Vacation mode in Montenegro with Tara Emad
When rising actress and Instagram superstar Tara Emad needs to unwind, she leaves Egypt for her second home, Montenegro. Let’s tag along!
“I love how Montenegro contrasts so radically from my day-to-day life in Egypt. Cairo is very busy, there’s noise 24/7, people and traffic. It’s where I grew up and I love it, but when I come here I can just… breathe.”
Rising actor, model and Instagram superstar Tara Emad (1.3 million followers can’t be wrong!) has just spent a day showing us the very best of Montenegro. Being here, in her mother’s home country, helps the 26-year-old star to relax and rewind. Her career is in full bloom in Africa and the Middle East, with campaigns for fashion and beauty brands and movie and TV roles succeeding one another.
“I’ve always wanted to act. I can’t even remember a time when that wasn’t my dream. As a teenager I got a lot of modeling jobs. Being in front of the camera taught me how to move and what looks good or not on film, but my acting career was still slow. I was always auditioning but never got any parts. So I decided to take some acting classes.”
The training paid off. Today her agenda is full of acting. She has just finished a short film which is being submitted to film festivals, and the premiere of the thriller action movie ‘The Blue Elephant 2’ in August, where she plays a true badass, is coming closer. She’s aiming at making it in Hollywood soon.
But first: vacation. Her holiday style is relaxed yet stylish, and she finds inspiration for both her work and her wardrobe on the streets.
“I love people-watching, seeing the details that make a person who she or he is. It’s so fascinating. I always carry paper to scribble down things about people I see on the street. Sometimes I probably come off as a bit scary — but it’s so useful in my work, to feed my mind with all these characters.”
“I’m completely lost without my notebook and my calendar. People keep telling me to start taking notes on my phone instead, but it’s just not the same. I just love the feeling of writing things on paper, smelling a book or sending a postcard. It’s grounding to me. I also always bring my passport in my favorite passport wallet, a lip balm, a blusher, a hairband and something to read.”
Tara travels light, but some garments are essential in her luggage.
“This flowy dress is perfect for strolling the city of Kotor – as are the sandals. I almost never wear heels. Instead I go for sneakers or flats, so that I’m able to walk far or go for a spontaneous climb up the stairs to St. John’s Castle.”
“I love dressing in creamy shades of white, maybe because it’s a palette that represents new beginnings. My mom is constantly nagging me about wearing more colors. ‘Stop buying the white stuff!’ But when I do buy something colorful I end up not wearing it. I just like the freshness that the lighter shades give to my appearance.”
FOR A CALMING BOAT RIDE…
“My aunt and uncle have a summer house here, and I came here all the time as a kid. Every time we drove to the sea we had a pit stop at the cottage. The lake is massive and so beautiful, and when you take the boat to the middle of it you see nothing but the water and the mountains.”
FOR COFFEE WITH A VIEW…
“Twenty minutes from Podgorica there’s a café next to a canyon, and in the spring and early summer the canyon turns into a river, creating a beautiful waterfall. It’s the perfect place for a coffee break.”
FOR A CITY HIKE…
“This place is really something special. Gorica Park is like a mini forest with a mini mountain right in the middle of the capital. The nature is amazing! I love to come in the morning or in the evening, for a quick hike or run.”
FOR AN HISTORICAL OUTING…
“Kotor has one of the world’s best preserved medieval old towns in Europe, and it’s a great place for a day trip when you’re in Montenegro. The narrow alleys, the gray tones, the mini cafés – all with a massive backdrop of mountains. It’s stunning.”
FOR BEACH LIFE…
“If you come to Montenegro, you need to visit the coast and its perfect beaches. The sea is dark blue and the water is clear. Make sure to choose a beach close to Sveti Stefan, a village on a tiny island that has been rebuilt into a five-star resort.”
SOMETHING ABOUT YOU THAT NO ONE WOULD EVER EXPECT?
“I bake amazing bread! After years of training, I can finally make artisan bread that everyone I serve it to loves.”
MOST PRIZED POSSESSION?
“For my last birthday my mom bought me a classic piano that I’ve been dying to have. It’s definitely my dearest possession.”
THE FIRST JOB YOU EVER HAD?
“I was booked for a TV commercial when I was 9, but before the shoot I got chicken pox and looked like a dalmatian. I was sure this was my big chance and that if I missed it, I would never make it as an actress, so I got my mom to drive me for hours to do the job anyway. When we arrived it turned out I wasn’t the star of the commercial, I was more like the extra of the extras, a person standing at the end of the street, barely visible to the camera.”
THREE THINGS YOU LOVE?
“Animals, nature and family bonds.”
WHEN DO YOU GET NERVOUS?
“I get anxious when I’m doing all things spotlight-related. I’m really an introspective person who likes to observe things from a distance.”
MOST PLAYED SONG ON YOUR SPOTIFY?
“Let it All Go" by Birdy + Rhodes.”
SOMETHING EVERYONE SHOULD TRY?
“Traveling alone. It teaches you so much about yourself, and pushes you to love who you are. It has been eye-opening to me, to find out what I want to do when I don’t need to adjust to other people.”
BEST GIFT YOU’VE EVER RECEIVED?
“Can I mention three things? The classic piano, a ring from a very famous Egyptian jewelry designer and a piece of land in the Montenegro ecovillage Brezna. I am planning to build a house there soon.”
BEST GIFT YOU’VE EVER GIVEN?
“Ever since I was a child I have been writing letters to my entire family. I just found some of them here in Montenegro, and it was amazing to go back in time together with my aunt and cousins. It’s priceless to give someone a thought from the other side of the world every now and then.”
WHAT WOULD YOU CHOOSE AS YOUR LAST MEAL ON EARTH?
“I LOVE pasta. I would choose it for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I wish I could swim in pasta. It’s my go-to comfort food – pasta is ALWAYS a good idea.”
LIVES IN: Cairo
OCCUPATION: Actress and model
ASTROLOGICAL SIGN: Taurus