From Hotel Heiress to Crypto Queen: How Paris Hilton Became a Prominent NFT Influencer and Web3 Investor

No longer just a hotel heiress, Paris Hilton is carving her own path in the Web3 space
Image source: Charles Sykes/Bravo | NBCUniversal | Getty Images

Quick take:

  • Paris Hilton created her first NFT in 2019.
  • She has invested in a few Web3 projects including Origin Protocol.
  • She has also hosted a metaverse party on Roblox and is partnering with The Sandbox to create her metaverse space.

Most people who grew up in the early 2000s would remember Paris Hilton for being a hotel heiress, socialite, and one of the stars of the American reality TV series, The Simple Life, in which Hilton and her co-star Nicole Richie struggle to do manual labour and live on a farm.

Today, she has turned her carefully crafted “dumb blonde” persona into a legitimate brand and multibillion-dollar retail empire which includes 45 stores and 19 product lines. She is also the world’s highest-paid female DJ, having commanded $1 million for a single DJ set, and has made $2.7 million DJing for four nights in Ibiza in 2014.

While Paris Hilton has been widely regarded as a joke for her public image of an unintelligent celebrity who achieved her fame through wealth, she’s now having the last laugh with her newfound status as a respected NFT influencer and crypto investor. 

Hilton’s activities in the NFT space began even before crypto art started booming last year, putting her ahead of the curve compared to her Hollywood celebrity counterparts. She created her first NFT in 2019 and sold it for charity in March 2020, which won her the Best Charity NFT award at the NFT awards ceremony that year. In April 2021, she launched her own NFT collection in collaboration with designer Blake Kathryn, with her 1/1 Iconic Crypto Queen art – an animated self-portrait of Hilton backdropped by pink clouds – which sold for 1,111 ETH.

Last August, she appeared on Jimmy Fallon’s The Tonight Show and schooled him on NFTs. In January this year, she made another appearance on the show, where she and Fallon compared their Bored Ape NFTs.

Hilton told The Guardian in November last year that she owns more than 150 NFTs—a number that has likely increased since then. In January, she tweeted about wanting to add more women-led NFTs to her collection with several replies from NFT projects trying to grab her attention. She switches up her Twitter profile pictures to newly acquired NFT pfps from time to time, with her current pfp being a piece from the 1,989 Sisters collection.

“I see NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, as the future of the creator economy. They use blockchain technology to help creators increase the value of their work and share it with fans in real time. And blockchain technology will allow artists to get paid on secondary sales as well. That’s never happened before and it is mindblowing how much that can change things for artists,” she wrote in a blog post.

Apart from NFTs, Hilton has been making investments in Web3 startups. She joined Origin Protocol as an advisor and investor, and launched a series of autobiographical NFTs dubbed “Paris: Past Lives, New Beginnings” on the Origin Story marketplace. Hilton also participated in Afterparty’s $4 million unsolicited funding round, while her media company 11:11 Media invested in Web3 entertainment company Mad Realities’ $6 million seed round.

Hilton’s activities in Web3 don’t stop at just NFTs and investments, especially when the metaverse is a part of this new iteration of the internet. She told CNBC that she was already developing Paris World – a virtual space where people could watch her DJ and hang out – in 2017.

Paris World eventually came to fruition on Roblox, where Hilton hosted her first metaverse party on New Year’s Eve last year. Last month, The Sandbox announced a partnership with Hilton’s 11:11 Media to provide her with an official Sandbox avatar and parcels of LAND themed around fashion, music and animals. 

Details on Hilton’s plans for her virtual space on The Sandbox are scarce, but initial reports suggest that fashion shows, NFTs and games play a big part. With her finger in each piece of the Web3 pie, including cryptocurrency which she has been investing in since 2016, Paris Hilton has firmly cemented her status as one of the most influential women in the space.

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