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published time By Liveinstyle published time 23 Dec, 2013 Share image 0 Shares

It’s ‘Ee’rina, not ‘Eye’rina, her manager informs us gently, before we sit down to shoot the breeze with Signature International Fashion Weekend 2013’s sexy showstopper. But really, what’s in a name? With a to-die-for figure, sparkling green peepers and a string of titles from ‘Best International Model’ (2010) to ‘Sexiest Woman in the World’ (2011), this stunner is no small fry. We’re not even mentioning her multitude of magazine covers (for Vogue, GQ, Elle, Harper’s Bazaar et al) across the world, and we’re already breathless.

Should you ever be lucky enough to run into this leggy lass, bask in her supermodel halo and prepare to be bombarded with dimpled exuberance. The LIVEINSTYLE.COM team met Irina at Taj Lands End in Mumbai, the morning she flew in from Madrid, via Dubai. Her fleeting mention of Madrid is the closest she gets to mentioning her ‘Real’ footballer boyfriend Cristiano Ronaldo, but we pay heed to her preferences and let the subject pass.

While she was charming our crew and leaving the boys speechless, here’s what LIVEINSTYLE.COM learned about La sensational Shayk…

She wasn’t always a hottie (we don’t know exactly why that is so difficult to believe, but it may have something to do with those va-va-voom curves)…

“In high school, I was really tall and skinny and the boys weren’t interested in me. On top of that, I loved wearing these high-heeled boots! They were expensive and my family couldn’t really afford them, so I worked hard to earn them. I wasn’t very popular back then.”

Her journey to supermodel stardom is the stuff of serendipity…

“I grew up in a small village in Russia, where we had absolutely no connection with fashion. I was interested in music and was training to be a pianist. When I was spotted by a model co-ordinator in the city, it was a complete surprise for me!”

She’s an Indophile…

“I am so excited with the buzz of this country; even just from the airport to the hotel. I am really looking forward to seeing more of Mumbai. And, of course, it has been a long-time dream to visit the Taj Mahal in India.”

She is a water baby (and we don’t just mean professionally)…

“Because I’ve grown up in cold and snowy Russia, I can really appreciate water. In fact, even the heat here (in Mumbai) feels great. My favourite holiday would always be at a beach somewhere.”

Away from the cameras, she likes it casual and classy…

“When I’m not working, you’ll find me dressed simply.” (For our interview, she has turned up in a chic black jumpsuit with black stilettos and a designer handbag.) “If I can advise women on the one piece they should have in their wardrobe, it’s a black dress.”

Her mother is a huge Bollywood fan!

“For the life of me, I can’t remember the name of any one film, but I remember my mum being super-excited about watching Hindi films. Now, I love the element of song and dance, and how in the middle of a serious scene, everyone starts shaking their hips to this really catchy number! I think it’s so much fun. And your actresses are so beautiful. I think Aishwarya Rai (Bachchan) is gorgeous!”

She is set to blaze the silver screen

“If anyone offers me a Bollywood film, I’m game. I just finished shooting for Brett Ratner’s ‘Hercules’ in Hollywood (where she plays Hercules’ wife Megara, alongside Dwayne Johnson, Ian McShane and Joseph Fiennes). I loved being on the set and enjoyed learning about the process of filmmaking. I can’t wait for more!”

She’s all for being au naturel

“I work out every single day, but I’m hardly finicky about what I eat. You should have seen me at the breakfast buffet this morning! My advice to anyone who wants to keep glowing is to hydrate… and yes, I’m a big fan of coconut oil. I drink a spoonful every day!”

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