Anthony Bourdain’s loved ones recall late star’s obsession with tanning: ‘I could not really recognize him’


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The beloved chef and Emmy-winning host of CNN’s “Parts Unknown” tragically took his own life in 2018 at the age of 61.

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When Anthony Bourdain’s longtime assistant Laurie Wolver began interviewing her friends and family months after her death, she made several surprising discoveries along the way.

One of them was the late star’s peculiar obsession with tanning, which started in her early days.


The beloved chef and Emmy-winning host of CNN’s “Parts Unknown” tragically took his own life in 2018 at the age of 61.

Recently, Wooliver wrote a book titled “Borden: The Definitive Oral Biography,” Which was released on 28 September. The bestseller contains nearly 100 interviews with Bourdain’s loved ones, who reflected on his life and final years.

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One surprising fact that kept popping up in the conversation was Bourdain’s desire to tan.

Anthony Bourdain’s ‘indelible’ image from 2007 and what he thought of it was remembered by the photographer

“I remember his joke that he would compete in the George Hamilton Tanning Olympics,” brother Christopher Bourdain told him, as quoted. New York Post on Tuesday.

“That would tan, I think, largely to hide the yellowness of heroin,” cried James Graham, who worked with Bourdain in various kitchens. “He used to play hookie … and tan aggressively. He looked like a Versace bag.”

Even his ex-wives took note.

“I didn’t like the way he looked over the years,” admitted Nancy Bourdain, his high school sweetheart and first wife. “He looked like he was being pushed hard and wet…he didn’t care to be tan anymore.”

“He was very deeply in the last year of his life,” shared his second wife, Ottavia Busia-Borden. “I finally stopped watching the show because I didn’t really recognize him.”

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Bourdain did not have narcotics in his system at the time of his death, the new York Times previously reported. But his previous battle with addiction was no secret among his friends.

“His addiction was always strange to me,” said former kitchen aide Robert Vuolo. “It often felt part of the person he wanted to portray himself.”

According to the outlet, childhood friend Jeff Formosa also recalled that in the early years Bourdain and Nancy were upstairs in their apartment.

“When Tony’s father died, he got some money, and it just went through his veins,” he claimed.

Bourdain would go on to achieve worldwide stardom, described by longtime producer Lydia Tenaglia as “the great cultural anthropologist that everyone loved dearly”. But in his later years, the outlet reported that Bourdain considered leaving because he struggled with fame and an intense travel schedule that kept him away from his family. While longtime producers insisted Bourdain that it was okay to stop, he continued.

Chef/TV personality Anthony Bourdain attends the Creative Arts Emmy Awards Governors Ball at the Microsoft Theater on September 10, 2016 in Los Angeles, California.

Bourdain’s marriage to Otavia ended amicably in 2016 and he recovered with the help of jiu-jitsu – but when someone new came into his life, director Michael Stead said that all changed.

“It was the peak period where he seemed happy,” he explained. “And then f—–g what’s-her-name enters his life, and he starts smoking again, and it comes back to the negative energy that fits into this weird fictional character. is who he felt he was.”

The outlet noted that the person in question was Bourdain’s girlfriend, actress/director Asia Argento. Some believed that his “unstable relationship” separated him from close friends and contributed to his depression. The 46-year-old was not interviewed for the book and denied that problems in their relationship contributed to his death.

Bourdain’s daughter Ariane reveals that she cherishes happy memories of her beloved father — and what he still means to those who love her.

“He will always try and show me the world around me, by [helping] I experience new foods and new things,” said the 14-year-old. “I want people to remember my father as someone who would open people up to the world outside their apartment.”

If you or someone you know is having suicidal thoughts, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

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