Alessandra Ambrosio, TV Star? The Supermodel’s Big New Move – Vogue.com
No one would blame Alessandra Ambrosio for taking a break. After nearly two decades at the top of the industry, she has achieved the rarest of modeling milestones—longevity. At this stage in her career, and as one of the world’s most recognizable catwalkers, Ambrosio could be resting very comfortably on her laurels, but instead she’s pushing into fresh territory. This year has marked both an agency switch—Ambrosio joined the supermodel brigade at IMG Models—and a brand-new role as a correspondent for NBC during the upcoming Olympics. Even when you’ve got millions following you on social media, stepping in front of the camera for a global television audience presents a unique challenge, but Ambrosio is ready to rise to the occasion. “I have been working in the modeling industry for almost 20 years, and have done so much, but there is always more I can do and learn,” says Ambrosio. “[Right now] I am most excited about new experiences.”
Slated to join Ryan Seacrest for on-air segments throughout the course of the games, the Brazilian-born Ambrosio aims to provide an insider’s perspective on the country. “I can’t give much away,” she says of the coverage, “but we will be doing fun segments around Rio, exploring Brazilian culture.” Originally from Erechim, in Rio Grande do Sul, Ambrosio has never lost touch with her roots, and seeing the Olympics take place in her home is special. “I could not be more proud to have people focusing their energy on Rio and Brazil,” says Ambrosio. “I try to spend as much time as possible [there], as I love the energy of the Brazilian people, the amazing food, and the stunning beaches. I hope that through NBC’s coverage, as well as my social media, I will be able to share some of that energy with everyone.”
But that’s not all: When it comes to sports, Ambrosio knows her stuff. The supermodel has always enjoyed watching the games, and along with the chance of some face time with a few of her athletic heroes, she’s looking forward to having a bird’s-eye view of the competitions. “Being Brazilian, I think you can guess what is my favorite sport,” says Ambrosio. (It’s soccer.) “I will definitely be cheering on Brazilian soccer, but will also try to make it to the beach volleyball matches, gymnastics, and swimming.” And while maintaining Victoria’s Secret Angel status for as long as she has is no small feat, it’s the success of volleyball pro and mother of three Kerri Walsh Jennings that has especially struck a chord with Ambrosio. “I think she has accomplished so much, by winning three golds, being a mother, and going to the Olympics for the fifth time as a top contender. It’s just so impressive.”
Now that Ambrosio is set to provide a window into Brazilian culture and nightlife in addition to her current roles, she has never been busier. She has plenty of tips for those hitting up Rio for the games—though you’ll have to stay tuned to get the full scoop. Still, her best advice doesn’t require a video update, just quality time spent with Rio’s residents. “What I would recommend is to make friends with some of the locals and create lasting relationships,” says Ambrosio. “Brazil’s best assets are its people.” No kidding.