Penélope Cruz

At 47, Penélope Cruz Proves You’re Never Too Old For A Princess Dress

At 47, Penélope Cruz Proves You’re Never Too Old For A Princess Dress

Penélope Cruz in her dreamy couture paired, of course, with Chanel fine jewellery. Photo: Shutterstock
Penélope Cruz’s love affair with Chanel is well documented, but the Spanish actor seems to have fallen particularly hard for the brand’s couture. While on the promo trail for Parallel Mothers, the latest wildly emotional export from her partnership with Pedro Almodóvar, she has frequently been dipping into the spring/summer 2021 collection. Proving that wearing new-season looks is not always essential, even when you’re a house ambassador, Cruz has been a vision of double C-ed tulle, polka dots and posies.
The star’s complete red carpet look. Photo: Shutterstock
Who can blame her? The haute edit, dedicated to the familial bonds at the heart of a couture maison, treated each look as if it was wedding guest attire and the show itself was a celebration of love. For her turn on the Goya Awards red carpet, Cruz selected a pearlescent lilac ballgown as sweet as the sugared almonds served as favors. Embroidered with micro beads which shone in the spotlight, the archetypal prom dress silhouette evoked nostalgia while still looking fresh.
Romance was in the air at the Goya Awards, as Javier and Penélope posed for the cameras. Photo: Shutterstock

Standing alongside her husband Javier Bardem, the picture-perfect double act were not the real romance of the night (in our books). Watching Penélope hug – really hug – fellow actor Cate Blanchett, who glittered in gun-metal tasseled Armani Privé, was proof that you are never too old to wear a princess dress. It’s what fashion fairytales are made of.
Blanchett, 52, and Cruz, 47, embracing in couture. Photo: Shutterstock
Originally published in Vogue.co.uk

#BuyArabDesigners: Penelopé Cruz Wears Iconic Middle Eastern Labels for Vogue Arabia

#BuyArabDesigners: Penelopé Cruz Wears Iconic Middle Eastern Labels for Vogue Arabia

Dress, Elie Saab; gloves, earrings, Ashi Studio. Photographed by Luigi and Iango for Vogue Arabia November 2021
For Penélope Cruz, Vogue Arabia’s November 2021 issue not only marks her first time fronting the Middle Eastern magazine, but also her debut in creations by iconic Arab designers. Starring on our cover, which celebrates maximalist style and remarkable talents from the region, it was only fitting that Cruz paid homage to the region in her own special way. In the bigger picture, having the Oscar-winner championing local talent also forms part of Vogue Arabia’s long-standing #BuyArabDesigners campaign, which supports emerging and established artists close to home.
For our November 2021 cover spread, Cruz was shot in the far-flung destination of Madrid—which also happens to be her home—by photography duo Luigi and Iango. Tying her shoot to the Arab world sartorially were stunning pieces by couturiers Elie Saab and Ashi Studio. Over the decades, Beirut-based Saab and Saudi-born Ashi have adorned many a star, with Cruz now joining the gilded list.
Dress, gloves, Ashi Studio. Photographed by Luigi and Iango for Vogue Arabia November 2021
Out of the many looks handpicked by stylist Amine Jreissati, the Parallel Mothers actor was featured on our pages wearing two different ensembles by the Middle Eastern designers. The first, a poncho-style dress with party season-appropriate beaded fringes from Elie Saab’s Cruise 2022 collection. This particular look was complemented with elbow-length gloves by Ashi Studio, as well as earrings from the latter’s recently launched jewelry collection. The second—and arguably boldest look from the spread—was also by Beirut-based Ashi Studio: a long ebony dress featuring a fully beaded bustier with silk organza fringes.
Read Next: The Arab World’s Biggest Celebrities All Want to #BuyArabDesigners
Style: Amine JreissatiHair: LuigiMakeup: Pablo IglesiasNails: Lucero HurtadoPhotography assistants: Daniel Gallar Candela, Luca, Jessica Rodriguez LigeroHair assistant: Stephane BeaverStyle assistant: Esther FiolDigital tech: David GarciaCreative production: Laura PriorProduction: Alana Production

Penélope Cruz: “I Don’t Think of Myself as a Role Model for Anyone Other Than My Children”

Penélope Cruz: “I Don’t Think of Myself as a Role Model for Anyone Other Than My Children”

As she sets foot in Dubai this month, Penélope Cruz opens up about her loves and life’s work.
Penélope Cruz wears accessories by Chanel. Photographed by Luigi and Iango for Vogue Arabia November 2021
It is hard to believe that for an actor who has earned an Oscar, a Bafta, multiple Goyas, and a César, among many other awards, winning a prize still makes a big impact. However, for Penélope Cruz, emotions took over when she received the call that revealed that her performance in Parallel Mothers, Pedro Almodóvar’s latest movie, was to be awarded the Volpi Cup for best actress at the 2021 edition of the prestigious Venice film festival. “I was shocked when I was contacted by Pedro’s team, informing me that I was the best actress in Venice this year. I couldn’t believe it and I started to cry,” she confides. “My daughter was with me and said, ‘Mom, why are you crying if you are getting a prize?’ I had to explain to her what this award meant to me. I love this festival; it’s so significant, and I attended it for the first time 30 years ago. To win with a movie by Pedro’s side was an incredible dream.”
With her Volpi Cup for for best actress at this year’s Venice film festival. Photo: Getty
The partnership between Cruz and Almodóvar is one of the most celebrated in cinema history. Cruz, from Madrid, was a young but already known actor in Spain, when she teamed up for the first time with the iconic director in 1997. Live Flesh was the first of eight movies they’ve since done together, all incredible successes, such as All About My Mother (1999), Volver (2006), and Broken Embraces (2009). In Parallel Mothers, their latest venture, Cruz delivers one of her best performances to date, in the role of Janis, a pregnant photographer who meets another mother-to-be in a maternity ward–a less prosperous teenager–with whom she becomes close. The acting is raw and powerful, and shows Cruz in a completely new light, as noted by the stellar reviews so far. “I feel grateful with all the characters Pedro gave me, as they allow me to do things I’ve never done before–this happens over and over again,” she says. “We’ve worked together eight times and it’s always a big and complex challenge. Janis was the most difficult character of them all, as so many difficult things happened in her life, almost like climbing a mountain every day. I loved every second of it and my end goal was not to disappoint Pedro and his trust, making sure he was happy. Just going through this experience and learning by Pedro’s side was already an award itself, so winning on top of it was more than I could dream of.”
Pedro Almodóvar and Penélope Cruz at this year’s New York Film Festival. Photo: Getty
When asked to select her favorite Almodóvar movie, Cruz cannot choose. However, she reinforces that he is her “main teacher,” and although they consider each other “family,” the relationship on and off the movie set is quite unique. “We have a close relationship, but we separate things. If you see us having dinner, the tone is completely different from when we are on a set. Even without planning, there’s some sort of distance. I think we created this to protect our work and relationship. But at the same time, it’s a distance full of trust, and full of love and respect for each other.”
Cruz wears jacket, top, pants, accessories, shoes, Chanel. Photographed by Luigi and Iango for Vogue Arabia November 2021
We are now in a photography studio in the center of Madrid, not to meet Penélope Cruz the actor, but Penélope Cruz the fashion muse. The Spanish star is coming to Dubai for the third time this November, this instance to attend a replica of Chanel’s Cruise show, making it the perfect opportunity to grace Vogue Arabia’s cover. At the age of 47, Cruz is petite and impressively beautiful, moving with full ease in front of the cameras of Luigi and Iango, wearing Chanel and a few looks from regional brands to pay a thoughtful homage to the Arab world. When we sit to chat, she tells me how she became an ambassador of Chanel, a journey that started decades ago. “The first time I went to a show for Chanel was in 1999. Then, years later, I was told that Karl Lagerfeld wanted to see me in Cannes, so I went for dinner with him and Virginie [Viard]. During the meal they started speaking in French about offering me a campaign. I pretended I didn’t understand, but I got it,” she laughs. “The next day, they called me to confirm.” It was after a first campaign for the 2018/2019 Cruise collection that Cruz was appointed ambassador of the brand, becoming extremely close to Lagerfeld. The actor reveals that they loved to talk to each other, and had hours-long discussions about everything, not only fashion. “I feel I was always connected to the brand, as I’m Chanel’s biggest fan. Ever since I was a little girl, I always dreamed of wearing their clothes.” This dream became reality, with Cruz delivering spectacular Chanel fashion moments at the Oscars in 2008 and 2020, at the 2019 Met Gala, and at the 2018 opening night of the Cannes Film Festival. “I’ve had all these magical moments with Chanel being part of my life, with dresses that were created for me, always so one-of-a-kind,” she reflects. “I even remember sketches that I have from Karl, for a dress he made for me for the Oscars, or the dress that I wore at this year’s Venice Film Festival, designed by Virginie two years ago, but that we felt was so special, we wanted to wait for the right opportunity for me to wear it.”
Cruz wears jacket, top, pants, accessories, Chanel. Photographed by Luigi and Iango for Vogue Arabia November 2021
Another moment of major importance but reflecting a less happy moment in the brand’s history, was when Cruz walked the runway for FW19 ready-to-wear, a collection designed by Karl Lagerfeld, but showcased after the passing of the creative director. “It was really difficult not to cry while walking. I remember the runway was very long, and that feeling that I had to make it until the end…” she confides. “After I finished, I saw Marion Cotillard in the hallway behind, and we just hugged each other and burst into tears. There were so many people there that loved him and worked with him for 40 years. It was magical, and it felt like time had stopped.”
Walking the Chanel FW18 runway. Photo: Getty
Although the bond between Cruz and Lagerfeld was so strong, the actor could not be more satisfied with his replacement, Virginie Viard, who had worked with the German designer since 1987. “I think she is the best possible person to continue the legacy of the brand, and to continue Karl’s work. They spent more than two decades together, and she completely understands the essence of Chanel, while adding her own personal touch,” Cruz notes. “She is very rock’n’roll, and very modern. She is also practical, cool, and elegant, and thinks of what women want to wear. On a personal level, I also love that she is a real family person, always so amazing with my kids, and very straight-forward. She is a no-nonsense type of woman.”
As 6pm approaches, Cruz informs us that she needs to leave the studio on time, as she wants to pick up her children from school. After living in Los Angeles, London, and New York, the actor is now fully based in Madrid, where she resides with her two children, 10-year-old Leo and eight-year-old Luna, and her husband, actor Javier Bardem.
Cruz with her husband Javier Bardem at the 2018 Cannes film festival. Photo: Getty
The pair met on the set of the 1992 film Jamón Jamón and also starred together in Vicky Cristina Barcelona (2008), the Woody Allen movie that earned her an Oscar. Having her life based around her family in Madrid means Cruz can also be close to her mother and sister, in a “good place to raise children.” When I ask how Spain’s cinematic royal couple maintains a certain normality at home, far from the glamour of premieres and the red carpet, the actor reveals that her secret is a clear separation between work and personal time. “I don’t take the characters home. Imagine a role like Janis, who made me cry on set for 12 hours straight, for so many weeks… I try to jump in and out of fiction as many times as possible in one day, but when I go home, I’m there a hundred percent for my family,” she shares. “I also don’t shoot all the time. I work on a movie for maybe a couple of months, and then I have a lot of time until I’m doing the next one. And I do maybe one or two movies per year. I also avoid doing movies away from home if it’s not in the summer. If it’s winter, I just do it in Madrid. My focus is being a mother, so I’m blessed I can work while keeping my family the priority.”
Cruz wears jacket, top, pants, accessories, shoes, Chanel. Photographed by Luigi and Iango for Vogue Arabia November 2021
As a family woman and actor, one of the things that concerns Cruz and that she is vocal about is the negative impact of social media on everyone’s lives. And she seems serious when she tells me that she “wished that we stayed in the Nineties, when there was a great equilibrium between technology, pen and paper, and a timing that was more logical for the human brain.” She continues, “I just use social media for my work or for charity, I do not use it for other reasons, it just doesn’t go with me. I feel it’s crazy what is happening in the world regarding children and teenagers using social media. To me, this is big and it’s urgent to be looked at and regulated. It all starts at home, with what each family allows, but it’s difficult to manage if the regulations are not in place. It becomes normal to see a 12-year-old using social media. It’s not normal and it’s not OK. It’s not right for the development of any child. In my house, there is none of that for sure. I am strict and careful, but I don’t see the same when I look around.”
Cruz wears top, pants, accessories, Chanel. Photographed by Luigi and Iango for Vogue Arabia November 2021
Before Cruz bids adios to the studio, I ask her if she feels the weight of being a role model for so many girls who dream of her success and want to be like her. Not only is she Spain’s most international actor, with a vast portfolio that includes comedy, action, and more intellectual movies, but she will also always be the first woman from her country to have won an acting Oscar, from three nominations (Bardem was the first actor, winning in the best supporting category for No Country for Old Men in 2007). She is also the face of Chanel, and one half of her country’s most acclaimed power couple. “When a young girl stops me on the street, I always say I’m no one to give advice, as I’m not very good at that. But if it’s a teenager who dreams of acting, I always tell them to prepare. Study, work on your craft, and have a plan B, just in case you don’t succeed, exactly like I did. And never do drugs,” Cruz concludes. “I don’t think of myself as a role model for anyone other than my children, as they see me every day, and the actions of their mother and father are the most important to them. This is a huge responsibility, and my biggest mission in life is to try to do that well.”
Read Next: “Coming to Dubai is a powerful achievement,” Chanel’s President of Fashion on the Cruise Show
Originally published in the November 2021 issue of Vogue Arabia
Style: Amine JreissatiHair: LuigiMakeup: Pablo IglesiasNails: Lucero HurtadoPhotography assistants: Daniel Gallar Candela, Luca, Jessica Rodriguez LigeroHair assistant: Stephane BeaverStyle assistant: Esther FiolDigital tech: David GarciaCreative production: Laura PriorProduction: Alana Production

Editor’s Letter: Celebrating the Return of Fashion in the Middle East

Editor’s Letter: Celebrating the Return of Fashion in the Middle East

Vogue Arabia editor-in-chief Manuel Arnaut. Photo: Ziga Mihelcic
Fashion is back! If you have any doubts about it, I invite you to check Arabia’s latest fashion calendar: in October alone, Giorgio Armani showcased a runway show at the Burj Khalifa, and Cartier inaugurated the meaningful Women’s Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai. This month, Chanel presents its Cruise show in Dubai, and in Qatar, Fashion Trust Arabia is hosting a lavish three-day event in Doha that includes the opening of a major Dior exhibition in the city. Of course, you can read all about it in the magazine, while having access to all the festivities live via Vogue.me and our social media platforms.
The current events, and the general spirit of celebration of fashion in the region, inspired us to curate this issue with a maximalist and flamboyant approach, bursting with dresses, jewelry, and beauty that make you dream, and put you in that right mood to live life to the fullest. Also with plenty of reasons to celebrate, Oscar winner Penélope Cruz, who recently took home the best actress award at the Venice film festival, shines in our cover.
Cruz wears Chanel. Photographed by Luigi and Iango for Vogue Arabia November 2021
The Spanish actor will be in town for the Chanel Cruise show, so this was the perfect opportunity to catch up with the cinema icon. We met in Madrid for a photo shoot conducted by Luigi and Iango, and we had an interesting conversation about her career, her long-time collaboration with director Pedro Almodóvar, and the impact of social media on our lives–something Cruz has strong opinions about, as you can read in this month’s issue.
Another woman I’m proud to feature this month is Andrée Acouri, who looks glorious at 80 years young. Acouri was the first ever Arab top model and had a brilliant career walking for prestigious maisons such as Dior, Chanel, and Saint Laurent. After opening a modeling agency in Beirut, she mentored the young Georgina Rizk, who, under her wing, became the region’s first Miss Universe in 1971. Before I leave you with all these exciting stories, I would like to announce that Vogue’s Ball of Arabia will be back in December, this year in celebration of the Golden Jubilee of the UAE. I can’t give more details for now, but I can tell you that it’s something you will not want to miss.
Read Next: Penélope Cruz Stars on Vogue Arabia’s November Cover Ahead of Her Visit to Dubai
Originally published in the November 2021 issue of Vogue Arabia

Get Ready—Chanel Brings its Cruise 2021 Collection to Dubai

Get Ready—Chanel Brings its Cruise 2021 Collection to Dubai

Chanel Cruise 2021
On November 2, Chanel marks its first international event post-pandemic in Dubai, showcasing its Chanel Cruise 2021 collection by Virginie Viard to some 1,000 guests. Five years ago, the French luxury house arrived in the region for the first time with its Resort show, Paris-Dubai. “It’s one of my favorite memories,” shares Bruno Pavlovsky, president of fashion at Chanel. At the time, Chanel was still speaking to an audience of tourists in the region. “Now, it’s people from the area,” he says. However, he doesn’t want to “just” sell accessories.
“The DNA of the brand must be visible. Chanel is about fashion; it’s about ready-to-wear,” he states. Coming to Dubai was a “huge opportunity,” marking the first time the collection was seen live. When it debuted in May, it was witnessed digitally. “Everything is happening at the right moment,” says Pavlovsky. As for what Mademoiselle’s impressions would be of the emirate, he smiles, “She would have had a lot of friends; she would have learned a lot about the culture, and she would have created something extraordinary.” 
Can’t wait to check out Chanel’s Cruise 2021 collection? Catch the best moments from the showcase on Vogue Arabia’s Instagram page on November 2, 2021.
Read Next: Penélope Cruz Stars on Vogue Arabia’s November Cover Ahead of Her Visit to Dubai

Penélope Cruz Stars on Vogue Arabia’s November Cover Ahead of Her Visit to Dubai

Penélope Cruz Stars on Vogue Arabia’s November Cover Ahead of Her Visit to Dubai

Penélope Cruz photographed by Luigi and Iango for Vogue Arabia November 2021
The November issue of Vogue Arabia celebrates the return of dramatic romance and opulent beauty, as exemplified by Oscar winner Penélope Cruz, shot in Madrid for the cover. This month, the actor will be visiting Dubai for the third time, as part of Chanel’s Cruise show, to be staged in the emirate on November 2.
In her conversation with editor-in-chief Manuel Arnaut, Cruz opens up about her close relationship with director Pedro Almodóvar, with whom she has made eight films. For their latest work, Parallel Mothers, Cruz was awarded best actress at this year’s Venice film festival. “I feel very grateful for all the characters Pedro gave me, as they allow me to do things I’ve never done before. We’ve worked together eight times and it’s always a big and complex challenge,” she shares. Her focus, though, is being a mother to her two children with fellow actor Javier Bardem, with the couple living full-time in Madrid. “My priority is being a mother, so I’m blessed I can work while keeping my family the priority,” she says. “I don’t think of myself as a role model for anyone other than my children, as they see me every day, and the actions of their mother and father are the most important to them. This is a huge responsibility, and my biggest mission in life is to try to do that well.”
Cruz also discusses another central relationship in her professional life – that with the house of Chanel, and its creative directors, the late Karl Lagerfeld and Virginie Viard. The actor has been an ambassador of Chanel since joining its Cruise 2018/2019 campaign. “I feel I was always connected to the brand, as I’m really Chanel’s biggest fan. Even since I was a little girl, I always dreamed of wearing their clothes,” she says. She had a close relationship with Lagerfeld, with the two talking about more than just fashion. His death in February 2019 hit her hard, yet she walked the runway at the FW19 show, right after his passing. “It was really difficult not to cry while walking. I remember the runway was very long, and that feeling that I had to make it until the end,” she confides. “After I finished, I saw Marion Cotillard in the hallway behind, and we just hugged each other and burst into tears. There were so many people there that loved him and worked with him for 40 years. It was really magical, and it felt like time had stopped.”
The November issue is a toast to remarkable women from the region and beyond and shines a light on the important work they are doing and art they are creating. There’s Iranian artist and director Shirin Neshat in conversation with Isabella Rossellini about their new film, Land of Dreams, talking about the power of women creating interesting, dynamic work together. “I wondered all my life if there is a woman’s sensitivity to art, and if a filmmaker, who is a woman, would bring a different point of view,” Rossellini says in their heart-to-heart. We also travel to Rabat to meet the mother and daughter team behind Atelier Houria Tazi, which has been creating exquisite homeware for four decades, and speak to the world’s first Arab supermodel, Lebanese Andrée Acouri, who walked the runways for Yves Saint Laurent, Christian Dior, and Chanel. And in two further world exclusives, we reveal the Christian Dior exhibition opening in Doha this month and publish the moving new foreword from Her Imperial Majesty Empress Farah Diba Pahlavi’s memoirs.
Jacket, top, pants, accessories, shoes, Chanel. Photographed by Luigi and Iango for Vogue Arabia November 2021
Lush romance in fashion and beauty is also celebrated with shoots showcasing the evocative new-season looks and silhouettes, from modern lace to XXL puffers. The issue also dives into the latest beauty trends, from groundbreaking ingredients and formulas to the latest makeup and perfume releases. The November issue also features the Vogue Arabia Living supplement, with the world’s most beautiful homes, trends, and designers, and an invitation to HH Sheikha Fatima Bint Hazza Bin Zayed Al Nahyan English countryside manor.
Read Next: Penélope Cruz on Finding a Family in Chanel and Representing Real Women on Screen

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