Summer has hit New York City and with it, a brand new season of The Real Housewives of NYC — complete with a fresh, new cast and all kinds of new, juicy drama. After the meltdown of Season 13, creators decided it was time for a change — especially given the location.
“This is the most multicultural, diverse, and energetic and exciting city in America,” longtime executive producer Andy Cohen tells Variety. For the new season, the goal became to find a “multicultural group of friends who really best reflect the most exciting city in the country. We’re looking for a group of women who are real friends, and who are of diverse backgrounds, races and religions.” Tune in on July 16 to see if they succeeded, and, for now, read on to meet the newest ladies-who-lunch of NYC.
Sai De Silva
Before landing on Bravo’s hottest franchise, Brooklynite and content creator Sai De Silva made a name for herself as a fashion and lifestyle blogger, catching the eye of Dior, Fendi, Vogue and other brand partners. Now, she’s equally busy, as mom of two and married to David, a stay-at-home dad who runs the household while De Silva continues to grow her digital empire.
Season 14 dives past her polished exterior to reveal real-life vulnerabilities and how she deals with life’s unexpected curveballs, but when it comes to joining the show, she takes things in stride. “We’re not trying to replace these amazing women that were here before us,” Sai tells OK!. “You’re going to get that humor, you’re going to get that fun. A little bit of tension, some banter, but you’re going to get some great friendships…we all have different personalities which kind of makes it work.”
Somalian model, philanthropist and entrepreneur, Ubah Hassan first made headlines when her hot sauce company, UBAHHOT, landed on “Oprah’s Favorite Things.” Spotted by a talent scout as a young girl growing up in Canada, she’s since worked with some of the fashion industry’s biggest names — but she’s proved to be much more than just a pretty face.
With her sights set on making it big in the Big Apple, this season will follow Hassan as she strives to grow her business on her own terms without the help of a husband or outside investors. “Every time I heard someone say, ‘It can’t be done,’ I sat down and figured out a way to get it done,” Ubah says to Bravo. “Often, that meant doing it myself — making boxes, packing jars, affixing labels. I’ve done it all.” The final test? New York City-level success.
Born and bred in Manhattan as one of five kids, Erin Lichy has been hustling since day one. At just 19 years old, she became a licensed real estate agent and has since worked to build a formidable rep within the industry, known for her “die-hard work ethic” as well as her keen eye and ability to spot the next hot trend before anyone else does. Lichy also runs Homegirl, her own renovation and interior design firm. And if all that weren’t enough, she’s also got a husband and three kids. Sound impossible? “I balance it all,” she tells Yahoo!. “New York is filled with hustling moms and I think it’s something cool to show.”
You may know her as the former president and executive creative director of J. Crew Group, where Jenna Lyons transformed the catalogue-casual label into a truly fashion-forward brand. Now, the co-founder and CEO of a direct-to-consumer beauty company, the Girlboss, style icon and first openly gay woman on RHONY lives in the city with her teenage son and their dog, leaning into family life and friendships more than she’s ever had a chance to before.
On the flip side? “I’m not going to lie, I have a business,” Lyons tells Yahoo!. “I’m doing this for a specific reason, to connect to people and have them care about who you are. Also, other than Ellen or Rachel Maddow, there’s not a lot of gay representation on TV.” Our style tip? Work it, Jenna! Transparency looks great on everyone.
London-born fashion publicist and brand consultant Jessel Taank adds some international flair to the mix with her British sensibilities. Wife to husband Pavit and mother to toddler twin sons, she’s “the first Indian housewife ever to be cast in the franchise, and I love to be the first,” Taank says, according to Yahoo!. “I’m Hindu and Ubah is Muslim and there are certain taboo topics for women that come from those communities. I really wanted to come and eradicate some of that stigma.” Season 14 will take a look at some of those cultural shifts and Taank’s struggle to remain close with her parents while they’re back in England.
Another self-made working girl, Brynn Whitfield’s a brand marketing and comms pro who left her small Midwestern town for the big city and has been there ever since. She may look the part, but her profile definitely wouldn’t have fit the original RHONY gang — but good thing they got a makeover. “I’ve been engaged, I’m 37, I don’t have children, I’m single,” Brynn says. “I grew up poor on welfare and I’ve created a fabulous life for myself on my own.” The husband part? Not that it matters, but — she’s working on it. “In 2021, I went to a psychic and was like, ‘Where is my soulmate? Where is he? When do I get married?’” she admitts to Yahoo!. “He told me I was going to be on Real Housewives of New York.”