CULTURE

Billion-Dollar Babes

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Photographer: Lynsey Addario

Provenance: Australia Ages: Katherine, 29 (left); Alexandra, 25 Home base: The sisters have places in Sydney and New York’s SoHo. Daddy: Down Under’s former prime minister Paul Keating Social cred: Trip to Cannes last May; Boom Boom Room membership; Sydney red-carpet appearances galore Claim to fame: The duo were André Balazs’s escorts to the Standard’s Halloween party last October. Dressed in elaborate custom-made Black Swan–inspired regalia, they silently followed the hotelier around the 18th floor while Marion Cotillard and Liv Tyler admired their feathers. Secret weapon: Brains. Katherine’s political consulting firm has advised business tycoons; Alexandra was CEO of GoFundraise, an online charity venture, until 2008.

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Photographer: Lynsey Addario

Provenance: Russia Age: 32 Home base: Four-story mansion in suburban Moscow; a newly purchased Paris apartment Sugar daddy: Reportedly, Andrei Kostin, president of VTB Bank and one of Russia’s most powerful (and married) tycoons Social cred: Face-time with fellow Moscow denizen Naomi Campbell; landed the cover of Russia’s Dolce magazine Claims to fame: Was a majority owner of Russian label Alena Akhmadullina until personality conflicts got in the way; bought Alexander Terekhov (Russia’s moody answer to Alexander Wang) soon after cashing in her stake Secret weapon: A new cropped coif to counteract years of sexy photo shoots and over-revealing Roberto Cavalli frocks

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Photographer: Lynsey Addario

Provenance: Uzbekistan Age: 38 Home base: Posh abodes in Tashkent and Geneva Daddy: Islom Karimov, Uzbeki president since 1990 Alma maters: Master’s degree from Harvard; degrees from four Tashkent universities; a jewelry certificate from the Fashion Institute of Technology Social cred: Regular seat at Chopard’s table at the amfAR Cannes gala; hobnobs with Christian Lacroix and Sting; honorary title of permanent Uzbeki representative to the UN—just for kicks Claims to fame: Founded Tashkent’s Art Week Style.Uz in 2006; designed a capsule collection for Chopard Secret weapon: Musicality. In 2007 she released a single and a million-dollar video costarring a flying car.

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Photographer: Lynsey Addario

Provenance: Thailand Age: 24 Home base: Grand Palace in Bangkok Daddy: Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn Social cred: Front row and center at Chanel, Dior, Elie Saab, and Givenchy shows Claim to fame: Balmain CEO Alain Hivelin invited the royal to show her namesake clothing line in Paris during the spring 2008 season; a loyal Balmain client, she chose Opéra Garnier as her venue. Secret weapon: Fierce, unforgiving badminton game. She was good enough to exhibit her dominant returns at the Southeast Asian Games in 2005.