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Paris Hilton - Biography

The hotel heiress turned cultural icon was born on February 17 1981

Paris Hilton looking glamorous at the 2023 Grammy Awards
Orin Carlin
Content Writer
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Paris Hilton's early life 

Paris Hilton was born in New York on February 17 1981. She is the great granddaughter of legendary hotelier Conrad Hilton, founder of the Hilton hotel empire, making her the closest thing America has to royalty. And with homes in Manhattan's Waldorf-Astoria, Beverly Hills and the Hamptons, the blonde bombshell is certainly not afraid to make use of her considerable wealth. 

Paris Hilton's career 

Contrary to the charge she is famous only for being famous, Paris is multi-faceted and is constantly adding new strings to her bow. Having made her mark as a catwalk model, she has also turned her hand to writing and jewellery design as well as perfume creation. She has even trademarked her famous quip: "That's hot!"  Underneath the ditsy facade lies a determined businesswoman. "I thought it was cute to play a dumb blonde," she explained in 2005. "On TV, I do it because it's funny. I consider myself a businesswoman and a brand." 

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It was TV that transformed her from a ubiquitous socialite to a bona fide star. Reality show The Simple Life, in which she and fellow It-girl Nicole Richie traded A-list parties for slopping out pigs and milking cows on a farm, was a huge hit. Indeed American viewers were so gripped by Paris' efforts to prove she didn't mind getting her Jimmy Choos dirty, that several series followed. The growing fascination with her adventures was confirmed when, in a head-to-head ratings battle, the show beat a live interview with President Bush. A steady stream of seductive photoshoots in publications like Maxim and FHM have also helped buoy her celebrity, while cameo appearances in such films as Zoolander and Raising Helen have likewise played their part. 

Paris Hilton's personal life 

An explicit home video of a weekend she spent in the Beverly Hills Hotel with former lover Rick Salomon spawned three law suits and a frenzy of media attention in the first half of 2004. In addition to Rick, she has also dated Backstreet Boys singer Nick Carter and been linked to actors Leonardo DiCaprio and Edward Furlong, as well as boxing champ Oscar de la Hoya. Then, in May 2005, after a courtship of just five months, shipping heir Paris Latsis popped the question. The engagement was short-lived, however, with Paris calling off the wedding after five months. "I feel I'm just not ready for marriage," she explained. "I have seen the break-ups between people who love each other and rush into getting married too quickly. I don't want to make that mistake." 

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Since the split, Paris has experienced various called-off engagements and relationships. The media star married businessman in November 2021 and in January 2023, the pair welcomed their first child Phoenix Barron Hilton Reum, born via surrogacy.

In March 2023, Paris: The Memoir was released, and it made The New York Times' bestseller list. The candid book delved deep into Paris' personal life, detailing alleged abuse that took place when she attended boarding school.

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