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Archive for CELEBRITIES & ENTERTAINMENT

The Latest Look at the Cars of the Stars via [msnautos]

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OPULUXE Lounge GroovesPlayList

Stars and Their Cars

By Josh
Condon
of MSN Autos

Us Weekly magazine might tell you that stars are “just like us.”
But, in reality, they aren’t. We find they tend to drive better cars —
much better cars, ranging from the absurd to the eco-conscious to the
practical-chic. But this is nothing new. The love affair between celebs
and tasty automobiles is well-documented. And while piloting a
million-dollar-plus Ferrari Enzo around town to pick up, say, an iced
caffè mocha at the local Starbucks might seem like overkill to you,
it’s normal to these luminaries. Here we highlight 10 coveted,
cutting-edge or just plain weird rides and the celebs who own them.

Paris Hilton in her Bentley (© Rex Features)

Paris Hilton in her Bentley



Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren

Multitasker Pharrel
Williams
— one-half of the producing duo the Neptunes, front man
for the band N.E.R.D and co-creator of the fashion lines Billionaire
Boys Club and Ice Cream — is known for his distinct personal style at
least as much as for his musical prowess, and said style extends to his
rides. Not only does he have a $455,000 Mercedes-Benz
SLR McLaren
with a supercharged 5.5L V8 engine parked in his
driveway, he also counts a $1 million, carbon-fiber, Formula 1-inspired
Ferrari
Enzo
(top speed: 221 mph) for his daily errands about town.

Pharrel Williams and Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren (© AP Photo/Matt  <br/>Dunham/Mercedes-Benz USA)

Pharrel Williams and the Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren

Audi R8 Supercar

Lauren
Conrad
is a TV star from the MTV shows “Laguna Beach” and “The
Hills.” While you can easily say her roles lack, well, substance, you
cannot say the same for Conrad’s ride. It is full of it, in a good way.
She rides around Los Angeles in the incredible Audi
R8
supercar. The midmounted monster — which goes zero to 60 mph in
4.6 seconds, delivers 317 lb-ft of torque and has a top speed of 187
mph — is also favored by macho types such as English soccer ace Robbie
Fowler and actor David Hasselhoff. So, while seeing a tiny, blond,
SoCal reality TV star tooling around in this powerhouse is a bit
disconcerting, it’s also, dare we say it, totally awesome! It sure
beats Paris Hilton’s cringe-inducing pink
Bentley
.

Lauren Conrad Audi R8 (© Louise Barnsley/Nate  <br/>Jones/PacificCoastNews.com)

Lauren Conrad and her Audi R8

1968 Ford Mustang Cobra

While the Jonas Brothers’ music may appeal to the tween girl set,
the car Nick
Jonas
drives comes straight out of a ZZ Top video. As soon as he
turned 16, the Disney-produced guitar player and vocalist was spotted
cruising around his Toluca Lake, Calif., neighborhood in a shiny black
1968 Ford Mustang Cobra with white racing stripes. Although we doubt
the young crooner spent hours rehabilitating the classic muscle car
getting grease under those manicured nails, we have to give him credit
for one badass ride.

Nick Jonas Driving 1968 Mustang (© Gaz Shirley/Matt Symons)

Nick Jonas and his vintage 1968 Ford Mustang Cobra

GMC Yukon Hybrid

For at least one nod to practicality on this list, we turn to “Walk
the Line” actress Reese
Witherspoon
and her vehicle of choice. Rather than the ever-popular
Toyota
Prius
favored by Hollywood’s eco warriors, or the MINI
Cooper
(a hit with “Twilight” star Kristen Stewart), this petite
thespian and mother drives to and fro in a massive GMC
Yukon Hybrid
. And while the SUV’s gas mileage is not exactly at
Prius levels (it gets about 21 mpg on the highway), it sports a monster
V8 engine and can tow up to 6,000 pounds. What a famous Hollywood
actress commanding $15 million to $20 million per picture needs with
that kind of power is unclear, but it’s pretty cool nonetheless.

Reese Witherspoon and GMC Yukon Hybrid (© AP Photo/Jacquelyn  <br/>Martin / General Motors)

Reese Witherspoon and the GMC Yukon Hybrid

Tesla Roadster

While Fergie is probably the most recognized member of the Black
Eyed Peas, will.i.am
is definitely the most politically minded, as proven by his bizarre
“hologram” in a ratings stunt with CNN’s Anderson Cooper after the 2008
presidential election. Nonetheless, the musician puts his environmental
politics into action with his choice of car, the Tesla
Roadster
. Based on the super-sporty Lotus Elise, this pure
electric racer does zero to 60 mph in 3.9 seconds. It develops 248
horsepower and gets 244 miles per charge. It’s so sporty, in fact, that
another famous musician and Tesla owner — Flea, bassist for the Red
Hot Chili Peppers — has said that it makes his Porsche feel “like a
golf cart.”

will.i.am and Tesla Roadster (© AP Photo/Matt Dunham  <br/>/Mercedes-Benz USA)

will.i.am and the Tesla Roadster

1959 Rolls-Royce Convertible

Normally, music superstar <a onclick=”window.open(this.href);return
false;” href=”http://music.msn.com/music/artist-photos/beyonc%c3%a9/”>Beyoncé
Knowles is spotted with the type of entourage that suggests she
doesn’t spend too much time actually driving herself anywhere. And
that’s a shame, considering that on her 25th birthday, her
then-boyfriend (now husband), rapper and music mogul Jay-Z, surprised
her with a 1959 Rolls-Royce
convertible. No definite details as to model — though as a convertible
it’s most likely a Silver Cloud. Regardless, it’s hard to argue with a
classic luxury automobile reported to be worth a cool million bucks as a
“congratulations for being one year older” gift.

Beyonce and Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud (© AP Photo/Richard Drew)

Beyoncé and the Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud

Bugatti Veyron

Who knew being obnoxious on overhyped network TV contests was so
lucrative? One look at the Bugatti Veyron that “American Idol” judge Simon
Cowell
ponied up $1.7 million for tells us everything we need to
know about the financial prospects of pomposity. With a top speed of
more than 253 mph, the Veyron holds the title of the fastest (and most
expensive) street-legal car on the road today. Consequently, Cowell can
sit in judgment of all other motorists around him, anywhere in the
world. Even more proof that nice guys finish last: Cowell purchased the
Bugatti within a few days of picking up a $434,000 Rolls-Royce Phantom
Drophead Coupe.

<a class=”single MSNVideo” onclick=”return
Msn.Navigation.OpenNew(event,this)” href=”http://video.msn.com/video.aspx?mkt=us&tab=left&vid=54ce6ab2-1e20-4acf-abe7-2103dc8ff0b0″&gt;Watch
Video:
Introducing the Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Grand
Sport

Simon Cowell and Bugatti Veyron (© AP Photo/Dan Steinberg)

Simon Cowell and the Bugatti Veyron

Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupe

Noted black-on-black (aka “murdered out”) luxury vehicle enthusiast
and sometime-international soccer star David
Beckham
has been spotted driving around Los Angeles in a sleek,
blacked-out Rolls-Royce
Phantom Drophead Coupe
. The ride’s color scheme matches his
$400,000 customized Porsche
911
Cabriolet Turbo and jacked-up Jeep
Wrangler
, and rounds out the luxury lineup in his garage, which
also includes a Ferrari
F430
and a V10
Lamborghini Gallardo
. His wife, Victoria — aka Posh, former Spice
Girl turned Marc Jacobs muse and international fashion plate — plays
the ivory to Becks’ ebony in a white Porsche 911 Cabriolet.

David Beckham Driving Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupe (©  <br/>Johnstone, Symons, PacificCoastNews.com)

David Beckham and his Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupe

GM EcoJet

Jay
Leno
isn’t your typical celebrity car owner. He is actually a true
automotive enthusiast extraordinaire. His collection of rare and odd
vintage rides is legendary. But, as a true gearhead, Leno is just as
impressed by speed and power as by quirk and collectability. Take his
EcoJet prototype, for instance. Leno helped design the one-of-a-kind
supercar (with help from his own Big Dog garage team and the design
gurus at General Motors). It is essentially a modified Corvette
Z06
that runs on biodiesel and is powered by a 650-horsepower
LT-101 jet engine, similar to the ones found in Coast Guard
helicopters. The team is still working out the kinks to get it on the
road, but in the meantime you can see (and hear) Leno and team firing
it up at his official
car Web site
.

Watch:
Jay Leno and his EcoJet

Jay Leno With EcoJet Concept (© General Motors and Wieck Media  <br/>Services, Inc.)

Jay Leno and his turbine-powered EcoJet

1962 Ferrari 250 GTO

American fashion icon Ralph Lauren’s car collection has everything
from the ultraclassic (Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Gullwing Coupe) to the
iconic (Porsche 550 Spyder) to the bizarre (Jaguar XKD) — and those are
just some of his cars from 1955! It’s hard to choose favorites among
such a select stable, but if we could abscond with one of his
incredible rides, chances are it would be the 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO.
Only 39 of these unmistakable Italian beauties were produced between
1962 and 1964, and they are widely considered to be one of Enzo
Ferrari’s greatest achievements — if not the greatest. And they’re
priced accordingly: 250 GTOs (top speed: 170 mph) have sold at auctions
over the years for anywhere from $2 million to more than $15 million.

Pictures:
Vintage Ferraris

1962 Ferrari GTO (© The Ralph Lauren Collection)

Ralph Lauren’s 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO




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Top 10 A-List Celebrity Romantic Getaways via [romowtravelblog]

Many celebrities
like to keep their love life under wraps, so it’s not surprising that
countless celebrity couples have often been spotted on romantic
getaways.

For many celebrity couples, these romantic retreats are one of their
few opportunities to spend quality time together, away from their
hectic work schedules, A-list events and hordes of fans. So when they
do get the opportunity to escape on a romantic getaway, they ensure
that the destination they choose fits the bill perfectly – just as
these celebrity couple getaways do:

1. Maldives

maldives
The picture-perfect
Maldives is a hot spot for A-list celebrity couples who want to cosy up
in the private beach-side huts on the paradise isles in the Indian
Ocean.

Celebrity sightings: Beyonce and Jay-Z,
Naomi Campbell and Vladislav Doronin, Catherine Zeta Jones
and Michael Douglas, Kate Moss, Sadie Frost, Eva Longoria, Jude Law, Penelope Cruz.

2. Dubai

dubai
“The star of the Middle East”
boasts the world’s only seven-star hotel – the Burj Al Arab. With
suites priced from US$2,000 up to US$28,000 per night, it’s no wonder
celebrities often feature on the hotel’s guest list.

Celebrity sightings: Claudia Schiffer, Michael Schumacher, David and
Victoria Beckham, Serena and Venus Williams.

3. Italy

italy
The food, the wine, the
culture, the art, and, of course, the romance, make Italy a top
celebrity couple getaway destination. As an extra treat for their
beloved, celebrity couples can shop to their heart’s content at Italy’s
many world-renowned fashion houses.

Celebrity sightings: George Clooney,
Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, Jennifer Aniston, Sylvester Stallone.

4. Barbados

barbados
As well as being renowned
for being the birthplace of singer Rihanna, this Caribbean island is
also home to some of the world’s most spectacular white sand beaches
with their glittering turquoise waters, as well as fine dining and
swanky hotels.

Celebrity sightings: Elton John, Prince Andrew, Sting, David and
Victoria Beckham, Will Smith, Tiger Woods.

5. Bahamas

bahamas
Only 40 out of more than
700 of the islands of the Bahamas are inhabited. It’s no wonder then
that it’s a popular destination for celebrity couples seeking privacy.
When celebrities have had enough of soaking up the sun amid gorgeous
beaches, they can indulge in the islands’ glitzy nightlife.

Celebrity sightings: Jennifer Hudson, Carrie Underwood, Lily Allen.

6. Miami

miami
Fun-loving celebrity couples
love heading to Miami for some fun under the sun. Stars can go
club-hopping all night long at South Beach, grooving to Latin beats.

Celebrity sightings: Shakira, Janet Jackson, Gwen Stefani, Jennifer
Lopez, Justin Timberlake, Cameron Diaz, Beyonce, Kate Moss.

7. French Riviera

french riviera
One of the jewels of
the Mediterranean, the French Riviera, or Côte d’Azur in French,
provides for one of the most romantic backdrops in the world. It is
dotted with many luxury hotels as well as private yachts.

Celebrity sightings: Joan Collins, Lily Allen, Elton John, Elizabeth
Hurley, Catherine Zeta Jones and Michael Douglas, Brad Pitt and
Angelina Jolie.

8. Mexico

mexico
It may not be associated
with glitz and glamour, but Mexico still attracts many celebrity
couples thanks to its warm sun and palm-tree lined beaches. Its
nightlife is another selling point, and celebrities can often be found
downing tequila shots in one of Mexico’s many bars and clubs.

Celebrity sightings: Britney Spears,
Heidi Klum, Sienna Miller, Jennifer Aniston and John Mayer.

9. Rio de Janeiro

rio
The second largest city of
Brazil is the perfect place for celebrity couples to get away from it
all and let their head down. Whether celebrities are off to the
flamboyant Carnaval, to an action-packed football match, or to the
beach to dance some samba on the sand, Rio always guarantees them a
good time.

Celebrity sightings: Naomi Campbell, Calvin Klein, Mick Jagger, Gisele
Bündchen.

10. Paris

paris
No romantic getaway list
would be complete without the world’s capital of romance – Paris. When
celebrity couples are in the mood for romance, they head to the City of
Lights – a place just as glamorous, fashionable, and famous as they
are.

Celebrity sightings: Reese Witherspoon and Jake Gyllenhaal, Katy
Perry, Dita Von Teese, Emma Watson.


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Giving Back: InStyle’s Shining Stars via [instyle]

In Style‘s Shining Stars

Ali Larter

HER PASSION: THE ART OF ELYSIUM
“At Art of Elysium we work with kids of all ages. From cancer to pneumonia, their conditions vary. You don’t know if they are ever going to get to leave the hospital. Art of Elysium takes actors and artists and pairs them with the children. My first visit was two years ago, and the program keeps growing. We go into various hospitals to read books, play with toys, do different art projects, sometimes just sit with the children and hold their hands. One kid said, ‘I kind of want to talk about Heroes,’ and so I hung out with him and chatted. It’s not changing the world, but it is bringing children a moment of peace.”

Shining Stars 2008, Ali Larter

Alex Cayley

WHAT YOU CAN DO: Donate art supplies, costumes, musical instruments or children’s books. A $30 donation will fund a creative arts workshop for one child. To learn more, visit theartofelysium.org.

Orlando Bloom

HIS PASSION: UNICEF
“As an ambassador for Unicef, I’m a voice for children without basic necessities we take for granted—safe drinking water, electricity, a roof over our heads. It’s heart-wrenching. I’ve traveled to Nepal, and it’s incredible to see what a huge impact the fund has on communities there. I met a 6-year-old named Rita who used to spend half of her day collecting water for her family. The water is not clean, so in these environments an intestinal problem can be a killer for kids. A simple tap, which costs about $20, can provide water to the whole community—for life! Now instead of collecting water all day, Rita can go to school and have the possibility of a better life.”

Shining Stars 2008, Orlando Bloom

Alex Cayley

WHAT YOU CAN DO: Donate online at unicef.org, or purchase Unicef items, such as holiday cards, stationery and toys.

Tyra Banks

HER PASSION: THE TZONE FOUNDATION
“When I was young, I went through a very insecure time in my life. No matter how much self-esteem I have now, that girl still lives inside of me. Because of my struggle, I always felt that I had a calling to work with teens. There are so many pressures that come with being a girl, and I want to give young women the strength to succeed in our society in which there are so many difficult images to live up to. In 1999 I started TZone and took a group of girls for a weeklong camping trip in the mountains outside of L.A. In 2004 TZone became a national public foundation. We look for community-based organizations that encourage girls to be leaders, not followers. It gives me pleasure to help other people’s dreams come true.”

WHAT YOU CAN DO: To donate, visit tzonefoundation.org.

Don Cheadle

HIS PASSION: COLLEGE SUMMIT
“A friend in the admissions office at Yale created this program where high school counselors identify students who have potential but risk falling through the cracks. For many of those who come from broken homes or are being seduced by gangs, a college education would be hopeless if not for this program. College Summit teaches them how to write their admissions essays during an intensive camp. I’ve been a writing coach there for two years. On the final night of camp, the kids often stay up all night reading each other’s essays. And that is what you see: It becomes viral, and they start to take ownership and pride. Very few people in the past have pointed to them and said, ‘Wow, you are an exceptional person.'”

Shining Stars 2008, Don Cheadle

Alex Cayley

WHAT YOU CAN DO: A donation of $50 sponsors a student for one month, and College Summit matches all donations through December 31. To learn more, visit collegesummit.org.

Jenny McCarthy

HER PASSION: GENERATION RESCUE
“When my son, Evan, was diagnosed with autism in 2005, I found Generation Rescue, where parents teach other parents about effective biomedical treatments—diet, vitamins, detox, cleansing. Evan is now 6, and I consider him recovered. When he improved, I started writing (Louder Than Words and Mother Warriors) to show the world how I did it, my way of paying it forward. Every day the organization is out there raising awareness, teaching parents, and building an online resource for pediatricians who are looking for alternative treatments for autism. Sometimes I’m on the phone all day, coaching a new mom or figuring out a campaign. It is just what I’m supposed to do.”
Shining Stars 2008, Jenny McCarthy

Alex Cayley

WHAT YOU CAN DO: Become a Rescue Angel and volunteer to help parents of autistic children, or make a donation at generationrescue.org.



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Pedro Almodovar Fashion Shoot – Designers in Pedro Almodovar via [Harper’sBazaar and stylefrizz]

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The Mode of Almodóvar

Bazaar recasts the beloved Spanish director‘s most
memorable cinematic scenes with some of fashion‘s most famous faces.

Pedro Almodóvar officially reached an iconic
standard so high (by Hollywood value charts) that he’s honored with a Harper’s
Bazaar
pictorial! And not just any! The Mode of Almodovar,
featured in the magazine’s March 2010 issue (yes, the Kate
the Great one) featurs some equally iconic designers recreating
Almodovar’s movie posters.

I never imagined the
Kaiser
in one of Almodovar flics so I’ll keep an open spirit while
trying to get these re-edits under my skin! (the story continues right
after the jump with more images! Click here for the gallery!)

The Mode of Almodovar Gaultier

The minor changes you’re picking on are not going to change one pleat
of the general idea: Almodovar the Great, Kate
the Great (Cindy the Great)
. This is one great issue for Harper’s Bazaar.
Some they nail, some they don’t. Almodovar is a go, for sure! Not to
mention it’s always a pleasure (at least in my calendar) when fashion designers step out into the light and do some honest
modelling! Who’s your favorite? (photos via)

The Mode of Almodovar Lagerfeld

The Mode <br/>of Almodovar



The  <br/>Mode of Almodovar 3




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Learn How to Tell TV’s Many Cake Shows Apart via [NYMag]

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OPULUXE Lounge GroovesPlayList


Don’t Be a Cakeist: Learn How to Tell TV’s Many
Cake Shows Apart

What’s up with TV’s cake-show obsession? Tonight kicks off the
second season of TLC’s Ultimate Cake-Off, which is yet another
seven-layer look at bakers. How did cake shows join makeovers,
families with 10 million kids, and ballroom dancing as a reality-TV
staple subject? Is it that these shows act as prequels to the popular Biggest
Loser
? Whatever the reason, cake lovers have a plethora of
options to choose from, so here’s a handy, high-calorie guide to find
the right show for you.
Cake Boss
Amazing Wedding Cakes We TV
Ace of Cakes Food Network
Ultimate Cake-Off TLC
Cake Boss TLC Amazing
Wedding Cakes WE TV
Ace of Cakes Food Network Ultimate
Cake-Off TLC
Category Reality Reality Reality Reality competition
Log Line The shouty Valastro family yells about flour and edible roses at
Carlo’s City Hall Bake Shop in Hoboken, New Jersey.
Four different bakeries around the country create couples’ dream
wedding cakes.
A staff of hipster bakers turn out desserts at Baltimore’s Charm
City Cakes.
Baker contestants have nine hours to create a cake for a specific
event, and are judged by technical difficulty and aesthetic appeal.
Main Character Buddy Valastro, the mafioso-like cake boss, and the toughest guy
ever to create Sesame Street characters out of butter cream.
The four bakeries offer a mix of personalities, from edgy Lauri
Ditunno of Cake Alchemy in New York, to the bubbly upstarts at Merci
Beaucoup Cakes in L.A.
Tattoo-laden Duff Goldman, whose rocker style translates to blow
torches and power saws in his cake construction.
Host and Food Network personality George Duran, a more bland Tom
Colicchio.
Cake Tastes In Valastro’s words, “over-the-top delicious.” In other words,
edible bling.
Ethereal and floral, with lots of hearts, ribbons, and edible
brides and grooms.
Weirder theme cakes, like edible Viking ships and telescopes. Something for everyone, assuming everyone likes cake.
Target Audience People who love The Sopranos, but also love frosting. People who love Valentine’s Day, but also love frosting. People who love American Chopper, but also love frosting. People who love Survivor, but also love frosting.