I'm always looking for interesting things to do when away from home. So, on a recent holiday trip to Beverly Hills, I decided to see if I could interview someone I admired in the area. It only took a moment to come up with Josh Flagg, star of Bravo's Million Dollar Listing. I've watched the show from its inception and have always found Josh to be smart, stylish and devilishly handsome.
I emailed a request for an interview and Josh quickly responded that, alas, he was out of town for the holidays, but would be quite willing to be interviewed via the internet. I present to you the results of our conversation below.
Josh's grandmother plays prominently in many episodes of the show. Read more about Edith Flagg - and Josh's new book about his grandmother and her amazing life - at the end of this story.
fashionado Traveler: You jumped into the real estate business right out of high school. Why real estate?
Josh Flagg: I jumped into real estate because I have always been intrigued with beautiful homes. I could have become an architect, but I was not interested in building homes for other people and doing it to their taste, not my own.
Traveler: Where do you feel the luxury real estate market in Southern California is headed over the next six to twelve months?
Traveler: On your show, Million Dollar Listing, you're constantly using creative, often unusual methods to showcase properties and woo your clients. Where does your inspiration come from?
Josh: I have always been over the top, theatrical and an all-around show man. This is part of my technique in selling high end homes.
Traveler: It goes without saying that what is seen on television can easily be edited to create buzz or even change entire personalities. Do you feel that the show accurately reflects your relationships with Madison and Chad?
Traveler: I have also noticed that, unlike Madison and Chad, the show completely avoids any mention of any romantic partner(s) of yours. Might you share a tidbit or two about your romantic life?
Josh: Connect the dots.
Traveler: You have traveled even more extensively than the Fashionado Traveler. Do you have a favorite hotel?
Josh: George V, Paris; Hotel du Palais, Biarritz; The Lanesborough, London; The Carlton in Cannes and The Plaza in New York (It is in a different ball game today).
Traveler: How about favorite restaurants?
Josh: Cipriani and 21 in New York. La Maison du Caviar, Paris.
Traveler: Your fashion sense runs widely, from upscale casual to elegant to whimsical. How do you define your own sense of style?
Josh: Whimsical? I have never heard that one before, but I will take it! If I see something I want, I will buy it. If I can't justify spending the money on it, then I know I really don't love it. That is how I buy things. If I don't love it enough that I don't mind popping for it, then I move on to something that doesn't make me nauseous when I think of all the other things I could do with the money...for instance, feeding hungry people.
Traveler: Do you have favorite stores or brands?
Josh: I really like Gucci; I have always liked their things and, while their prices — along with every other couture house — are all out of whack, I find that theirs are somewhat more justifiable.
Traveler: I'm a "shoe horse". Do you have a favorite pair or brand?
Josh: While shoes are, of course, important, they are not the most important to me. However, if someone was to peer into my closet, the orange boxes would lead one to believe Tod's, although if I did not find their prices so offensive they would probably be Hermes.
Traveler: Where do you see yourself in twenty years? Anything special on your "bucket list"?
Josh: Traveling around the world, going from one hotel to another every week.
Traveler: Your amazing grandmother is a Holocaust survivor, and was a member of the Dutch Resistance during World War Two. She also is credited with being the first to import polyester - "Crimplene" - to the U.S. and ran a highly successful clothing business for many years. She obviously plays an important role in your life: a friend, mentor and trusted advisor. Can you say a few words about her and your relationship?
Josh: My grandmother is my life. She is an inspiration to everyone and her story is like a movie. It is almost fiction-like.
Josh has written a book about his grandmother, entitled “A Simple Girl: Stories My Grandmother Told Me”. It can be purchased - for a simple donation to The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles - at JoshFlaggBook.com. I'm eagerly awaiting my copy!
You can read a brief history of Ms. Flagg's inspirational life on Wikipedia.
The fashionado Traveler