With every season of Selling Sunset, there’s no shortage of villainous personalities. But while keeping one eye open at all times feels quite on brand for the team at The Oppenheim Group, the gang’s fan-favourites are on another level. After all, who could forget how fans rallied around Chrishell during her divorce?
And now, it looks as if one of the series’ newcomers may be ready to earn her crown as onscreen sweetheart.
Meet Vanessa Villela.
Ready to tackle the most luxurious properties in Malibu, Villela is one of two new faces joining the cast, alongside Emma Hernan. Brought into the group to replace Davina Potratz and a then-pregnant Christine Quinn, the pair unite real estate forces with our favourites, including Chrishell Stause, Mary Fitzgerald, Heather Rae Young, Maya Vander, and Amanza Smith.
With Selling Sunset‘s fourth season currently streaming on Netflix, there’s no better time to become familiar with the fresh faces set to take over your screens for the foreseeable future.
Here, everything you need to know about Vanessa Villela—from her former soap star status to her animal advocacy.
Villela Is A Former Soap Star
Much like her co-star Chrishell Stause, both she and Villela found their big break as actors in soap opera dramas prior to acquiring their real estate licenses.
On Villela’s IMDB profile, one can see an impressive collection of acting credits that date back to 1991. In her bio on the website, it states that she is of both Spanish and Italian heritage and was born in Mexico in 1978, before she became a United States citizen in 2017. Her main body of work is listed as Una Maid en Manhattan, a Spanish language TV version of the hit Jennifer Lopez movie, of which she appeared in 67 episodes.
When announcing her addition to the Netflix reality series, Villela took to Instagram to thank her longtime fans for their endless support.
“For all my fans who have followed my entire career from my days in Mexico, I thank you for being on this journey with me,” the caption reads. “I’ve been dreaming of busting into the American market. And I seek to represent the Latin community, empower people to live for each day and hold the bar of your dreams!!!”
She Is Also An Aspiring Fashion Designer
Given her past in acting and her foreseeable future in luxury real estate, it’s clear that Villela is mutli-talented. But what many may not know is that she is also an aspiring fashion designer.
In 2021, the 43-year-old took to Instagram to reveal that she had been collaborating with swimwear brand Lascivious on a series of designs, sharing an array of photos of herself in the looks.
As of now, Villela’s collaboration doesn’t look to be available, however, it’s proof enough that selling luxury abodes isn’t the only skillset up her sleeve.
Villela Loves Yoga, Travel And Is An Advocate For Animal Rights
In her official bio on The Oppenheim Group’s website, Villela spends her spare time supporting international animal welfare fund ifaw, and is vocally passionate about yoga, so much so that she regularly attends Naam Yoga in Los Angeles.
Notably, she has also publicly addressed her love for travelling the world. Back in October, Villela took to Instagram to share how travelling has “enriched” her life.
“Travelling is about enriching your own life. It’s about making memories, creating lifelong friendships, and so much more…. Those chances aren’t always there, so take the chances you do have to travel and explore. Be adventurous and feed your soul with memories and good times.”
None Of The Selling Sunset Cast Knew Her Before The Show
Unlike Hernan, who has also joined the cast for the show’s fourth season, Villela is completely unknown to the tight-knit group of realtors and had never met anyone from the cast prior to joining the show.
Speaking to Cosmopolitan UK about the new season, Amanza Smith told the publication, “None of us knew Vanessa at all”.
“But she quickly is like family. It’s funny, like Jason really is very [specific in] the way he chooses people to join the brokerage, I don’t know if he has a little checklist. She fit right in and very quickly became, you know, just one of the family.”
She Just Celebrated Six Months At The Oppenheim Group
While Vilella is brand new to our screens, it turns out that she has been a part of The Oppenheim Group for the past six months. In October 2021, the former soap star celebrated her half-year anniversary at Jason and Brett’s real estate brokerage.
Sharing a photo of the Selling Sunset group, Villela wrote on Instagram, “Today marks 6 months since I joined the @theoppenheimgroup I can’t begin to tell you how proud I am to be a part of this family. I love and respect all the members of the team.”
Of course, if you’ve seen even a snippet of Selling Sunset season four, then you surely know that drama is soon to ensue.
Ready to binge-watch? You can check out season four of Selling Sunset on Netflix now.