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The Real Housewives of Orange County

Playing Nice with the Real Housewives of Orange County

Credits: By: Greg Root Photos: Michael Rosenthal/Bravo, Colleen Hayes/Bravo, Isabella Vosmikova/Bravo, Vivian Zink/Bravo, Martin LePire/Bravo

As the warm days and starry nights of another California summer roll along, we thought it would be fun to check in with Vicki, Tamra, Gretchen, Heather and Alexis to talk about their favorite summertime moments and memories. Some of the ladies shared long and intimate details while others answered short and sweet. It’s this characteristic diversity that makes RHOC a guilty pleasure for millions and has propelled the ladies and the show through seven unforgettable seasons. Here’s what they had to say.

Gretchen Rossi Q&A Gretchen Rossi

Favorite Summer song? Well, I have to say my new favorite is my own song “Unbreakable,” by me! It dropped June 26 and it’s inspired by my boyfriend Slade’s son Grayson, who’s going through some really tough times with very serious illness. He’s so strong and unbreakable. He inspires me. It also is a song that describes me and all that I’ve been through over the last couple of years.

Favorite beach? I love all the beaches in Tahiti, especially Bora Bora. It’s an amazing paradise.

Favorite Summertime recipe? Watermelon, feta cheese and jicama salad with mint. And my new favorite cocktail, the “Coronarita.” It’s a big Margarita with a Corona turned upside down into the glass. Sounds a little strange but it tastes great!

Favorite place to catch a sunset? Newport Peninsula in Newport Beach, California.

Favorite Summertime tradition? My family always gets together at Bass Lake in the Sierra National Forest. My parents have a house there where we all go to hang out at the lake with the family, dogs, and kids. (I have a new baby nephew. So that’s going to make this summer especially memorable.)

Bikini or one piece? Bikinis of course! I buy most of my suits from Luxe by Lisa Vogel in Newport Beach. She makes custom suits that I love.

Favorite place to watch fireworks on the 4th? Bass Lake again. We love to watch the fireworks over the lake from the top of the mountain or we float around on the lake and watch ‘em overhead.

Favorite summer memory? When I was young, my family would camp at Campland on the Bay on Mission Bay near San Diego. We would drive down the coast from our home in La Crescenta (near Pasadena, California) and we would get very excited when we saw the “big boobs” at San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant. Once we arrived at camp, I put New Kids On The Block posters in my tent! I would always bring a girlfriend and, of course, we would sneak out to meet the boys in the campground. I even brought WD40© to oil the zipper on the tent to make it silent. One time, we got dressed and wore robes over our clothes, telling my dad we were going to the campground bathroom. Of course, we left our robes in the bathroom and went to the camp store to meet boys. Unfortunately, my dad discovered the robes and waited for us. Man, were we busted!

Spray tan or the real thing? Spray tan. I was having a hard time with a lot of the spray tan products out there. So I made my own formulation, “Tan in a Can.” You find it on my site, Favorite romantic restaurant? Our favorite spots don’t have to be fancy but Slade and I love good food. We do love Kuleto’s in SanFrancisco. You can sit by the bar and watch them create and plate their dishes. It’s fabulous.

Heather Dubrou Q&A Heather Dubrow

Favorite Summer song? Anything by the Beach Boys.

Favorite beach? Emerald Bay in Laguna Beach.

Favorite Summertime recipe? Sangria.

Favorite place to catch a sunset? My backyard.

Favorite Summertime tradition? Heading to the Hamptons to see my family.

Bikini or one piece? After 4 kids, definitely a one piece!

Favorite place to watch fireworks on the 4th? My friend Donya’s backyard. We always spend 4th of July together.

Favorite summer memory? Last day of school!

Spray tan or the real thing? Real thing. A bit of “Vitamin D” is good for you. However, most of the time I am slathered in sunscreen and under a hat!

Favorite romantic restaurant? Anywhere I am with my husband!

Tamra Barney Q&A Tamra Barney

Favorite Summer song? All summer long (Kid Rock).

Favorite beach? Bora Bora.

Favorite Summertime recipe? Cucumber salad with mint and feta.

Favorite place to catch a sunset? Newport Peninsula in Newport Beach.

Favorite Summertime tradition?  Traveling to a different foreign country.

Bikini or one piece?  Bikini, I’m too short-waisted for a one piece.

Favorite place to watch fireworks on the 4th? The city I live in puts on a huge show every year. The whole town sits in the surrounding parks to watch.

Favorite summer memory? On the family boat as a kid in Lake Havasu.

Spray tan or the real thing? Spray tan because it doesn’t damage your skin, but I love a real summertime tan too.

Favorite romantic restaurant? French 57 in Laguna Beach.

Alexis Bellino Q&A Alexis Bellino

Favorite Summer song? Calvin Harris, “Feel so close” makes me feel like summer.

Favorite beach? I love any beach, as long as it’s tropical, sunny and warm. I got engaged to “my best friend” at the Four Seasons,Maui. So, that’s my absolute favorite.

Favorite Summertime recipe? Watermelon, Basil and feta cheese salad with a light Italian drizzle, yum.

Favorite place to catch a sunset? You guessed it, Four Seasons, Maui.

Favorite Summertime tradition? Hanging out with the kids at the beach, staying ‘til dark and having a fire with marshmallows and s’mores.

Bikini or one piece? Well, one piece suits can be really hot, but for my body, I have to say a bikini just fits better. It must be my long torso, ha-ha. I buy most of my bikinis at Beach Candy in Newport Beach where she makes custom suits that fit my curves perfectly.

Favorite place to watch fireworks on the 4th? I don’t like crowds. So we usually “yard hop” to my friend’s homes in the neighborhood. Any place the kids can play and the adults can hang out is great. It’s not the greatest for watching fireworks, but it’s the most fun for the family.

Favorite summer memory? I loved the 4th of July when I was a kid growing up in Hannibal, Missouri. All of the neighborhood families would get together to light fireworks, eat junk and play. The kids would light sparklers and the “safer” fireworks, and the dads would light the dangerous stuff.

Spray tan or the real thing? Spray tan. It’s just too dangerous and hard on the skin to lay in the sun for hours (like I used to). Hopefully we won’t get cancer from breathing spray tan fumes!

Favorite romantic restaurant? Ferraro’s in Maui. It’s the place I got engaged and it’s a beautiful restaurant in a beautiful spot right on the beach.

Vicki Gunvalson Q&A Vicki Gunvalson

Favorite Summer song? I am a country girl at heart and my favorite music is country! My favorite summer songs is “Beer in Mexico” by Kenny Chesney. It puts me in mood to drink beer, get together with friends and have a great time. Another is “My Little Girl” by Tim McGraw. When my own “little girl” got married recently, we hired a country band for the wedding. They changed the title to “Mommy’s little Girl” and there wasn’t a dry eye in the place.

Favorite beach? I have a girlfriend with a house in South Naples, Florida where I love to hang out, take long walks on the beach and think up my next million dollar project. For relaxing, my all-time favorite beach is near our place in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.

Favorite Summertime recipe? We love grilled salmon with home-made pesto and vegetables. That’s kind of a basic meal with us, veggies and protein rich, low fat meals.

Favorite place to catch a sunset? Again, I gotta go with Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. In my opinion, they have the best sunsets in the world.

Favorite Summertime tradition? We have a place on the river in Parker, Arizona where we go every summer to unwind and hang out. At this point in my life, I am coming off a 2nd divorce,stronger, louder and happier than I’ve ever been. Summer’s all about heading to the river, listening to Kenny Chesney, drinking beer and enjoying ourselves.

Bikini or one piece? Come on, bikinis of course! I don’t like them too skimpy but I am a “bikini fanatic,” so I have a lot of bikinis to choose from. My selection goes from itsy-bitsy to conservative, depending on how I feel at the time.

Favorite place to watch fireworks on the 4th? That’s easy. Lake Havasu is our spot. Watching fireworks from a boat on the river is the best!

Favorite summer memory? I have a lot of great summer memories and they all revolve around boating on the river with the kids.

Spray tan or the real thing? I’m always REAL, baby.

 Favorite romantic restaurant? The Vista Grill in Puerto Vallarta. It’s a beautiful restaurant that sits on a hill overlooking the city and the sea. It’s the best.

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