Celebs » Gisele Bündchen » Biography
Biography
Bündchen is a sixth-generation Brazilian of German descent, born in Três de Maio, Rio Grande do Sul, southern Brazil, to Vânia Nonnenmacher, a bank clerk pensioner, and Valdir Bündchen, a university teacher and writer, who are both of German descent. Bündchen was born and raised in Horizontina, a southern region in Brazil where there is a large population of German ancestry. She grew up with her five sisters—Raquel, Graziela, Gabriela, Rafaela, and her fraternal twin Patrícia, her junior by five minutes. She speaks Portuguese as her native language, in addition to Spanish, English and Italian. She studied German in school.

In 1993, Bündchen joined a modeling course with her sisters Patrícia and Gabriela at their mother's insistence. The following year, Bündchen was discovered by the Elite modeling agency at a shopping mall in São Paulo while on a school excursion. She was subsequently selected for a national contest, Elite Look of the Year, in which she placed second. Claudia Menezes from Bahia took first place. Bündchen placed fourth in the Elite Model Look world contest, held in Ibiza, Spain. At the age of 14, she then moved to São Paulo to launch her modeling career. In 1996, Bündchen had her first New York City break at Fashion Week.
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