Cover girl Danielle Herrington leads the sizzling guest list at the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit launch party

We're still a long way off from summer, but New York City was sizzling on Wednesday night as the 2018 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue cover girl Danielle Herrington celebrated the edition's launch at Magic Hour at Moxy Times Square alongside fellow beach beauties Ashley Graham, Kate Upton and Christie Brinkley's daughter Sailor Brinkley Cook. Twenty-four-year-old Danielle, who was first featured in iconic SI Swimsuit edition last year, is also now a part of modeling history as the third African American woman – following Tyra Banks and Beyoncé – to grace the coveted cover. The California-born rising star had the full support of Swimsuit issue legend and party guest Tyra, who had previously sent Danielle a special message congratulating her on her landmark shoot. "There are so many people telling little girls that look like us that we're not good enough and that we can't achieve our goals, but by them looking at me back in the day, and then looking at you now, you are the living embodiment to say that dreams do come true," said the America's Next Top Model host.


Danielle made history as the third-ever African American model to star on the coveted Sports Illustrated Swimsuit cover Photo: Getty Images


When Danielle's big role was announced, young star described the photo shoot as a dream come true. "I can't even believe I'm saying this. I am the 2018 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit cover model," she shared. "I can't wait for everyone to see it. I'm emotional, but I just want to say thank you to everyone who believed in me. I put in so much work for this and I'm feeling very accomplished, happy and excited."

While the issue itself is filled with sultry shots of the supermodels wearing the latest swimwear styles, the Valentine's Day party was a veritable red carpet fashion show.

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Model guests: Sailor Brinkley Cook, Danielle and Tyra Banks, and Lais Ribeiro and Robin Holzken Photos: Getty Images

Tyra wore a nude LaBourjoisie gown, Kate Upton sparkled in a copper sequin dress, Sailor Brinkley Cook slipped into a strapless striped metallic minidress and Ashley Graham was sexy in a pink silk satin trench-style dress. Also at the party were models Lais Ribeiro, wearing a plunge-necked silver mini, and Robin Holzken who opted for a sheer lace long-sleeved gown.

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