: Carolyn Strum.
STARS OF THE MOMENT
Pictured: Debi Mazar, Hillary Duff, and The Cast Of Younger
SLAYING CANCER WITH (IMAGINE) DRAGONS AT THE
‘RISE UP’ TRF GALA – By Stacey Gualand
“Everyone has a hero. I gave birth to mine.” When Cheryl Lingenfelter made that touching tribute to her 9-year-old daughter Savannah—who beat leukemia twice—she captured (for me) an emotional, magical moment at the Tyler Robinson Foundation’s 6th Annual “Rise Up” Gala inside Wynn Las Vegas. Formed by Las Vegas’ resident rockers Imagine Dragons in 2013, the non-profit broke previous records by raising a whopping $3.2 million during this National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. More than 85 percent of every dollar goes directly to desperate families who need both emotional and financial support after a childhood cancer diagnosis and in just 6 short years, it has helped over a thousand families.
Photos by Brian Steffy
“My worst nightmare would be if my children would have a diagnosis of cancer. Anybody who has a child knows that,” says lead singer Dan Reynolds.
A star-studded list of supporters hit the red carpet for this year’s event on Sept. 6, including the Vegas Golden Knights, actress Alexandra Daddario, singer Daniel Emmet, Euphoria star McKenna Roberts, and TRF Honorary Chair Shaquille O’Neal, who personally donated multiple $15,000 gifts. “I love children,” says the 7-foot-1 basketball legend. “I understand Tyler’s story. I don’t understand what parents go through, but I’ve heard the horror stories. A lot of them are not financially able to keep up. [This foundation is] all about helping people.” Over 850 guests were on hand to see philanthropic honorees Zappos, Corner Canyon High School and artists Tim and Amy Cantor, capped off by an acoustic set of the band’s greatest hits. Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman also made a surprise stop to proclaim Sept. 6, 2019 “Imagine Dragons Day in Las Vegas,” for “these generous souls and everything they do for humanity.”
The father of two says it all started with a Facebook message, and 16 year old Tyler Robinson’s brother posting that the Imagine Dragons song, It’s Time, had helped Tyler cope with his cancer treatments. The Grammy-winning Dragons soon met their number one fan and a friendship was born. Shortly after Tyler passed away from brain cancer 2 years later, the Dragons formed the foundation with the Robinson family.
You could feel the spirit of Tyler Robinson throughout the night, and it made me ask Reynolds what his young friend would say about all the people who rise up in his honor?
Reynolds says there is nothing more rewarding than working tirelessly for families in crisis, like the Lingenfelters. “I think when we’re able to ease something in their life and bring a smile to their face, that brings us more joy than being on stage in front of hundreds of thousands of people. It kind of shows you what matters in life.”
Rock on, Tyler.
Reynolds paused for a moment, then said of his hero, “I think he would say: ‘What’s next? Let’s go! We’ve got more work to do!’”
For more information, go to www.trf.org.
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ROLLS-ROYCE TELLS A TALE OF LUXURY
EXTRAORDINARY CREATIVE TEAM INTERPRETS MARQUE’S BOLDEST LINE IN A SHORT FILM ABOUT EVOCATIVE ART – By Jen Chase-Corwin In March 2016, Rolls-Royce released a bespoke line of super-luxury motor cars to appeal to a new demo of drivers: Black Badge, which Rolls-Royce Motor Cars’ CEO, Torstein Müller-Ötvös, says “began as an alter-ego of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars but has grown to define an attitude that exists among a new breed of entrepreneurs. “These remarkable people are confident, assertive and willfully disruptive,” says Müller-Ötvös of Royce’s growing fandom. “They respond to the notion of reimagined rules.” In that spirit, Rolls-Royce commissioned bionic performance artist and art director Viktoria Modesta to illuminate Black Badge’s presence with an orignal work. The famed marque then turned her process into a short film that interprets the essence of the Black Badge line. Celebrated for her innovative and futuristic approach to art (and, for famed performances at the Paralympic Games Closing Ceremony, Art Basel, and sundry worldwide Fashion Weeks), among items Modesta made for the Black Badge performance art piece was a prosthetic limb wrought from Black Badge carbon fiber...a collaboration between her and Joe Dip Rima at ArcAttack; the Alternative Limb Project; and the Rolls-Royce Bespoke Collective of craftspeople, designers and engineers. Of particular note: a Tesla coil was incorporated into the prosthetic’s heel which activates under pressure to create a “Jacob’s Ladder” effect, illuminating the glass area of the limb with a continuous train of sparks-on-demand. It is the first wearable Jacob’s Ladder of its kind, and is finished in Rolls-Royce’s hallmark black paint and detailed with a 3D-printed and electroplated Rolls-Royce grill motif. “There are many parallels between the Black Badge philosophy and my work: chiefly, maximizing your potential and becoming a hyper-version of yourself,” says Modesta. “I really wanted to capture the Black Badge attitude and fierce spirit by embodying that through body art....Pushing the boundaries to the extreme, we explored the allure of a darker, bolder expression. A place where your senses are heightened, where you are the bravest and most free.” Other artists who contributed to the film that documents Modesta’s creation include fashion designer Anouk Wipprecht, director Jora Frantzis and musicians Cardi B and IV Jay. Says Müller-Ötvös: “This film is a tribute to [Black Badge’s] philosophy and the ongoing success of this truly transformative expression of luxury.” View the short film online at rolls-roycemotorcars.com.
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FROM GETAWAY TO
THESE SUMPTUOUS SPOTS ARE WORTH BOOKING…RIGHT…NOW. – By Paul Zahn 48 | Deluxe Version Magazine
PRETTY IN Puerto Vallarta Boasting 80 deluxe guest rooms and ocean-front suites, Villa Premiere Boutique Hotel & Romantic Getaway is the perfect spa destination resort in Puerto Vallarta. The four diamond-rated, adultsonly sanctuary embraces the relaxed and refined vacation goer, just steps away from the hustle and bustle of downtown Puerto Vallarta. The property offers a wide variety of world-class services with a keen attention to detail. Guests are offered a five-minute, anti-stress welcome massage, a seven-scent aromatherapy menu, and a five-pillow option menu upon check-in. The renowned getaway spot also provides guests access to a 24-hour private butler service to provide everything from activity options to dinner reservations at the “best of the best: restaurants in Puerto Vallarta. The luxurious resort has two swimming pools; beach and poolside cabanas and lounge chairs; three on-site restaurants; and its Mind & Soul spa. (Not to overlook: Vacationers can melt away stress with complimentary full access to the sauna and steam room at the Mind & Soul spa.) While there is so much happening in the city center of Puerto Vallarta, guests at Villa Premiere really have no reason to leave the world-class property…which Trip Advisor named a winner of its 2019 Travelers’ Choice Awards.
Set in Southern Chile, Patagonia Camp provides the perfect setting for individuals seeking a secluded and action-packed trip. The outdoor playground is known worldwide for its gorgeous setting and distinctive offerings like kayaking, hiking, fishing, and stand-up paddling. Guests will enjoy an intimate nature experience all while partaking in a “glamping” concept in a remote destination. The private reserve, sprawling across 84,000 acres of stunning evergreen forests, offers accommodations in private yurts that allow guests to listen to the wind and the rain while also enjoying the amenities and comforts of a conventional hotel. The Camp’s extensive culinary offerings also allow guests to embrace the local Chilean cuisine with items that include king crab, salmon and lamb. With its outdoor activities and decidedly comfort-camp accommodations, Patagonia Camp provides a haven at the intersection of adventure and luxury.
THE SAHARA RE-DESIGNING HISTORY AT THE START OF THE STRIP —By Stacey Gualandi Neither wind, nor rain—nor early speculation—would interfere with this much-anticipated announcement: The seminal Sahara Hotel and Casino is back on the world-famous Las Vegas Strip, and will be better than ever. It was a “dream come true” for owner and lifelong entrepreneur Alex Meruelo, who purchased the hotel formerly-known-as-SLS in 2018. In June of this year, he heralded a new era for the iconic property to much fanfare, including a dynamic Intel® Shooting Star™ drone light show high above more than 700 guests gathered at the Foxtail pool, and a new tagline: “The Strip Starts Here.”
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“We can make a big impact here at this iconic location. Our property is just the right size to deliver the bold, yet personalized experiences that made visitors first fall in love with Las Vegas,” says the founder of the Meruelo Group. This blast-to-the-past renaming is part of a prodigious plan to bring Sahara into the future, but it’s just the beginning of Meruelo’s $100 million commitment to improvement, says Paul Hobson, the senior vice president and general manager of SLS Las Vegas. “What we want to do is take that name and interpret it for today’s Las Vegas. It’s not really so much looking back as looking forward.” To date, upgrades to the casino floor; hotel rooms and corridors; and additions to its awardwinning culinary program have been completed, with more scheduled to begin later this year, including updates to the hotel lobby and guest check-in. “It’s the rebirth of a legend,” says Nancy Paolino, the re-design expert entrusted to bring Meruelo’s vision to life. To better understand their SLS-to-Sahara sea-changes, one must first head North to Meruelo’s other crowning Nevada achievement: the Grand Sierra Resort and Casino in Reno.
LAS VEGAS & RENO
when I visited the nearly 2,000 room resort earlier this year. From the mosaic marble and bejeweled bar in the new “Crystals” lounge, to the warm and airy 13,000-square-foot boutique spa (the signature spa massage is definitely grand!), to the dramatically upgraded and re-lit casino ceiling, it felt like an open and inviting oasis near the biggest little city in the world. The grand dame Grand Theater—now partnered with Live Nation—even got a facelift, offering more luxury leg room, and exclusive VIP booths with bottle service. (All the better to enjoy the Pixies and Hozier during my getaway weekend!) “I think the property reflects Mr. Meruelo’s personality: very elegant, very sophisticated. And we really do travel the world to try to find the best of the best without really breaking the bank.” Nowhere is that more evident than at the 25,000 square foot Lex Nightclub, now the region’s goto nightlife venue, according to GSR. At a cost of $15 million, it boasts a glass dance floor above an indoor pool; three full bars; 40 VIP tables; nine intricate skylights; and a multi-million dollar lighting system. And, it plays host to dope DJs like Steve Aoki and Tiesto. “Good design is timeless,” says Paolino. “We really look for a design that will excite the senses but also be approachable for the guest and make them want to sit, stay and have [an] experience where they’re gonna create a memory.”
As a project design executive for Las Vegas-based Innovativo Design, Nancy Paolino first joined forces with Meruelo after he bought the Reno property in 2011, when GSR was a shadow of its current self. “It used to look like a brown dungeon: Very, very dark and drab,” says Paolino. Like Sahara, GSR has plenty of history to offer. It originally opened in 1978 as an MGM property, but changed hands many times throughout the years. The 2,700-seat Grand Theater is home to the world’s largest indoor stage, with more than a full acre of usable space. But what started out as a run-of-the-mill room renovation for Paolino turned into a $200 million, 8-year, ever-evolving massive makeover. “It bled out into public spaces, restaurants, casino, [and ] bars and lounges. At this point, 8 years in, we’ve pretty much touched everything at least once…with a few exceptions,” says the New York City transplant. That included a revamp of the resort’s Restaurant Row—a dining destination worth dishing about. With its “edgy rustic-luxe” vibe, it features the Grand Buffet on one end; Charlie Palmer Steak by its master-chef namesake on the other; and the brand new Reserve Wine Bar and Cantina in between (…which will tease your tastebuds with everything from Tempranillo to tequila). “We’ve used a lot of rich materials,” according to Paolino, like wool carpets and with custom patterns that are lively and bright.
Speaking of memories, I won’t soon forget the newly rejuvenated resort-styled pool with three hot tubs, seven fire pits (with optional s’mores!), private levels, and a highlight for me: a gigantic two-story wooden chair. Says Paolino, “When I first said it’s gonna be orange, everybody looked at me like I had ten heads.” But it is, in fact, very Instagrammable. Paolino says they’ll continue to push the design boundaries, bring fun and excitement to the property and never stop being clever. “I have enormous construction background and, of course, Mr. Meruelo and his whole group come from a construction-related industry as well. So I think that’s why we get along so well,” she says. “We really don’t design anything that we fear is not construct-able.” With the high-limit room open and ready to take bets, next up on the makeover manifest is the Charlie Palmer 80 Grand Wine Bar; a bowling alley overhaul and the installation of a showstopping, 36-and-a-half foot wide chandelier with 3-D, hand-cut leather-designed walls to hang in the hotel lobby. “We wanted to have that ‘aah!’ moment right when you walk in the front door,” says Paolino. “I designed [it] in my head a couple years ago. It’s very difficult to execute because it’s an 18,000 pound monster, but it’s going to be quite spectacular.” Now, GSR is the premier destination in Reno, and the powers-that-be are praying history will repeat itself at Sahara. For Meruelo and his team, the dream continues. “We are now responsible for shaping a new narrative,” says Meruelo. “We are writing the next chapter in the city’s evolution, for the love of Vegas.”
For me, everything screamed decadence…a far cry from the aforementioned dark dungeon
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SCOTTSDALE PRINCESS —By Ashlee Demartino
THE ULTIMATE DESERT OASIS At the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess, five-diamond designation means luxury at its finest, and the hotel’s highly detailed and guest-centric approach is seen in every experience it offers. “From the moment our guests arrive—meeting our canine ambassadors—to the small details and pampering touches of their pool experience such as sunglasses cleaning, passed chilled fruit and sun recovery, our team is focused on delivering our guests a luxurious and memorable experience,” says Teresa Thompson, director of retail and resort experience. The Princess offers vast open spaces, lush grounds and perfect sunset views, and more than 750 lavish guest rooms, two premium presidential suites, 66 gold suites, and 119 casitas. It stands out from other resorts in the Valley not just for its accommodations (although those help): The resort has a Forbes four-star rated “Well and Being Spa,” six sparkling pools and a championship 18-hole golf course that is home to the PGA Waste Management Open every year. When you’re hungry after all of your lounging or playing, one of the property’s five signature restaurants (Ironwood American Kitchen, La Hacienda, Toro Latin Restaurant and Rum Bar, Bourbon Steak and Plaza Bar) has you covered. Executive Chef Conor Favre oversees the dining program. “It is a unique dining destination not only for our guests, but for locals, as well, because we have so much to offer,” says Favre. “Memories are created through our food and beverage offerings, and the detailed service throughout the resort. Heart and soul is put into every meal created for our guests.” Serving everything from American to Mexican, sushi to steak, and plenty of kid-friendly comfort foods, every restaurant has its own unique flare. Just don’t ask Favre to name his favorite. “It’s hard for me to pick! There is so much!” says Favre. “You have to come and experience the magic.” That said, Favre says folks can’t go wrong with Oro’s guacs, tacos and “baller pork chop,” and Ironwood’s entire brunch time experience…especially the don’t-miss donut wall.
Tequila more your thing? La Hacienda has more than 200, as well. And whether you’re vegan, keto or gluten-free, the Princess caters to all. “We can pretty much modify any menu item to accommodate, and if not, we can create options for our guests,” says Favre. “We strive to give all guests, regardless of dietary restrictions or preferences, a memorable meal.” As for year-round fun, the Princess has exciting activities for the whole family: According to Teresa Thompson, signature events such as Christmas at the Princess, Springtime at the Princess and the Easter Brunch experience, as well as Summer at the Princess, which features enhanced programming around Memorial Day, July 4, and Labor Day weekends.” And don’t be surprised if you run into a celebrity or president while at the Fairmont Princess. “We have had the pleasure of hosting multiple sitting, as well as former U.S. presidents, and we have worked closely with their teams to ensure their safety, security, comfort, and privacy,” says Thompson, adding that the resort also routinely hosts celebrities, athletes, musicians, and pop culture icons. Despite its famous clientele, don’t let the Fairmont Princess’s luxe oasis-ness scare you away: At heart, she’s an equal-opportunity peacefulness provider just waiting for your reservation.
Additionally, each restaurant has its own signature liquor or cocktail. Like rum? Toro has 200 options.
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This photo is at Loulou à Ramatuelle. You’ll always find lots of ice in my Champagne- I love La Piscine de Champagne. It just means to pour your Champagne or rosé over ice to keep things cool, chic, hydrated, and not too buzzed.
BRING A BOOK OR TWO The trip was spent reading a lot. Reading is really important for me to make time for. I had just finished My First Five Husbands and The Ones That Got Away by Rue McLanahan and was on to Rob Lowe’s new book. I highly recommend both of them. This outfit was ideal because it felt like I was on my 4th husband. LOL. Also, this hat kept my face out of the sun the entire trip. Sure, maybe I lost it and had to overnight another one to my hotel, but that’s neither here nor there.
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THE SKINNY CONFIDENTIAL EUROPEAN SUMMER â€“ By Lauryn Evarts Bosstick
SKIN ON POINT I used this mask four times throughout the trip. It was a godsend, especially when feeling jet lagged. I highly recommend a mask that tightens the face and the pores when travelling.
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After Capri, we landed in St. Tropez for 8 days. We stayed at Château de la Messardière and ventured off to Loulou à Ramatuelle which is this deliciously major restaurant that has insane food and an insane atmosphere. They also have a beach club in front of the restaurant so you
QUALITY TIME We went to Antibes and stayed at The Hôtel du Cap-Eden-Roc. I could live there. You literally feel like a princess. This was probably the most romantic part of the vacation and it was really nice to spend time with my husband.
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DVMâ€™S TOP DESTINATIONS TO CONSIDER FOR TRAVEL IN 2020:
LUXURY SUITES & PENTHOUSE ESCAPES
HOTEL VILLA COSY
2019 Top Luxury Hotel In Saint. Tropez
LUXURY SUITES & PENTHOUSE ESCAPES
ESCAPE TO SAINT-TROPEZ The Villa Cosy, hotel and spa combines luxury and calm in the center of Saint-Tropez. The resort offers rooms, suites and villas, located around a swimming pool heated all year round and an exotic garden. In this idyllic and relaxing environment, our dedicated and attentive team offers you a personalized welcome where each of your desires will be enhanced. Our exclusive concierge service is available 24 hours a day. The hotel desireâ€™s to make your stay unforgettable is worth the loyalty of guests, year after year. To enhance your stay, the hotel offers different places, like the Spa by Sothys with its sensory and innovative experiences; and the Cosy bar and its warm atmosphere, from which you can discover the exceptional architecture of the hotelâ€™s cellar where aging Grands Crus, local wines and prestige Champagnes, to be tasted on demand by contacting room service. Outside, various terraces will allow you to enjoy the tranquility of the place at its best, from the Zen area with its sparkling hot tub to the beaches of the main pool. www.villacosy.com
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THE WILD SIDE OF PHANTOM British photographer Rankin made Phantom his subject. Counted among the great photographers and filmmakers of our time, Rankin’s strong sensorial style has led him to move beyond fashion and beauty into a world of atmospheric storytelling. This body of work shines a light on Phantom’s younger driver-focused appeal in a short film that speaks directly to a new generation of Phantom customers. This generation comprises hyper-successful, self-made, individuality seekers, and this generation is in the driver’s seat. Torsten Müller-Ötvös, chief executive officer, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, commented, “Phantom Limousine, the extended wheelbase and Phantom, the standard wheelbase, reflect two distinct groups of patron. The former is drawn to the formality of the ultimate chauffeur-driven limousine, while the latter are lured by Phantom’s exceptional driving experience. Rankin’s playful and witty short film captures the younger and daring charisma of Phantom and displays a refreshing irreverence toward the expected codes of automotive luxury.” The short film can be viewed online at rolls-roycemotorcars.com.
THE WILD SIDE OF
Rankin cast Gwendoline Christie, the English star of stage and screen and most recently seen as Lady Brienne of Tarth in Game of Thrones and Titania in London’s Bridge Theatre’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, as the heroine who takes to the wheel and puts Phantom through its paces. Herself a symbol of non-conformity and unapologetic success, Christie’s role boldly challenges preconceived impressions of Phantom owners. Says Rankin: “enjoyable challenge to convey the wild side of Phantom....”
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Actress Robin Givens has played many roles in her life, retiring wallflower not being among them. She burst onto the scene as the beautiful and brainy Darlene on Head of the Class, a sitcom that aired on ABC from 1986 to 1991. Those same years brought a media explosion as good girl Givens fell in love with, married and then divorced, boxing’s former world heavyweight champion, Mike Tyson. The tumultuous pairing was brief and quickly devolved into a he said/she said of accusations about abuse and domestic violence, allegations which Tyson himself later publicly conceded to. Throughout the 1990s and early 2000s, Givens picked up the pieces with a string of film roles including A Rage in Harlem with the late Gregory Hines, Forest Whitaker and Danny Glover; Boomerang opposite Halle Berry and Givens’ former flame-turned-colleague, Eddie Murphy; Blankman opposite Damon Wayans, and Head of State with Chris Rock. Steady work came her way, while sealing her reputation as the beautiful but dangerous femme fatale. The line between Givens’ public image and her film work continued to blur. During this time period, she became a mom to two boys and retreated from the spotlight, save for the release of her 2007 memoir, Grace Will Lead Me Home, in which she opened up about the issue of domestic violence, which she admits in the book had plagued her family for generations. This was the birth of Robin Givens, women’s advocate and outspoken crusader against domestic violence. Her speaking engagements culminated with one of her numerous appearances on the Oprah show in which she outlined her intimate journey with the issue. It is important to note that, according to The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV) more than 10 million women and men in the United States (at a rate of 20 people per minute) are subjected to domestic violence, making this an issue that does transcend gender (though women are more likely to sustain substantial physical injury at the hands of an intimate partner, at a rate of 1 in 7 women to 1 in 25 men) as well as socio-economic status. In the 2010s, Givens refocused on acting with roles on long-running daytime soap The Bold and the Beautiful, YouTube Red series Step Up: High Water (based on the film franchise), the CW’s Riverdale, and ABC’s The Fix. On June 18 of this year, Givens shined again as female lead, Stephanie Carlisle, in OWN’s newest drama series, Ambitions. Throughout our conversation, Givens held nothing back and no question was off the table as she offered thoughtful, sometimes emotionally charged, humorous, and reflective insights on her journey through womanhood and Hollywood. Deluxe Version: You took years away from the spotlight to focus on being a mom to your two sons. Now you’re back with two television shows. How did you come back with the thunder? Robin Givens: For me it wasn’t only taking a break to raise my kids. It was also a break for myself. It’s true that you feel like you are going to maintain your place in line; like everything is going to stop and wait for you. I had to realize that it’s a process again. You have to enjoy the process and begin again, and I really fell in love with acting again. When I first started acting, it wasn’t really like that. Now I can go in a room and act and do my thing and enjoy the process for what it is. Water seeks its own level. If you’re good, you’re good, and it all kind of begins again. Your most recent show, Ambitions premiered in June on the OWN Network. It seems like Oprah has always championed your career, even when the chips were down. You worked with her as an actress, and you were also on the Oprah show quite. I feel like at one point we were just friends. We did do [the mini-series] The Women of Brewster Place (1989) together, which was a huge role for me. She and I developed a genuine friendship, just as women. I don’t think it had anything to do with my career, per se. I do think that there is something to it coming full circle and being here with her now, doing this show on her network.
BARES HER SOUL AND FINDS HER PURPOSE – By Allison Kugel
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Your energy is completely different from your media image. But your name is still synonymous with Mike Tyson, the divorce heard ‘round the world and those infamous interviews. I have a better understanding of it now than I would have if you talked to me about it 15 years ago, or even 10 years ago. As a grown up, I just understand it better. I also didn’t give people anything else to talk about for a while, and so my image got stuck there. I ran into Jay-Z at a party years ago, when I was doing Chicago on Broadway, and even he was fixated on it, because it was just so big. Do you pray? I have a great relationship with God. For me, that has been a very important relationship. He’s the only father I’ve ever known. I would often sit down with God and say, “I don’t want to have to go through this.” But it’s all gotten me to where I am, both as a person and as a mom with these two kids. I grew up Catholic with a sense of the ritual of Catholicism. Certainly, I have some questions about all of that now, and some misgivings. But it is something I still do [observe]. And I always say that my ex-husband [Mike Tyson] taught me, and gave me, a true relationship with God. Ambitions airs at 10/9c on OWN. Follow Robin Givens on Twitter @therocknrobn and Instagram @robingivens. Allison Kugel is a syndicated entertainment columnist, author of the book, Journaling Fame: A memoir of a life unhinged and on the record, and owner of communications firm, Full Scale Media. Follow her on Instagram @theallisonkugel and AllisonKugel. com. Photo Credits: Courtesy of OWN/Richard Ducree, Courtesy of OWN/Guy D’Alema, Courtesy of OWN/Peggy Sirota
Liverpool Lives Its Best Life In England, America and Beyond –By Stacey Gualandi No professional English soccer team is quite as hot as the six-time Champion’s League titleholder Liverpool FC. In fact, Forbes says almost 800 million people follow LFC on social media. (Let me break that down for you: That’s 1 in 10 people on the planet!) And nowhere was that hotness more evident than during the Redmen’s pre-season, three-city U.S. victory tour…during a record-breaking heatwave earlier this year. “We love America,” says midfielder James Milner about the unprecedented fan turnout. “The fans are great everywhere we go. It’s always fun to come to America.” Being a (Las Vegas-based) Reds supporter, it was quite an honor for me to talk with the team while they trained inside Boston’s Fenway Park before their exhibition match against Sevilla. While the 97 degree-plus temps on the field left me sauna-sweaty, the players couldn’t have been more cool with this “football” novice. “It’s always hard, but that’s how pre-season has to be,” admits midfielder Georginio “Gini” Wijnaldum on adjusting to the extreme heat. “It sets the standard for the rest of the season.” Setting the standard is de rigueur for the 127-year-old club from Liverpool, England. Like the chirpy chant “Allez, Allez, Allez” says, they’ve literally conquered all of Europe with more titles earned by any team in the English Premier League. The team boasts Mo Salah, the League’s record goal scorer, and UEFA’s 2018/19 Goaltender and Player of the Year, Allison Becker and Virgil Van Dijk, respectively. “I just try to do everything I can for the team,” says Van Dijk, the awardwinning defender. “Like everyone else, I have an important role. I just want to do my job and enjoy every bit of it.” It’s that team ethos of collectivism—fans, management and players supporting each other—that sets Liverpool FC apart from other professional teams. This commitment to unity is emboldened by the squad’s famous pre-game anthem, You’ll Never Walk Alone, and is what attracted German manager Juergen Klopp. “We can build on last season, and what we always want to do is to create memories for ourselves and the fans,” says Klopp. “In 30 years, looking back, you can not avoid a smile on your face. That is the plan.” “I think [our] manager sort of sets the ball rolling with what he demands from us,” says Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who in the summer signed a new long-term contract (and is dating Little Mix singer Perrie Edwards, if you follow the British press). “We’re generally a good group of lads: We have a good mix on our team— quite a lot of young guys—but everyone’s hungry, and willing to learn and respect each other totally. There are no bad big egos. We haven’t got any of that on this team.” Milner—the oldest player on Liverpool—echoes Ox’s belief, both on and off the pitch. In fact, he’s written a book specifically for faithful footy followers titled Ask a Footballer, due out in October. “[It includes] questions from the fans: We get to answer what they really want to hear, more about football in general than about me,” says the versatile veteran. Now the “Pride of Mersyside” is hitting its stride stateside. This summer, tens of thousands of supporters came from all over the country for the rare chance to see their club at all-American venues like Notre Dame, Fenway Park and Yankee Stadium. Boston’s House of Blues even had a standing-room-only “Boss Night,” where everyone sang popular tunes about the team and their triumphs. It was the perfect opportunity to laud the lad’s legendary status. Perhaps there is no one better than team captain Jordan Henderson to sum up the entire tour: “We’ve had a lot of time to reflect [on last season], but now its about the future and what we can do moving forward.” But does that include signed copies of Milner’s book for the whole team? “I should get it for free,” jokes Van Dijk. “I want him to sign it if i get it for free, otherwise I’m going to be angry.”
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MAN OF THE YEAR
Jonathan Dean, DDS
DVM’S 2019 MAN OF THE YEAR DELIVERS SERVICE WITH HEART AND A SMILE
– By Ashlee Demartino
Deluxe Version: We have to ask the obvious: How did you feel about being named DVM’s Man Of The Year? Johnathan Dean: It was surprise and a great honor! What decisions did you make during your career that you feel helped get you where you are today? Helping people has always been a passion of mine, and for that reason, I decided to choose a career in dentistry. As a student-athlete at the University of Virginia, I had many opportunities to volunteer with youth in the area. As a result, I deferred dental school for a year and went into teaching. I then enrolled in dental school at the University of Maryland. After finishing school, I decided to enter the United States Air Force as a dental officer and was stationed at Nellis Air Force Base. I enjoyed Vegas, and I decided to make it my home. I began my dental practice shortly after that. I have been practicing in Las Vegas for over 15 years, constantly expanding my expertise and providing my patients with the best dental treatment available.
Your practices are Summerlin Smiles and Distinctive Smiles of Las Vegas. In your opinion, what do you think sets your services apart from other dental offices in the area? I enjoy getting to know my patients and blowing away previous misconceptions of what a dental visit is. The staff is customer service-oriented, and the office is visibly stunning and state of the art (including ITERO digital scanning, 3D CBCT technology, and even a photo studio!). One patient referred to the office as a member of her “Life Team”: a member that she trusts to help keep her healthy through the rest of life. I love practicing dentistry this way and I think it is reflected in the satisfaction of my patients. We know that philanthropy is important to you: Do you have any upcoming charity work or passion-projects that you’re working on? I’m a volunteer “Dental Career Mentor”: Students considering a dental career can observe the profession first hand in my office. To date we have had eight mentees become dentists or hygienists (and there are many
more to come)! I’m also a speaker and sponsor for Leadership for Tomorrow, which is a group that’s empowering a new generation of diverse leaders. I volunteer for 100 Black Men of Las Vegas, where we create environments where children and their families are inspired to dream; be challenged to achieve; and feel empowered to become self-sufficient shareholders in the community. And I sponsor Healing Hands Abroad; Hoop for Hope; and the Ellis Acres Foundation. Has anything new happened to you since being named MOTY? In 2017 I married and became a father, so, many of my new happenings have been discovering how entertaining weekend nights can be at home and creating memories with family and friends. What’s next for you, professionally? I am looking forward to increasing my presence in dentistry and in the local community by keeping Las Vegas beautiful and smiling.
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Infertility is a scary word no one wants to hear when they are trying to grow their family; however, it doesn’t have to be. And as I learned in my own journey…fertility doctors are not scary people, they are miracle workers.
Vinay Gunnala, MD, of Southwest Fertility is that kind of miracle worker. “We truly believe in what we are doing here,” he says of the Phoenix practice…which has become a family affair now that he has joined his mother, Sujatha Gunnala, MD, at the office she founded in 1980. “We have stood the test of time,” he adds. “Not only is she my mother, but she is also our medical director [and founded the office] in 1980, which [was] the start of IVF in the United States. [That] she has maintained it through four decades says a lot about her, about our staff, and about our mission.” Gunnala received his undergraduate degree in Mammalian Physiology and Neuroscience at University of California, San Diego, and his medical degree from the University of Arizona’s College of Medicine in Tucson. He went on to complete his residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at New York Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center, and his fellowship training in Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility at Weill Cornell Medical. “It was never forced on me,” notes Gunnala. “As a child, our dinner conversations were all about sports and school—very normal day to day stuff. But as I got older and was in college, I started thinking back to those moments when I would be out with my mother, and she would run into her patients. Seeing the impact she made on the families—that grand sense of gratitude that patients had for my mother—I knew then I wanted to do the same for families,” he says. Gunnel joined his mother’s practice in September 2018. He is hoping to continue to take Southwest Fertility into the future through an office expansion that will allow the practice to provide even better services to patients. “I hope that we continue to expand, and continue to push the limits in the world of fertility, but at the same time, never lose the roots that [my mother] grew and planted four decades ago,” says Gunnel. Gunnala hopes people will become less to speak about fertility. “It is becoming more common: more people are getting treatment for it. When you hear this scary word, people internalize it as…a permanent diagnosis; [but] once you get your, happy outcome you are no longer infertile. The more we talk about it, the more people share with family and friends and get their love and support, the more it will decrease the stigmatism that is associated with it right now.” It’s worth noting that multiple staff members at Southwest Fertility have gone through their own infertility struggles, and have also enjoyed successes. Stepping into the office, you immediately feel a sense of family. Every member of the staff shares in their patient’s big moment. “That 6- to 7-week scan—when we get to measure that heart beat—is probably the happiest few seconds of my life,” says Gunnala. “It’s a profound understanding of the emotional and physical investment that a couple has gone through, to get to…their miracle. It’s hard to put into words what that couple and our staff is going through in those 10 seconds.” For more information on Southwest Fertility visit https:// www.southwestfertilitycenter.com/.
LIFE’S LITTLE MIRACLES START AT
SOUTHWEST FERTILITY – By Ashlee Demartino Deluxe Version Magazine | 77
INSURING YOUR FUTURE WITH JOHN BALELE –By Dani Reeves
Talking about life insurance shouldn’t be an uncomfortable Balele knows how important it is to balance protecting topic; however, talking about it during family fun night a family’s needs and assets with understanding their might not be the best place to start. aspirations for their future, as well. “Life insurance can be a creation of your legacy for the rest of your future John Balele may be serious when it comes to business (he generations,” says Balele. owned a restaurant in a foreign country at the age of 22) but outside the office, it is clear to see how personable and Balele is based in Las Vegas but travels for his clients genuine Balele is. “I really care about the future of people,” regularly. “I want to be anywhere and everywhere for them. says Balele sincerely. So when an opportunity to work with This is sensitive information [that they’re sharing], so their New York Life Insurance Company presented itself, Balele home is more comfortable.” States Balele. was thrilled to be part of a prestigious company. To find more on how you can protect your family’s future, “I wanted to join New York Life because it is one of the reach John Balele at www.johnbalele.com, 702-501-9936 best,” says Balele. For nearly 175 years, New York Life has or at email@example.com. worked with people to protect their families and futures. CA Insurance Lic# 0M84885 “We believe in the importance of human guidance and entrusted relationships built on being there when our customers need us most,” says Balele. Deluxe Version Magazine | 79
FROM $12 TO MILLIONS, SERIAL ENTREPRENEUR
VIRGINIA TOALEPAI KNOWS SUCCESS MEANS STAYING THE COURSE – By Elena Castriota
Entrepreneurs often have ambitions of worldwide dominance in their field, but few have the confidence to put it in their company’s name; however, Virginia Toalepai—founder and president of World Wide Safety—knows she has what it takes to conquer the world of safety consulting. “I set goals, I have a vision, and I actually see where I want to be. I work to get there,” Toalepai explains. “The whole mission at the end of the day, for the company, is that everyone gets to go home to their families. Having that ultimate goal at the end of the day motivates me.” Originally from Samoa, Toalepai and her family moved to Las Vegas in 1998. After high school, she got married, had four children, and tried several jobs before focusing on safety and construction. When Toalepai and her husband divorced, she suddenly became a single mother of four daughters with only $12 to her name. Never one to give up, she worked tirelessly in the construction safety industry before founding World Wide Safety in 2013. She’s found success but it hasn’t been easy: Being an entrepreneur isn’t for those who can’t handle an extended absence of predictability. “The first 5 years are critical, and most people don’t make it past that. You have to be driven to take both good and bad times and not give up,” says Toalepai. “In order to be successful in anything, you have to be a driven person to maintain it.” On top of her first company’s success, Toalepai is an even rarer “serial entrepreneur”: Among her other business ventures, she runs a non-profit called RYSHOC Family that provides career training for kids who can’t afford college, as well as for homeless youth. “We partner up with companies that can conduct a partnership program and be able to train and hire them after they attend high school and offer a job,” Toalepai explains. “You don’t have to have a college degree to be successful.” Toalepai is engaged to be married Christopher Krieg in December and is incredibly grateful for her life and everyone who’s in it: her family, her coworkers, and everyone in the construction business. “I’m grateful for God—that’s number one. He has always been there since day one, especially at my lowest moments; and my divorce; and, my trials of running my business and coming from nothing,” Toalepai says. “I’m just grateful for the trials. It shaped me into who I am today.”
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Virgina Toalepai at the 2019 Saftey Awards with special guest, Dr. Bryan Abasolo (newlywed to ABC’s The Bachelorette star, Rachel Lindsey.)
Mix IN LUXURY
WOMEN OF WONDER
June 24, Las Vegas. The top women in the city gathered to celebrate our summer Women Of Wonder honorees inside Rosina Bar at The Venetian Resort with cocktails by Casamigos and gifts from BIKINI.COM. Pictured: Jamillette Gaxiola, Dayna Roselli, Tyra Bell-Holland, Debbie Carroll, Virginia Toalepai, Michelle Howard, Fara Ruskin, Michelle Premone, Mery Nikolova, and Kirsty McCallan.
Mix IN LUXURY
COVETED COLLECTIONS LAUNCH August 24, Las Vegas. Coveted Collections launches with a fashion show at Fresh Wata featuring styles from leading designers. Pictured: Azana Serene, Alisha Alexander, Jamillette Gaxiola, Eric Jones, Mikey P., Kailah Casillas, Dani Reeves, Sydni Sayles, Trina Marie, Tashi Campbell, and Ellen Magliulo.
Think Italian... Simple. True. Italian.
Mix IN LUXURY
REAL ESTATE AWARDS
June 28, Las Vegas. The finest professionals in the real estate community gathered to celebrate the 2019 Real Estate Awards inside The Cosmopolitan Of Las Vegas at Barbershop Cuts & Cocktails. Pictured: Annette Daskalos, Helder Mejia, Dani Reeves, Frank Napoli, Collin Martinez, Ryan Barraza, Rexalyn Walberg, Tinah Castillo, Gene Northup, Andy Gil, Beatrice Moore.
Casamigos creators George Clooney, Rande Gerber and Mike Meldman introduce Casamigos Mezcal to the family. Made in Santiago Matatlán, Oaxaca, Mexico, Casamigos Mezcal is artisanal and made from 100 percent Espadín agaves. Available in Joven (or Blanco), the spirit is balanced and elegant, offering harmonious hints of sweet fruit and herbal aromas. The delicate tones of smoke, hints of licorice and mineral nuances lead to a long silky finish. The style of the hand-crafted bottle was designed by Rande Gerber using a unique process ensuring no bottle will ever be the same. Says Gerber: “This is a bottle people will want to take home after they finish drinking it, and my collection sure is growing fast.”
MEZCAL COCKTAILS A HANDCRAFTED SELECTION OF OUR FAVORITE CASAMIGOS MEZCAL COCKTAILS
CASA MEZCAL LEMONADE 1 oz. Casamigos Mezcal 1 oz. Casamigos Blanco Tequila .5 oz. Fresh Lemon Juice .5 oz. Simple Syrup 8–10 Mint Leaves ¼ Barspoon Activated Charcoal ½ Thick Rim of Black Lava Salt/Sugar Top off with Lemonade Mint Sprig Method: Combine all ingredients into a tin shaker. Muddle herbs, add ice and shake well. Strain into Collins glass and add fresh ice. Top off with lemonade and garnish with a mint sprig.
HUMO VERDE 1 oz. Casamigos Mezcal 1 oz. Casamigos Blanco Tequila 1 oz. Fresh Lime Juice .75 oz. Simple Syrup 4 Basil Leaves 2 Thyme Sprigs 2 one-inch Slices Grilled Green Poblano Peppers 1-inch Each Grilled Poblano Slice and Dried Thyme Method: Combine all ingredients into a tin shaker and muddle herbs/pepper. Add ice and shake well. Fine strain into rocks glass and add fresh ice. Garnish with a grilled poblano slice and dried thyme.
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LAS VEGAS HOT NEW EATS
IS ACCLAIMED CHEF JAMES TREES’ NEXT DELICIOUS WIN – By Stacey Gualandi I HAVE A NEW BFF, AND HER NAME IS ADA. After dining with her earlier this summer, I haven’t stopped thinking about her, and the reason is very simple: She’s charming; casual (yet elegant) and she serves the “best” ice cream. More on that in a moment…but first, if I’m going to talk honestly about her with you, I have to come clean: My new BFF? She isn’t Ada but Ada’s, a restaurant neatly tucked in the heart of Summerlin’s Tivoli Village on the west side of Las Vegas, and the third brainchild of Chef James Trees, a Vegas native with deep roots in town (he trained under Bradley Ogden, Michael Mina and Gordon Ramsay, to name but a few). In just 18 months, Trees has branched out across the Valley, adding Ada’s to his Esther’s Kitchen—Trees’ acclaimed soul food spot in the Downtown Las Vegas Arts District—and his counter-in-the-sky 108 Eats located inside The Strat on the Strip.
Photos by Eric Ita
“We really wanted to bring Summerlin the restaurant we think it deserves,” says Trees of Ada’s, which offers an all-day menu of seasonal Italian favorites. “We’ve had such great support from our Summerlin neighbors at Esther’s that we decided very quickly our follow-up project would be there.” Inspired by the spirit(s) of legendary bar woman Ada Coleman of London’s Savoy Hotel, Ada’s is driven by the idea that “hospitality begins with offering every guest the best ingredients, preparation, and service possible.” Its motto: “You deserve the best!” Well, I’m here to say, I got served. Here’s how you can, too: It should begin with liquid courage, thanks to General Manager Sonia Stelea’s distinctive cocktail program. One can choose among three separate wine lists: snack, pizza or dinner (or if you’re feeling frisky, indulge in a well-crafted cocktail from a roaming bar cart).
I tried the “Pretty in Pink,” my first gin experience. (Pro tip: If you look closely at the drink names, you’ll notice Trees is a bonafide John Hughes film fan.) For the main course, go crazy. I did. Start with Trees’ signature house-made bread. Then, savor the mussels, market salad, beets with ricotta gnudi, pistachio pesto gemelli, and the mushroom polenta—all my personal favorites. (And note: I was sharing with two other eager eaters. Don’t judge.) No matter what, save room for Ada’s pizza de résistance: Trees painstakingly offers over a dozen pies on the menu...each outstanding in its own right, but the chicken pesto was our top pick. The creatively complex menu tastes and feels just like fine dining, yet the modern Danish space—and knowledgeable staff—are casual and approachable. That juxtaposition has quickly made Ada’s a local favorite, and is helping Tivoli Village rebrand as an emerging lifestyle center with a cutting-edge lineup of culinary hot spots…but it also might have something to do with the ice cream counter right at the entrance. Keeping in line with its motto, Ada’s serves “Best Creamery,” a satisfying Philadelphia-style ice cream with ultra-premium rotating ingredients under Chef de Cuisine Dylan Jobsz’ keen taste buds. (Due to its proximity to the front door, don’t be surprised if your dining experience begins with a decadent sweet.) I’ll go out on a limb and bet that with Ada’s, Chef Trees has hit the restaurant trifecta. And with his current and future success, there’s no stopping him from spreading his culinary seed across Las Vegas and (if we’re lucky), beyond.
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LAS VEGAS HOT NEW EATS
LET’S TACO ‘BOUT
SANTOS GUISADOS TACOS AND BEER – By Dani Reeves
How do tacos say grace? “Lettuce pray.” Cute, right? The truth is, at Santos Guisados Tacos and Beer, the motto really is “Pray for Tacos,” and a-MEN are your prayers answered with authentic Mexican flavors all wrapped up in handmade, corn masa tortillas! Owner Eduardo Cordova gave Deluxe Version Magazine the ultimate tour of a fabulous addition to the thriving Downtown Las Vegas restaurant scene. “I always saw my restaurant Downtown,” says Cordova. “There is a magic about Downtown right now. And when I first saw the building, the windows reminded me of the churches in Mexico.” Sure, it’s easy to find tacos in Vegas, says Cordova, but what Santos is doing is different. “I wanted to really do something special, but I wanted to go deep into the culture,” he says. “‘Guisados’—slow-cooked meats— are wrapped in banana leaves and cooked for 12 hours. Guisados are very traditional. It’s a much longer process, but it brings an art to the food,” he says proudly. Santos’ menu is full of recipes passed on from Cordova’s grandmother and mother. (Fact: Cordova’s aunt was making salsa the day of this interview.) Smiling as he talked about his childhood, Cordova says his family was very superstitious. “It’s a common thing in our culture for us to surround ourselves with saints and angels because we believe they help guide us.
Santos means saints in Spanish.” The restaurant is small and intimate but big on character, as Cordova’s playful side can be found throughout the space. During lunch, orders can be placed at the “Taconfessional” window while some of Cordova’s favorite saints—Saint Beyonce, Saint Gaga, Saint Elvis—are displayed on Santos’ Wall of Saints. Don’t forget to look for the Saint of the Day… which, the day of our visit, happened to be the late but so great Anthony Bourdain. Santos Guisados Tacos and Beeris located on the corner of 7th and Carson in Downtown Las Vegas. It opens for lunch at 11 a.m., after 4 p.m. the restaurant becomes a full-service experience. “I wanted to bring in the essence of growing up in Mexico, but wanted to also be playful with it,” says Cordova. We think he did.
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NOT YOUR ORDINARY ARTIST
EBON LURKS – The Label Music Group
R&B and pop sensation—23 year old Ebon Lurks—has movie-star good looks, mesmerizing tone and thousands of diehard fans. Lurks has countless popular covers on YouTube that have helped him reach the masses. Numerous covers of his favorite artists Justin Bieber and Chris Brown have helped Lurks continue to build his fan base. But there’s more to the Tulsa, Okla. native’s story than raw talent, good looks and popular videos that prompt many fans. Growing up, Lurks experienced the tragic murder of both his parents when he was 2 years old. Raised by his grandmother and two aunts, he was always exposed to different genres of music. They introduced him to R&B, soul, doo-wop and old-school R&B, and it helped mold Lurks and find his sound. Lurks knew he was born for the big stage when he performed at many open mic’s around Oklahoma in front of hundreds of his peers and family. Lurks soon turned to music as a source of solace and found inspiration to pursue music full time. Lurks doesn’t only like singing but he enjoys being part of the production and writing process of his music. He taught himself to play the acoustic guitar through YouTube tutorials and now incorporates it in his live shows. Lurks is ready to push his career to the next level and give the legion of fans some original music. Fresh off his appearance on Fox’s singing competition, The Four and gaining 70k+ new fans along with over 4 million views on his Congratulations cover after being voted as one of the fans favorite, he released his EP Sorry I’m Late in September 2018. One year later, he released Drip Different, capturing over 1 million streams and 1.4 million views on YouTube in just 30 days. Considering his success with his cover songs, original music and TV appearances there’s no telling where this wave of newfound fame will take him. With undeniable talent and charm, thousands of devoted fans and more original music on the way, Lurks stands poised to fulfill his dreams and share his passion for music with millions across the globe. Courtesy of the The Label Music Group founded by Micheal Grammy and Shyon Keoppel.
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With over 6 million streams on his first EP, Ebon Lurks says, “As soon as I stand up I stand out. Soon the world will see that I’m different.”
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