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T H E B I G I N TERVIEW W HAT A GE N T: DAV I D'S C L A S SI C LOND ON H A NGOU TS ❶ The Beaumont - Brown Hart Gardens It's like stepping into the 1950s. The décor is Ralph Lauren-inspired and the service is impeccable. I walk in and they say 'Mr Gandy. Gin and tonic and The Telegraph?'. I'm like, 'I love this place, I'm never leaving!' ❷ before attending university, now works closely with Jaguar, recently got his racing licence, restored a 1960s Mercedes 190 SL and has started work on two other classics. Behind the wheel, says David, is where he's most relaxed. As 'the worst sleeper in the world', the model thinks meditation could calm his overactive brain: 'There's a million things going on in my head. I constantly wake up and think "That's an amazing idea!" People ask, "Did you really send me an email at 2.30am?"' In those wee hours Netflix is his go-to distraction. He's ploughed through Michael Dobbs' House Of Cards trilogy, real-life thriller Making A Murderer, tons of Sopranos repeats and the first two series of Homeland. 'If you don't sleep, it's great. You can get through a good few episodes. I'm like, "It's 4am, I've got to be up in two hours, I can get through another one!"' laughs David. 'It was the same with the Olympics. It was amazing to see what we achieved out in Rio. Post-Brexit, if anything proved that we Brown's Hotel - 33 Albemarle St I love anything to do with Winston Churchill and the politician was such a regular there that he said: 'I never stay in hotels. I stay at Brown's.' During World War Two, Churchill had his own bunker built under the Donovan Bar - it now serves a Winston Churchill Martini. ❸ Burlington Arcade and Royal Arcade I always tell visitors to have a wander around London. These arcades are precursors of the modern-day shopping centre and we're very privileged to have them. September BALANCE should unite as Great Britain and not look for increased separation, the Olympics is it. Our athletes have done amazingly well.' If modelling were an Olympic sport, David would certainly be draped in gold medals. He's fired by an unshakable desire to achieve perfection, but we point out that perfectionism has plenty of negative connotations... 'I don't know why. I will push and push and push to achieve the best I can,' defends David, adding that he inherited his fierce work ethic from his now-retired parents, who ran a freight company and property business in Florida. 'They taught me that you don't get given anything in life, you work for it. I don't do things by halves. It's about putting in 110%.' LOOKS OF LOVE That's surely good news for David's new girlfriend, junior barrister Stephanie Mendoros, who came on the scene after he split from The Saturdays singer Mollie King in February. Five months in, is Stephanie The One? 'She is someone very special in my life, but it's private and that's one thing I always keep to myself,' he says, side-stepping the question. He talks fondly of his five nieces and nephews; so when will he be ready for kids of his own? 'I think I probably am ready,' he smiles. 'I love children and dogs and I will have, one day, lots of both.' During our conversation, David reveals a handful of memories from his own childhood that suggest he had a privileged start in life. For example, he tells how his parents whisked him and his elder sister on intrepid, nature -packed adventures: 'Mum and Dad educated me and my sister through travel. We've been to the Galapagos Islands, we've trekked to see gorillas in Uganda, been to Alaska to see brown bears. We were very fortunate, but at 18 you don't realise how much.' He does now. A few months ago at a celebrity function, the model spent time swapping stories with broadcaster David Attenborough. 'Everything he had done, I had done,' says David. 'I called my dad and said: "I've just had the most incredible conversation with David Attenborough. I should thank you again now".' After spending a few hours in his company, it's clear David's staying power in a notoriously fickle industry - where younger, more beautiful men constantly chase his shadow - lies in his warm character and dedication to his own brand, not just his looks. B David Gandy is the new ambassador for Vitabiotics Wellman. ( 25

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