Bar Refaeli was born into a secular Jewish family, in Hod HaSharon, Israel. Her parents, Rafael and Tzipi, own a horse ranch. Her parents were born in Israel, and her grandparents came from Italy, Lithuania, and Poland.Her mother was a successful model in the 1970s under her maiden name, Tzipi Levine.Refaeli has three brothers.
Previously linked to Baywatch actor David Charvet and Uri El-Natan, Refaeli began a relationship with American actor Leonardo DiCaprio in November 2005 after meeting him at a party in Las Vegas thrown for members of U2.
In the course of their trip to Israel in March 2007, the couple met with Israeli president Shimon Peres and visited Refaeli's hometown of Hod HaSharon.The relationship ended in June 2009.
Numerous reports, however, indicate that, as of early 2010, the romance may have been rekindled.In May 2011 it was reported that the couple had ended their romantic relationship, although they remain friends.
Her relationship with DiCaprio caused one nationalist Israeli organization to send her a letter, later leaked to the press, in which she was asked, for the sake of "future generations of Jews", not to marry a "non-Jew", a request similar to the one made to Israeli 1998 Miss World winner Linor Abargil, a few years previously.
Refaeli told L'Isha magazine that she prefers to keep a lower profile, but that she is out with DiCaprio much of the time. "I am there for him and I am at all the events", she says. "I just don't walk in hand-in-hand with him. I don't see any reason. I don't need to strike poses with him in front of the cameras. No one needs to know how we kiss"
Refaeli began a modeling career at the age of eight months, appearing in commercials. Refaeli had to wear braces in her early years, interrupting her modeling until age 15, when she returned to modeling.She was featured in campaigns for the fashion brands Castro and Pilpel, also starring in a commercial for Milky. Refaeli won the title "Model of The Year" in an Israeli beauty contest in 2000.
Refaeli at 18 years old Refaeli has appeared in ELLE (France), Maxim, and GQ (Italy). She debuted in the 2007 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, becoming the first Israeli model to appear in the magazine, posing with rock band Aerosmith. In 2009, Refaeli was the covermodel for the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. A photo from the shoot, featuring a bikini-clad Refaeli, was painted on the side of a Boeing 737 in a promotional deal with Southwest Airlines,leading to criticism of Southwest from passengers for using an image they regarded as inappropriately sexual and "offensive to families".
In October of the same year, Refaeli was again embroiled in controversy, when Haredi groups criticised a Tel Aviv billboard campaign in which she appeared semi-nude, alleging that it could "poison" the public.The billboards were subsequently removed.
She has modeled for Subaru, Accessorize, Brazilian clothing line Besni, Italian jewelry line Marco Bicego, and Rampage. In 2009 she modeled for Garnier International.
On 5 March 2009, Refaeli received the "World Style Award" presented by the Women's World Awards, for her "natural elegance, sense of style and compassion".In October of the same year, Refaeli co-hosted Fashionable Istanbul's press conference, announcing their October 2009 fashion event, also appearing in its advertising.
Refaeli was voted #42 in 2008, #57 in 2010, and #97 in 2011 in the FHM "100 Sexiest Women" list and came in first on Maxim's Hot 100 list of 2012.
In April 2012, Shalom Life ranked her Number 4 on its list of the "50 most talented, intelligent, funny, and gorgeous Jewish women in the world".
On February 3, 2013, GoDaddy used Refaeli and NASCAR driver Danica Patrick in one of its two 30-second Super Bowl XLVII commercials. In the ad, Refaeli, representing the "sexy side" of GoDaddy, kisses the actor Jesse Heiman, a former Chuck Buy More Nerd Herd staffer, representing the "smart side" of the service, to make the point "together, they're perfect".
Refaeli co-starred in the Israeli TV series Pick Up in 2005. In October 2008, she co-hosted the Bravo special program Tommy Hilfiger Presents Ironic Iconic America, based on the book Ironic Iconic America written by George Lois. She returned as a program host in 2009, this time for MTV's brief revival of House of Style.
On 18 January 2011, Refaeli attended the premiere of the English-language movie Session in Israel in which she starred. Directed by Israeli Haim Bouzaglo, the film is a psychological thriller that tells the story of a manipulative psychiatrist who becomes obsessed with a new young patient.
She served as a guest judge on cycle four of Germany's Next Topmodel hosted by Heidi Klum. In November 2012 she started her own model casting show Million Dollar Shootingstar on German TV Channel Sat.1
In 2011 Refaeli and Dudi Balsar, an attorney and former male model, set up an E-commerce company called Under.me to sell designer underwear.By November 2011, the company had raised $1 million in venture capital funds.
Refaeli volunteers for Project Sunshine, a non-profit organization providing free services and programs for children facing life-threatening illnesses. She has also volunteered for organization Ahava, which has been caring for pets abandoned in Northern Israel during the 2006 Israel-Lebanon conflict.
Refaeli and film director Shahar Segal have agreed to do a free campaign under the slogan "One Bag Less" to reduce the use of plastic bags.
In August 2010, she wrote a special report with the collaboration of Better Place on why she believes that more people should drive electric cars.
On June 7, 2013, Refaeli hosted a beach party in Tel Aviv for participants of the city's gay pride parade. She also posted a photo of herself on social media standing in front of a urinal, with the caption, “Gay, lesbians, bisexual, transgender ALL EQUAL TLV #gayweek.”
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