"I love photo sessions," statuesque model Eva Herzigova once admitted. "I'm alone. I'm the queen. Everyone's taking care of me." Can you blame them for spoiling her? The nearly-six-foot blonde speaks four languages, is famously nice to everyone and, lest you forget, lent her curvaceous form to the Wonderbra ads.
Eva Herzigova was born on March 10, 1973, in Litvinov in the Czech Republic. The daughter of Jiri, an electrician, and secretary Eva she grew up in a picturesque mountain village far from the fashion capitals of the world. As a child she excelled at gymnastics, basketball, track and cross-country skiing, though she was less successful with boys. Her super-slim frame "until I was 16 I was flat," she says earned her the nickname "the cigarette".
Eva soon blossomed, however. Nevertheless, despite her obvious charms she always felt her sister Lenka would be the model. But on a visit to Prague when she was 16 Eva ran into a friend who told her about an upcoming modelling contest sponsored by Metropolitan Models. Eva entered the competition, won, and six months later found herself with a one-way train ticket to Paris and a lucrative modelling contract.
She quickly edged into the elite world of single-name beauties through a wildly popular 1992 Guess? Campaign, and later the infamous "Hello Boys" ad for Wonderbra. She has since graced the cover of all the major fashion bibles and was even dubbed the Marilyn of the Nineties. Then, a decade after her modelling debut, she suprised the world of style by shedding her curves in favour of a new, ultra-slimline silhouette.
Like many veteran supermodels, Eva hopes to make the transition to acting. "I'm sick of people seeing me as a walking bust, and I want to do away with all those pre-conceived ideas," she says. In 1995 she made her film debut in Jean-Marie Poire's Les Anges Gardiens opposite Gerard Depardieu, and has since starred in a handful of films. "You can't be a model at 60, but you certainly can be an actress," says the beauty.
While that may be true, one doubts Eva will need to be working at 60 at last count she was worth upwards of £20 million. It seems she's been an over-achiever since birth, however. "I'm very ambitious," she says. "When I was younger I was always the best at the thing I liked doing, and I still always want to do more, be better. I just keep raising that bar."
Unfortunately her busy schedule doesn't lend itself to a stable love life. In 1996 she wed Bon Jovi drummer Tico Torres at a seaside New Jersey wedding in a glamorous John Galliano wedding gown. "I always dreamed of looking like a princess on my wedding day and I think my dream came true," she said. But less than two years later the pair called it quits. Since then she's stepped out with record executive and former Gwyneth Paltrow-flame Guy Oseary, as well as male model Kelly Rippy.
Things took a turn for the better in 2001 when she met Italian entrepreneur Gregorio Marsiaj after her plane back to New York was grounded in Italy. The pair have been in a relationship since then and became proud parents to a boy, George, on June 1, 2007.