To be exquisitely gorgeous is not the only guarantee of making it onto this list, but it certainly helps! The names of the ladies who did make the list of 'Montreal's Most Beautiful Women' is as diverse as their cultural backgrounds. Intelligence, beauty and grace top the list of the criteria, but other qualities such as elegance, kindness, respect, values, generosity, talent, responsibility, energy and effort are also very important.
Before making my final cut, I had to ask myself, what a really beautiful woman is like, what she represents, what the message she carries and the things she stands for mean to me and to others; is she inspirational, wise, practical, a responsible citizen and does she leave a positive legacy?
I am constantly working, always searching and researching different aspects of daily life, trying to find better and more efficient ways to improve the lives of my clients. I hope, the connections I make with people I encounter through my work enrich me and make me a better person. Every year my list of top 10's is filled with wonderful finds, which I share with everyone looking for the ultimate experience, sharing my tips and know-how. As a personal indulgence, and in the spirit of my celebration of human kind, I now offer you the names of my muses, women who share many things in common but also have characteristics unique to each of them; they inspire my work and my life:
Bernadette Rusgal, quintessential socialite-fashion-icon and art dealer; Ines Linares, a wonderful mother and brilliant business woman; Rizia Moreira, exotic beauty with a smart approach to life and a wonderfully positive outlook; Saskia Roukema, elegance and intelligence, her skin is like porcelain; Denise Benouaich, grace and kindness personified; Dany Rousseleau, energy and a constant willingness to help others; Lauren Cracower, fresh radiance; and Farhat Mirza, a sense of balance and a talent which has made her one of the best make-up artists in the city. These women are not only strikingly beautiful, they are admired and loved and appreciated by many, including me. Their strong presence and attitude, together with their natural sense of individuality and style, have earned them my absolute respect; I am, unabashedly, a fan of each and every one of them.
Several years ago, many articles published about me and my work started by saying “the Venezuelan born interior designer” and went on to relate something I did or created. It bothered me to see that I had to be labelled something other than simply talented, to be interesting. Then I realized that, it was true, my cultural background and childhood in Venezuela have influenced my work and given me a clear advantage over other designers. You see, Venezuelans are obsessed with beauty, color and nature, and Venezuela's gorgeous women are perfect examples of these characteristics. No surprise then that beautiful women also inspire me!
Venezuelan women held political positions even before women in many other countries had any rights. In Venezuela a woman is respected and is considered a national treasure. For some, it is as important to be the next Miss Venezuela as it is to be a brain surgeon and winning the contest could lead to becoming one of the most powerful figures in Latin America.
And don’t be fooled by the sequins and the sparkle of a crown; the winner usually has an University degree, speaks several languages, is ambitious, well travelled, has a body-to-kill-for and a statuesque presence that can’t be ignored, all with an attitude to match.
I salute you women of Montreal, all truly beautiful! As well as the women who made my list, you also inspire me everyday to go the extra mile and be the best at what I do. • Eros Greatti is Canada’s Top Interior Designer® 2006 and 2007. For more information or to suggest topics, he can be reached at The New Maison Eros Greatti & M Interior Design Studio & Atelier at 514-839-2565