LUXURY REAL ESTATE DARLING CHRISTINE QUINN OF NETFLIX’S SELLING SUNSET IS RIDING A SHOOTING STAR WITH THE “SUDDEN SUCCESS” SHE WORKED YEARS TO ACHIEVE
BY LAURA D.C. KOLNOSKI
“Catching up” with breakout reality television star Christine Quinn is not as casual an endeavor as one might expect. Our quest for the breakout star of Netflix’s Selling Sunset found her on a media blitz through the United Kingdom, promoting her episode of the recently rebooted MTV Cribs. In a case of “turnabout is fair play,” Quinn shows off her own magnificent abode on the show, a contrast to her day job showing multi-million dollar properties to prospective buyers.
Quinn’s expansive roost dazzles with its gleaming kitchen, big window views, and décor “dripping with gold,” as she described it. In October, she announced she had confirmation for a fourth season on Selling Sunset, currently airing its third season.
On the unscripted series, Quinn is part of an elite team at the Oppenheim Group real estate brokerage firm selling high-end luxury properties in the Los Angeles area. She quickly became a cast standout, garnering social media attention across multiple platforms, and is now one of the Oppenheim Group’s top earners.
On the show, Quinn has cultivated the persona of the “villain,” adding to the professional and personal dramas generated among the sizable cast. Netflix describes it thusly: “Mind-blowing mansions, shocking new romances, and explosive truths! Selling Sunset follows seven of the city’s most successful female realtors who work under the same roof. They work hard and play harder as they compete with the cutthroat L.A. market and each other.”
Heady happenings for the former actress and model from a “modest, conservative” Dallas upbringing, where she was raised by her mother, a computer engineer/homemaker, her aerospace engineer father, and her older sister. Quinn’s favorite subjects in school were history and theater, while afterschool hours were spent swimming, playing tennis, and horseback riding (she’s an English jumper).
After high school, Quinn took acting classes, and she later worked for a fashion company in New York. While there, she studied at Juilliard before returning to Texas, eventually moving to Los Angeles to pursue her dreams of acting. Quinn worked through it all – at fast food joints and big box stores, as well as waiting tables and bartending.
A successful career in fashion and entertainment followed. Quinn has had more than 20 acting roles in films and TV, as well as voicing a video game character. Her small screen resume lists NCIS: Los Angeles, Ballers, Drop Dead Diva, Angie Tribeca, and more.
Back when she couldn’t afford new clothes, the noted fashionista wore hand-me-downs. It was that resourcefulness and instinct, combined with “strong roots,” that formed her strong foundation and helped keep her grounded today, she said.
“I was named a ‘Hometown Hottie’ in 2017,” she laughed. “I also worked for a men’s custom suit company. I was horrible at that job and ultimately got fired.” While on a break from acting, after consulting with friends in real estate, she decided to study and take the test to get her license.
“I was working with the Oppenheim Group for a few years when I was approached to film Selling Sunset,” she recounted. “I was quite excited about it.” As are the show’s growing legion of fans who have latched onto her style and storyline. If Quinn’s red-lipped, blonde bombshell look seems familiar, it’s a purposeful homage to her role models Marilyn Monroe and Dolly Parton, with a touch of another fave, Grace Kelly.
Quinn married Christian Richard, a retired tech entrepreneur and businessman, in December of last year in a gothic “Wicked Winter Wonderland” themed wedding that was featured on the show and seen around the world. The bride arrived in a vintage black horse-drawn carriage pulled by two black stallions. Her sparkling black off-the-shoulder ceremonial gown, as well as her sexy reception dress adorned with feathers, along with the event’s dramatic red and black decorations augmented by glittering white trees, were featured in People and Oprah magazines.
The “dream house” she and Richard reside in is another fortuitous happenstance of her real estate career. Formerly owned by the late Hugh Hefner’s third wife Crystal, the listing originally went to Oppenheim. Quinn would sit the open houses every weekend, envisioning herself living there. Oppenheim eventually lost the listing, but the tale didn’t end there. While she and Richard were traveling in Switzerland, Quinn noticed the house was back on the market, but due to the staging, she did not immediately recognize it as the same house. They scheduled a showing immediately upon returning to the U.S.
“The second I walked in I got the chills,” she recalled. “I realized it was the same house and we immediately bought it.” It has since undergone two renovations. Quinn said her love of interior design and architecture emanates from her many travels to exotic locales. (Speaking of exotic, fear not. The live tiger on the grounds during MTV Cribs was only a “rental” making a guest appearance for the day, she confessed.) She and Richard still enjoy traveling for sightseeing and culinary adventures whenever possible.
This holiday, while she’s spending more time closer to home, Quinn said she and her husband are reveling in the joys and traditions of the season, recalling good times and happy memories. With New Year’s Eve travel potentially curtailed, Quinn has her sights set on 2021, when she said, “Some amazing things are in the works,” although she couldn’t reveal them yet.
“I normally spend time with my family during the holidays, and I love our time together,” she related, recalling Christmases past. “My parents always gave us $100 in one dollar bills. They would hide it or put it in something very silly and we had to find it. That was our Christmas present so we could buy our own thing. It’s a tradition I loved. We always cook an amazing meal together with ham, turkey, the whole nine yards.”
Decking her halls began early.
“Another favorite thing about the holidays I love are my Christmas decorations. I love to decorate my Christmas tree; it’s different every year. It’s 20 feet tall and last year the tree was Louis Vuitton themed. This year will be something fabulous. I started working with a personal floral designer well in advance to figure it out.”
Underneath the glamour, Quinn is serious about being an active, socially conscious supporter and advocate for causes like #BlackLivesMatter and homelessness. Despite the squabbles and realty drama of Selling Sunset, it’s another way Quinn retains her lifelong principles.
“I believe honesty and integrity are the golden standards in business,” she said. “I don’t sugarcoat anything. That’s why I’m successful.”