Where Is Kelly Bensimon Today?

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Kelly Killoren Bensimon didn't necessarily receive the best treatment from her Real Housewives of New York City co-stars. She knew just what to say to stir up drama, and she brought her own level of drama that made for some of the best reality TV moments. Like her epic meltdown on Scary Island. Reality. TV. Gold.

After driving her co-star Bethenny Frankel and the rest of the cast up the wall for three seasons, Bensimon's tenure as a full-time cast member came to an end when the series parted ways with her in Sept. 2011, according to a statement released by Us Weekly

We've seen many housewives come and go since then, but we still have a soft spot for this equestrian and momma of two who oozes positivity and girl power. So it's only right that we find out what she's been up to, right? No surprise, she's just as driven and headstrong as ever. With the announcement that both of her daughters are out of the house, Bensimon's schedule is still packed to the brim, but she finally has some time to work on her love life, and we have all the details on the type of man she is (and isn't) looking for.

From a jewelry collection to publishing a novel and selling multi-million dollar pieces of real estate, here's where Kelly Bensimon is today.

She published a bunch of books

Kelly Killoren Bensimon has been writing her entire life, she told Haute Living, and becoming a published author was a career path she dabbled in long before she became a housewife. After her stint on reality television ended, she continued to crank out literature. I Can Make You Hot!: The Supermodel Dieta book about — what else? — how to maintain a svelte figure just like Bensimon's, was released in 2012. Following its debut, she was encouraged by her agent to try her hand at writing a novel. 

Thankfully, Bensimon already had a story in the works that she had been plugging away at since she was a student at Columbia University. A Dangerous Age was released in 2016, a book that's described as "a sophisticated, indulgent, and delicious novel of contemporary New York City, perfect for fans of The Real Housewives franchise and Sex and the City." 

And a year later, she released The Second Course, a tale about "four old friends struggling to find their footing in a rapidly changing world." Ooh, sounds juicy!

She launched a 'destination vacation line' of jewelry

One thing Kelly Killoren Bensimon knows is style. As of this writing, she still models through MMG agency, according to Bravo, she's also the former editor of Elle Accessories. After her time on The Real Housewives of New York City came to an end, she made the decision to dive even deeper into the accessories industry. 

She teamed up with HSN in 2016 to launch her own collection of jewelry, simply called Kelly Killoren for HSN. It was a pivotal moment for her, especially since she has been a jewelry-fanatic for most of her life. "I literally have been making necklaces by hand since I was 16 years old," she wrote on her website.

The "destination vacation line" was influenced by her travels throughout America, and to get a jump-start on the designing process, she headed out to the Italian island of Panarea to work in conjunction with a jewelry designer. "He taught me to be playful with what I'm doing, not to be afraid to mix metals, like silver and brass, as well as high-end gems," she told Haute Living.

She faced challenges as 'the only cop'

After getting divorced from famed photographer Gilles Bensimon in 2007, Kelly Killoren Bensimon tried to embrace her life as a single mother. However, her newfound role as the sole caretaker of her daughters, Sea Louise Bensimon (pictured, right) and Thaddeus "Teddy" Bensimon (pictured, left), came with some hurdles.

During a 2016 chat with Personal Space (via Bravo), Kelly said, "One of the biggest challenges of raising teenagers is just raising them on my own." She added, "I mean, there's no other cop. I'm the good cop, and I'm the bad cop. I'm the only cop." Sill, she remained focused on her daughters' education and getting them into great universities, and she succeeded. Sea Louise moved into her dorm at the University of Mississippi in August 2017, while Teddy headed off to Trinity College in fall 2018, according to Bravo

"I am just doing the best that I can with what I have," she told Personal Space (via Bravo). "My job as a parent is to raise amazing, beautiful, gentle women, and that's what I'm trying to do."

Mission accomplished, Kelly!

This empty-nester is ready to find love

Kelly Killoren Bensimon told the New York Post she was ready to give online dating a try, but her heart wasn't open to just anyone. "I can tell immediately if you're a douche canoe," she said, before adding her requirements: "No smoking, can't be a partier." She also has a height requirement, but can you really blame the five-foot-ten-inch stunner? And as for what she would write on her dating profile, Bensimon told the Post: "I'm an empty nester and I'm ready to do almost anything!"

Since her 2007 divorce, she has yet to remarry, though she did have a years-long (and insanely dramatic) on-again, off-again relationship with a man named Nicholas Stefanov, according to the Daily Mail. However, Bensimon is definitely open to making a life-long commitment. "I would love to get married, commit to one person, and just build a life with somebody," she told Page Six in February 2019. "I'm dating and having a great time. I just feel really good about where I am in my life."

She was 'made' to sell real estate

Sure, we all know her for being a housewife, but there's nothing about Kelly Killoren Bensimon that screams stay-at-home mom. In fact, she added yet another job to her already-full résumé: real estate agent. "I'm made for this job," she tweeted in March 2018, along with a few photos of her first open house.

According to the New York Post, one of her first listings through Dolly Lenz Real Estate was her own home, "a fourth-floor unit in the posh and funky Police Building that will list for around $10 million."

By the time 2019 rolled around, the NYC socialite had teamed up with Warburg Realty as an agent, and she had found success with her new gig. "I've worked with so many people in so many capacities and the biggest takeaway from that is trust," she told Page Six. "So when I branched out into other opportunities especially in the real estate market, people trust me."

She's a 'serial entrepreneur'

With all of her various projects and business ventures, we're not entirely surprised that Kelly Killoren Bensimon describes herself as a "serial entrepreneur." She told Page Six that "leveraging [her] social media" to connect with her "international fan base" was a "game-changer" for her, especially when it came to her real estate side hustle.

The model and avid equestrian also realized that most of her fans were viewers of The Real Housewives of New York City, and thus, they probably think she's "kooky" and far from being a legit businesswoman. But Bensimon wasn't worried about their preconceived notions. "Every single person that meets me is like, 'I trust you,'" she said.

On the downside, being an entrepreneur and a mom of two means this former reality star's days are jam-packed. "I also have a very unusual work life, so I work very, very, long hours sometimes," she told Bravo.

She teamed up for a line of accessories

Not only did Kelly Killoren Bensimon design a collection of affordable jewelry for HSN, but the Bravolebrity also became a handbag designer when she linked up with Rachel Miriam seven years after she was booted as a full-time RHONY cast member.

Bensimon was ecstatic about the KKBxRM collection because it was released on a very important date. "On the anniversary when women received the right to vote, I am proud to launch a collection created by women and fueled by a sisterhood to make a difference," she wrote on Instagram. The 2018 limited-edition Hampton Classic Collection includes "a tote bag, clutch, and a blanket," and each item can be personalized with "vintage metallic gold, rose gold, or silver detailing and can be customized with any letter of the alphabet," according to Bravo.

In true Bensimon fashion, the collection was made for a great cause, with proceeds from the sales benefitting the Hampton Classic Jump for Charity, according to the brand's website.

She's open to returning to reality tv, but on one condition

Even though she was villainized while appearing on the Bravo series, and her mental health was put into question, Kelly Killoren Bensimon isn't ready to leave the small screen in the dust. She told Page Six in March 2019, "I think there's definitely going to be a comeback, but it has to be something that's work-related." 

What kind of work would that be? With all of her side businesses it would be easy for her to choose a lane and run with it, but wouldn't her career as a real estate agent make her a perfection addition to Bravo's hit show, Million Dollar Listing New York? Yas!

When the publication asked if she would be open to appearing on the real estate-themed program, she answered, "I do think they need a girl," before adding she was already friendly with some of the cast members, like Fredrik Eklund, Steve Gold, and Ryan Serhant, whom her former cast mate Jill Zarin (pictured, right) hooked her up with on an episode of RHONY.

She opened up about postpartum depression

Kelly Killoren Bensimon was always so chipper and jovial while appearing on The Real Housewives of New York — well, when she wasn't being goaded, of course. But behind her megawatt smile was a lot of pain that we weren't aware of until she opened up to Life & Style in January 2018. Bensimon told the magazine that she battled with postpartum depression after the birth of her eldest daughter.

At the time, the model was "living in the Hamptons and New York City" with her then-husband, so she had to deal with snarky comments from judgmental people who thought her life was picture-perfect. "But when you're by yourself, you can't drive, and you're afraid of your own kid, it's an incredible challenge," she said. "I felt like I couldn't even help myself, let alone my child. It was really, really difficult."

Thankfully, she was able to get some help in the form of horseback riding, which turned out to be the only kind of therapy she really needed, she told the publication.