South Florida beauty Leola Bell thinks her eyes are her best feature, but guys tend to direct their vision a little lower. The Boynton Beach resident turns up the heat as Playboy’s Miss February, showing off her enviable figure (35D bust, 23-inch waist, 36-inch hips) in her first spread for the men’s mag. We chatted with the newest Playmate (turn-ons: rockin’ pecs and a beard; turn-offs: dirty bathrooms) about life in South Florida, playing dominoes with Hugh Hefner and what her dad, the preacher, had to say about her Playmate status.
How did this opportunity come about?
I used to do Playboy Golf where golfers would come from all over the world and there would be girls at each hole wearing cute outfits and entertaining the golfers. I won a free trip to the Mansion and after that Playboy called me to see if I would like to do a casting call for a Playmate shoot.
How does it feel to be one of few African-Americans to model for Playboy?
I think that over the years Playboy has broadened their horizons, there’s a pretty big mix throughout the magazine of beautiful women from all over the country. I am happy to break the mold. But I am actually more proud to be one of the older girls. I’m 27. You don’t have to be 18 to pose for the magazine.
Were you nervous about taking it all off?
I was not accustomed to it, but I always said that if I was going to pose nude, it was going to be for Playboy. After the first five minutes I was totally fine and everyone makes you feel so comfortable.
Your father is a preacher; did he have anything to say about this career move?
Playboy’s not for everyone, but I am his daughter and he loves me. Anything that makes me happy will make him happy.
How did you get ready for the photo shoot?
I’ve never really been too huge into diet and exercise but I just try to watch what I eat, I tried to cut back Big Macs and that was it.
Where would you want to spend your Valentine’s Day in South Florida?
Canyon in Fort Lauderdale, Houston’s in Boca Raton, SushiSamba in South Beach.
Who’s taking you out for Valentine’s Day?
I don’t know yet! That’s still in the works a little bit.
What are your favorite South Florida haunts?
I used to go to clubs a lot; I’ve kind of slowed down. I love going to Cameo and LIV. I like going to the movies, walking on South Beach, walking down Lincoln Road and the [Town Center] mall in Boca.
What do you do when you’re not posing for Playboy?
I used to work for Marriott. Before that I was a waitress at the Cheesecake Factory. I waitressed for one day at Hooters, just so I could have the uniform. But now I want to focus on Playboy so I dedicate my time to promoting my issue. I have been traveling a lot and continue working as a Playmate.
Did you get to meet Hef?
Back when I went to Mansion for first time, over a year ago. Every Tuesday he has game night with the Playmates so I see him all the time. Hef loves card games and Mexican train, a dominoes game. I am probably the worst person at playing, but I sent him a Tweet to tell him I’ve been practicing.