The upcoming 14th season of “The Real Housewives of New York City” will again spotlight a group of fabulous, fashionable women living and working in Manhattan, but that’s where any ties to previous seasons end.
Bravo has a lot riding on the Big Apple reboot, and how it succeeds — or fails — may impact the entire “Real Housewives” franchise.
One thing’s for sure: the streamer has a lot riding on this younger, more diverse cast: Sai De Silva, Ubah Hassan, Erin Lichy, Jenna Lyons, Jessel Taank and Brynn Whitfield. Here’s everything you need to know about the new “Real Housewives of New York City.”
What is “The Real Housewives of New York City”?
“The Real Housewives of New York City” is a reality TV series and part of Bravo’s “Real Housewives” franchise. It launched in March 2008 and is the second “Real Housewives” series following “The Real Housewives of Orange County.”
The series was initially pitched as a series about Manhattan moms featuring Bethenny Frankel (the only non-mom and non-wife at the time), LuAnn de Lesseps (a countess through marriage), Alex McCord, Ramona Singer and Jill Zarin.
The cast has gone through many iterations through the seasons, but the women most commonly associated with “RHONY” are Frankel, de Lesseps, Singer (the only cast member who has appeared full-time every season), Sonja Morgan (who joined in Season 3) and Dorinda Medley (who joined in Season 7).
Why did “The Real Housewives of New York City” end?
Season 13 of “The Real Housewives of New York City” was filmed during the COVID-19 pandemic, and production was restricted. It aired from May through September 2021.
Amidst this was the racial reckoning around the murder of George Floyd. New addition Eboni K. Williams, the show’s first Black cast member, tried to have conversations about Black history (achievements and struggles) but they weren’t well-received.
The women’s lack of chemistry affected ratings and online sentiment. After the finale, Bravo launched an investigation after Williams filed a complaint against Singer, accusing her of making racist remarks. Singer was cleared.
Give the tensions among the women and the amount of time that has passed since initial filming, the season ended without a reunion hosted by Andy Cohen — the first in “Housewives” history. Afterward, the show in that iteration was canceled.
When was “The Real Housewives of New York City” rebooted?
In March 2022, Cohen announced that “RHONY” was being divided into two shows.
Casting was underway for “The Real Housewives of New York City” Season 14, which would feature an entirely new cast. “RHONY” had undergone significant change when it fired half the cast after Season 4, but this was a full reboot.
Casting took a long time, but at BravoCon 2022 in October, Cohen announced the newest bunch of apple holders: Lizzy Savetsky, Sai De Silva, Ubah Hassan, Erin Lichy, Jenna Lyons, Jessel Taank and Brynn Whitfield. Shortly after, Savetsky dropped out of the production, leaving only six women.
Who are the new “Real Housewives of New York City”?
Bravo provided bios for the new cast after the show was announced:
• Sai De Silva is a content creator who chronicles her fashion and lifestyle, garnering attention and partnerships from Dior, Fendi, Audemar Piguet, Bentley, Vogue and more. She’s a busy mom of two, loyal friend and devoted wife to her husband, David, who manages their household so that Sai can run the digital empire she has built from the ground up. A Brooklyn native, honest and straightforward, Sai’s friends would say she’s “as New York as it gets.” Her life may seem just as put together as her posts, but her polished exterior begins to crack when the passing of her mother forces her to revisit their complicated relationship.
• Ubah Hassan is a Somalian model, philanthropist and entrepreneur whose outgoing personality enters a room before she does. Channeling her zest for life, she’s the creator of her personal hot sauce company, UBAHHOT, which she hopes is her ticket to making it big in New York. After an initial boost from landing a spot on “Oprah’s Favorite Things,” she’s looking to take her business to the next level, and due to her trying upbringing and desire for total control, she feels the pressure to do it all on her own without the help of investors.
• Born and raised in Manhattan, Erin Lichy is a social butterfly who tends to find herself floating amidst the drama and isn’t afraid to stir the pot. Her naturally keen eye for spotting the next trend and die-hard work ethic has led to a prominent reputation in the New York real estate scene, in addition to running an interior design firm. With the only things more important than her career being her three children and husband Abe, this cosmopolitan is the definition of an overachiever who loves nothing more than to prove she can do it all.
• Jenna Lyons is the former President and Executive Creative Director of J.Crew Group and now Co-Founder and CEO of direct-to-consumer beauty brand LoveSeen. A seasoned entrepreneur, tastemaker and style icon, Jenna resides in her SoHo loft with her teenage son and loyal dog companion, Popeye. A new addition to this group, Jenna surprises even herself as she starts to let her guard down and open up about trauma from her early years. In this new chapter of her life, Jenna is learning to embrace her vulnerability and lean on her friends like never before.
• Jessel Taank is a fashion publicist, wife and new mom to twin boys who rarely sit still. Growing up in London, Jessel aspired to chase the American dream, and her hustle ultimately landed her in the Big Apple. Raised in a tight-knit yet strict Indian household, she continuously struggles to share intimate details of her life with her parents across the pond. A natural-born problem solver, Jessel is always seeking resolution, but her British sense of humor sometimes gets lost in translation with the New York sensibilities surrounding her.
• Hailing from a small Midwest town, Brynn Whitfield moved to New York and never looked back. A flirtatious, single socialite, Brynn is always the life of the party and the apple of many eyes. With her communications career currently on hold, Brynn is in search of what she really wants out of life and attempting to heal from past hardships. While she craves stability and having the kind of family she longed for as a child, her fear of commitment and busy schedule jet-setting the world tend to get in the way.
What is Season 14 of “The Real Housewives of New York City” about?
If the just-released trailer is any indication, Season 14 of “The Real Housewives of New York City” will be full of high fashion and high-stakes drama. Watch:
The first half of the teaser trailer introduces each woman and her affluent lifestyle: Erin is shown shopping for a $1.2 million diamond ring while Jessel discusses $62,000 tuition with her husband, Pavit.
Brynn is introduced as a massive flirt, who sets her eyes on a hired chef and also co-star Jenna (the third openly gay housewife after Julia Lemigova and Braunwyn Windham Burke). There’s, of course, a cast trip to Anguilla, and back home tensions arise between Jessel and Pavit. Ubah seems to get into it with Erin, and Sai seems to get into it with everyone, storming her way out of a birthday party.
When does Season 14 of “The Real Housewives of New York City’ debut?
“The Real Housewives of New York City” Season 14 debuts on July 16 on Bravo.
What happened to the “Legacy” show?
The “Real Housewives of New York City: Legacy” show is now “The Real Housewives Ultimate Girls Trip: RHONY Legacy.” It will air on Peacock instead of Bravo (at least a first) and includes the following cast members: Ramona Singer, LuAnn de Lesseps, Kelly Killoren Bensimon, Sonja Morgan, Kristen Taekman and Dorinda Medley.
What happened to Bethenny Frankel?
Frankel will NOT be appearing on the new reboot or “Ultimate Girls Trip.”
The Skinnygirl founder became a multi-millionaire after selling the cocktails part of her brand, but kept the rights to the Skinnygirl name to launch other products.
Bravo highlighted her engagement and marriage to Jason Hoppy in two spin-offs, “Bethenny’s Getting Married” and “Bethenny Ever After.” They had an acrimonious divorce and custody battle that lasted for years.
After a failed talk show, Frankel returned to “RHONY” in Season 7 only to depart after Season 11. She’s appeared in numerous entrepreneurial and business-oriented shows, including “The Big Shot with Bethenny” and “Money Court.”