Just after dawn on a Monday morning in Ibiza, you will find Paris Hilton decked out in a shiny bathing suit, standing high above thousands of partiers at the mega-club Amnesia, spraying giant streams of foam onto the soaked masses below. She’s cheerily posing for pictures with fans, hangers-on and VIPs. She’s dancing exuberantly in heels, surrounded by bikini-clad models. As night turns to morning, the bubbly energy that cemented her as a fixture on the party circuit will never falter. As Hilton will be the first to tell you, she’s a professional. And this is her business.
“Inventing getting paid to party — I’m sorry, people want to hate on that? I think it’s pretty awesome,” Hilton said the day before, sipping rosé and reclining on a shady poolside couch at the Nobu Hotel on the famed Spanish vacation island. She may have risen to fame playing a simpleton on the reality series The Simple Life in 2003, but arriving at the place she is now — creator of a lucrative global business empire and reportedly the highest-paid female DJ in the world — has required brains far beyond what that caricature might have suggested she possesses.
Now 36, she is the master of an ever-expanding franchise that counts 23 perfumes, 19 product lines (including a new “Unicorn Mist” spray), over 45 stores, an upcoming app and VR project, one album and another forthcoming, not to mention her charity work to raise money for underprivileged children. She’s gone from heiress to a hotel fortune — her great-grandfather Conrad Hilton founded Hilton Hotels — to bonafide hotelier: she plans to open her second self-branded hotel site soon, after opening the Paris Beach Club residences in the Philippines in 2013. In fact, she insists, she’s barely taken a dollar from her family since flying the coop as a teenager.
And then there’s the DJ thing.
Despite what it might look like to skeptical onlookers — celebrity makes a foray into a glamorous side gig on a whim — Hilton’s career as a DJ is a relentless grind. She is on the road 250 days a year, she says, and makes sure her team books her until 4:00 a.m. whenever they can. “As a businesswoman, I want to get the biggest fee possible, so I want to go to the places where they have a budget and it’ll be worth my time,” she says. That’s why she’s spending Monday morning at the club for her weekly summer Foam and Diamonds Party. Amnesia is a regular gig: she’s been a resident summer DJ for five years running, putting on an eclectic set for two near-dawn hours every Sunday night.
This particular gig is something of a homecoming. Amnesia was the first big party Hilton ever checked out on the island, after tricking her father Richard into letting her and her sister Nicky jet off to Ibiza as teens. (They told him they were headed to Cannes.) She met the owner on that first night and says she knew even then that she would one day be behind the booth.
Read more at Time.