Karolina Kurkova must have had the equivalent of Wheaties for supermodels Wednesday.
The stunning Czech, who flew in from London after attending the British Fashion Awards on Monday, really did Art Basel right. She started off her day with a mini press conference at the W South Beach to show off her collaboration with IWC Schaffhaussen’s new line of watches, a midsize model called the Portofino Collection.
The Swiss timepiece company, with boutiques in Bal Harbour and the Design District, makes most of its styles for men, so the luxury watches are on the more masculine, statement-making side.
CEO George Kern unveiled a short film called A Sparkle to the Wrist, featuring major Hollywood players who are also faces/friends of the brand. We’re talking an international cast of Austrian Christoph Waltz, Aussie Cate Blanchett, Scot Ewan McGregor, China’s Zhou Xun and Brit Emily Blunt, who was supposed to show at the Miami Beach event but did not.
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Kern explained that the bold-face-named crew was flown over to Portofino, Italy, last year to shoot the glamorous, two-minute black and white La Dolce Vita-like spot, which has gotten close to five million views on YouTube.
Their jobs didn’t seem like much of a hardship. You see the two male actors schmoozing in a cafe, then the three women dressed in suits join them. More schmoozing and posing. Playing in the background is evocative music: Amore Fermati by 1960s Italian singer Fred Bongusto. Then they all board a boat and look as if they are headed to George Clooney’s wedding (he would have made a great addition to this clip).
But actually Kurkova, who costars in another IWC film about the making of A Sparkle to the Wrist with fellow model Adriana Lima, says the two-day shoot, which started at 4 a.m. and ended at 6 p.m., was fairly intense. That’s because perfectionist Vogue photographer/filmmaker Peter Lindbergh was at the helm.
“Peter didn’t want us in hair or makeup,” said Kurkova in a beige Chloe dress and Sophia Webster heels. “He wanted to see our expression, our emotions. It was about being real and natural, being individuals. It was a beautiful blend of all of us coming together.”
When you’re in Italy, business usually mixes with pleasure. “I feel like we got to enjoy Portofino,” said Kurkova, who has a home in Miami. “It was about us being able to soak in the atmosphere and ambience and tell the story.”
How did it feel for her to hang with Hollywood big shots like Oscar winners Blanchett and Waltz?
“I think the bigger the star the more normal and grounded you are,” said the former Victoria’s Secret Angel. “Everyone got along. There was no ego, no attitude. They could have hated [me and Lima], maybe. Right? But it was a wonderful energy. There was no, ‘Oh, you can’t talk to me, don’t look at me. I’m a mega-star.’”
Good thing Kurkova has property here in Miami (with producer husband Archie Drury and son Tobin, 5). She could go home and sleep in her own bed.
Later, she stepped out in the Design District for the opening of Germany’s luxury luggage brand Rimowa. The 30-year-old went more casual, in a Delpozo white, off shoulder top and red balloon capris. Also attending the party, which served suitcase-shaped cake (!): newlywed Solange Knowles, who wore a halter-top get-up and threw no fits to speak of; an accessible Eva Longoria, in a beige pantsuit and taking selfies with any guest who asked; NYC DJ Leigh Lezark; and Mexican actor/singer Diego Boneta.
There was another costume change for Kurkova at the IWC gala, back at the W South Beach, where she wore Chloe again — a black see-through crochet dress. Solange also had changed by then into a stunning yellow pantsuit with a train. Beyonce’s feisty little sister performed for the stylish crowd that included Emily Blunt, Adriana Lima, James Marsden, Jason Alexander, David Arquette and German model Toni Garrn, in a sexy, beaded little number.
Earlier, Garrn (in a tan, kneelength dress) chatted with guests at Miami Beach new hotel The Edition at designer Salvatore Ferragamo’s book release party for W Stories, a huge hardcover by W magazine editor Stefano Tonchi, full of pictures of beautiful people shot by the publication’s photographers.
“I love fairs like Art Basel,” said the New York resident, who is rumored to be cohabiting with boyfriend Leonardo DiCaprio, who was seen Wednesday milling around the Miami Beach Convention Center. “You know you can’t see everything, but you can try. It’s just all consuming.”
The cover girl from coffee table book, Linda Evangelista, showed up looking like she hadn’t aged a day since her 1980s career heyday.
Milling around among the BPs: a serious looking, buttoned-up Joe Jonas, Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Bella Hadid and English heartthrob Douglas Booth. The Romeo & Juliet star is costarring in Ferragamo’s way stylish e-series called A Man’s Story.
“I don’t fancy myself a model,” Booth said, laughing. “But it was fun to get to dress up a little.”