She saved the best for last. Gisele Bündchen walked the runway at the opening ceremony of the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, and the Brazilian supermodel proved the ideal spokesperson to kick off two weeks of celebrating athletes from all over the planet. Bündchen slowly strolled down the runway wearing a glittering gold gown from Brazilian designer Alexandre Herchcovitch while The Girl from Ipanema played in the background.
For weeks prior to the opening ceremony, there were rumors about what role Bündchen would actually play in the Olympics. In recent years, the mom of two, who is married to football star Tom Brady, has been selective about the modeling projects she chooses. That makes sense since she is already a global superstar who has the luxury of posing for high-end campaigns instead of taking editorial work or walking the runway.
Her official last runway show was actually at São Paulo fashion week last year, where Bündchen walked for Colcci. But when the Olympics call, even the wealthiest, most successful supermodel comes out of retirement for the night.
At the end of the day, Bündchen kept things classic and classy by simply strutting her stuff down the longest runway of her career and declaring this would truly be her final runway walk. And what a walk it was.
— raissa (@forgetherumors) August 6, 2016
Her hair, gown and iconic walk are on point here, and it’s clear from Bündchen’s expression that this appearance meant the world to her. This year marks the first time in history that Brazil has hosted the Olympics. Before hitting the big time at New York Fashion Week in 1996, Bünchen played volleyball in Brazil and is now famously an advocate for yoga and a healthy lifestyle. She isn’t just a pretty face; she embodies the spirit of the Olympics.
Prior to her appearance at the opening ceremony, Bündchen posted this beautiful photo on Instagram, along with a message about how much the Olympics mean to her and the world. “The unity that is felt is amazing and gives me goose bumps,” Bündchen writes. “There is so much dedication and love the athletes themselves pour into their chosen sport.”
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The Olympics symbolize so much for our global community. The unity that is felt is amazing and gives me goose bumps. There is so much dedication and love the athlete’s themselves pour into their chosen sport. Each athlete has given their all to achieve lifelong dreams and their journeys have led them here to Rio to compete for their countries with pride. The energy is electric and contagious. I am so happy to be part of the opening ceremony in my homeland and to celebrate these bright stars from around the globe. I truly believe that each Olympian lights the path for the next young child dreaming of being at the Olympics and encourages the practice of sports. As I walk down tonight on the longest runway I have ever been on I will be sending out all my love and positivity. I am humbled and honored to be part of this historic moment for my country. I believe that the unity is the key to creating a world filled with kindness, gratitude, peace, and love.❤️🙏🏼🇧🇷🌎 Os Jogos Olímpicos simbolizam muito para a nossa comunidade global. A união de todos os povos é maravilhosa e me dá arrepios. É tocante ver que os atletas colocam toda sua dedicação e amor no esporte escolhido por eles. Cada atleta deu seu melhor ao longo de sua vida para alcançar seus sonhos, e suas jornadas os trouxeram aqui para o Rio para competir por seus países, com orgulho. A energia é eletrizante e contagiante. Estou muito feliz por fazer parte da cerimônia de abertura no meu país e por celebrar as estrelas do esporte de todo o mundo. Eu realmente acredito que cada atleta olímpico ilumina o caminho para a próxima criança que sonha fazer parte dos Jogos Olímpicos e estimula a prática do esporte. Hoje à noite, quando eu desfilar pela mais longa passarela em que já estive, vou estar enviando todo o meu amor e positividade. Sinto-me honrada por fazer parte deste momento histórico para o meu país. Acredito que união é a chave para criar um mundo cheio de bondade, gratidão, paz e amor.
She may be retired, but Gisele will always be the runway queen.