Celebrity Smokers

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famous smoking peuple

In the past year there has been a barrage of news stories detailing the rise in the popularity of cigar and cigarettes smoking among men, women, and aspiring yuppie college students.

Celebrity endorsements and seductive advertisements featured in these cigar magazines entice first time cigar smokers to give it a try. How much has really changed when it comes to marketing cigars? During the early decades of the twentieth century, cigar companies packaged their cigars in boxes decorated with colorful prints of nude and semi-nude females. In 1997, consumers are exposed to glossy full-color adds featuring sleek, scantily clad models bearing cigars. Former cover models for Cigar Aficionado magazine include Linda Evangelista, Lauren Hutton, and Demi Moore. The cover of the Spring 1997 issue of Smoke magazine features supermodel Elle Macpherson in a barely-there dress with a cigar hanging from her mouth. The only difference between these ads and the prints of the good old days is the new “cover girls” are being used as a way to attract female smokers as well. George Burns once said, “Happiness is: A good martini, a good meal, a good cigar and a good womanor a bad woman, depending on how much happiness you can stand.” The promotional image of today’s cigar smoking woman is that she is strong, independent, and could do without the company of a man as long as she could enjoy all the other luxuries of life as mentioned in Mr. Burns’ quote.

Further promoting the idea of an elite, cultured smoking class is the installation of cigar bars and cafes in metropolitan areas across the country. Celebrity endorsement or ownership of such establishments is a further incentive to the young cigar smoking crowd. In Beverly Hills, major celebrities including Arnold Schwarzenegger, Tony Danza, Milton Berle, and Meat Loaf have personalized nameplates on the glass enclosed humidor of the Grand Havana Room. Baseball’s Ken Caminiti, hockey’s Mario Lemieux, and actor Jason Gedrick have recently become business partners as they prepare to open a new cigar bar called Ashes Cigar Club on Wall Street this summer. In addition, actors Chuck Norris and James Belushi are opening three new private label cigar lounges in Texas. Of course, if you can’t make it to a celebrity owned cigar bar you could always attend one of Smoke magazine’s “Le Cigar Noir” events in a city near you. For a mere $145 per person participants in these events can indulge in a four-course dinner, premium alcoholic beverages, a personal travel case stocked with exclusive cigars, and the chance to talk with cigar manufacturers or receive a greeting from one of many celebrity cigar smokers who might be in attendance.

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