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A Beautiful Life – Rande Gerber and Cindy Crawford

 Separately, they have triumphed in their respective careers. Together, they are unstoppable.

Rande Gerber and Cindy Crawford are chameleons. One minute the couple is completely casual, padding through their elegant Malibu mansion barefoot in T-shirts and jeans, the next, they’ve gone utterly glam. She is every inch the supermodel in a flowing Valentina Shah halter dress, he, her ruggedly handsome counterpart in a navy blue Vince button-down. Regardless of what they happen to be wearing, one thing remains the same: this beautiful duo is head over heels in love. It is also clear that, apart from the love they have for one another, they also absolutely love the life they have and the work they do.

Gerber has been a nightlife and hospitality industry fixture for two decades. He is the founder of the Gerber Group, a luxury collection of restaurants, bars and lounges including LA’s haute Whiskey Blue lounge and Malibu’s Café Habana. The impresario has also branched out into the liquor industry as the creator of Caliche Rum and will soon release Casamigos, his tequila brand venture with business partner and pal George Clooney.

Crawford, his wife of 14 years, possesses an equally impressive resume. In addition to Cindy Crawford Home Furnishings, her furniture company that boasts $300 million in annual sales, she is the owner of Meaningful Beauty which rakes in over $100 million a year, recently launched the German-based clothing line Cindy Crawford C&A, is a spokesperson for Omega watches, supports several charitable organizations such as the American Family Children’s Hospital in Madison, Wisconsin, the Make A Wish Foundation and the St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital. She continues to model and still manages to make raising the couple’s two children, Presley, 13, and Kaia, 11, her top priority.

Separately, they have triumphed in their respective careers. Together, they are unstoppable. Just how do they manage to have such a picture perfect life? The answer is actually simpler than you’d expect.

“We’ve been together for about 20 years, and the foundation of our relationship is that we have a really strong friendship,” Crawford says without hesitation. “We genuinely really like and respect each other. We have fun together. Life is stressful and parenting is stressful, but we still make time for each other. We treat each other like friends and that’s great…but I still like looking at him,” she teases. “That’s not to be underrated.”

It’s easy to see how well the couple clicks: the two tend to finish each other’s sentences. Gerber picks up right where his wife leaves off: “I do have the most beautiful wife in the entire world. I look at her now the same way I did when I first met her. I look at her in the morning and see her lying there and I know how lucky I am.”

Crawford interjects that this couldn’t be possible, as she’s always up first, to which he jokingly amends, “I look at her in the middle of the night and realize how lucky I am” before continuing on more serious note. “We really like being together, we have a good time together. It takes a little bit of work, but if you’re friends first, it makes [marriage] so much easier. We both know what our priorities are and we work really hard.

Though they are both hard working, dedicated parents, the two both realize that to make their relationship work, they must make time for one another.

“We enjoy spending time together and we also try to have dinner as a family every night,” Crawford reveals. “Maybe two nights a week we’re actually out at events, but the rest of the time we are sitting down, having family dinners at home. We have a pretty normal life considering all the craziness around us.”

Family is of the utmost importance to both Gerber and Crawford, so much so that despite their hectic work schedules, one parent tries to be home with their kids at all times.

“Prioritizing is what works for us,” the 46-year-old stunner shares. “For example, I’m shooting for three days this weekend, but I still need to know that everything is handled when I’m not around. If we’re traveling for work and not together, we try to make sure that one of us is home holding down the fort.”

Agrees Gerber, “We’re fortunate. We do what we love and can also set our schedules as we wish. As Cindy said, one of tries to stay around. If I’m traveling she stays, and vice versa.”

The two also credit living away from hectic Hollywood as a reason for their current level of contentment; they have found true happiness living in the sleepy, picture-perfect beachside community of Malibu.

“We love the lifestyle in Malibu,” Crawford shares. “We’ve gotten into biking a little, as well as hiking. We both love the quality of life for raising a family. We loved New York City in our twenties and thirties, but this is where we want to be now. Now we make dinner reservations at 7 p.m., whereas when we lived in Manhattan, that was unthinkable. Malibu really suits where we’re at in our lives right now. Living in Malibu, you think twice before you commit to something in town. You don’t want to be stuck sitting in [the notoriously bad LA] traffic. I usually fall asleep on the drive home and Rande doesn’t seem to mind driving, so it works out great for both of us. She adds, “Living in Malibu has helped us edit our social obligations a bit.”

Malibu is also home to the couple’s favorite haunt, Café Habana, Gerber’s Mexican/Cuban café located in the Malibu Lumber Yard. It is where the two are most comfortable and most frequently found, whether it be entertaining friends, enjoying karaoke on Wednesdays (though neither has participated yet) or even knocking back a few Caliches (on the rocks with lime for her, neat for him).

“Café Habana is my favorite spot for many reasons. First of all, I get treated really well in all my husbands’ places,” Crawford jokes. She adds more seriously, “Both of our jobs are weird and hard for our kids to understand, so I wanted them to really see what we do. For kids, it doesn’t really add up, like ‘What kind of job is taking pictures?’ But when they’re at Café Habana, they could see Rande hiring people and building the restaurant.”

It is a place where their children have also begun to be involved in learning about the restaurant industry. “My daughter was seating people one day and cleaning menus. They have an understanding of the business,” the supermodel says of her doppelganger, Kaia, who had already modeled for Versace by the age of ten. “Our greatest accomplishment is our kids.”

The two credit the popularity of Gerber’s establishment with how genuine they themselves are. “Consumers are smart,” Crawford notes. “They realize that the projects we work on are authentic to how we live. My furniture business is successful because I am married with children; home therefore became an important evolution of my career. Rande spent 20 years in the nightlife world creating the lounge concept. To now transition all his knowledge and experience has morphed into successfully creating his own liquor brands.”

She adds, “All you need to do is look at his music playlists to know how authentic he is; a lot of them are entitled with alcohol names. Rande uses everything from music to the drinks he serves to set a tone. He’s the ambiance guy. That resonates with people; they know it comes from a real, true place.”

Agrees Gerber, “I want to be unique and original and truthful. I have to be proud of what I’m doing. When I created Caliche, it was something I really wanted to drink and that I wanted my friends to think is the best.”

The 50-year-old professes similar sentiments about his eatery as well as the tequila company he’s launching with Clooney. “We’ve been drinking Casamigos for the past four years. George and I both have homes in Cabo and the name of our company, loosely translated, means ‘House of Friends.’”

To Rande Gerber, friendship, family and love are the most important things in life – especially the love of his wife.

“There are so many things I love about her,” he muses thoughtfully after Crawford departs for a business meeting. “She’s still a small town girl at heart. The most important thing to Cindy is her family and making sure that we’re all happy. She’s so low-key despite her high-profile position. She’s someone who constantly gives back, who does so many things for so many people without asking for anything in return. She means the world to me.”

Photograpy Andrew MacPherson
Andrew Macpherson’s Studio Manager Anne Kim
Photo Assistant Alex Almeida
Hair Robert Steinken
makeup Samuel Paul
Stylist Julie Matos

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New York February / March 2014
New York February / March 2014