Lisa Vanderpump Talks 'Dancing With the Stars' Challenges, Marriage and Putting Her Kids to Work

PHOTO: After making a splash on Bravos "Real Housewives of Beverly Hills," Lisa Vanderpump, shown here with her dog Giggy, went on to launch "Vanderpump Rules" and now will be a contestant on "Dancing With the Stars."PlayJuju Chang/ABC
WATCH Lisa Vanderpump: Inside the World of the Rich and Famous

Opulent doesn't begin to describe Lisa Vanderpump's lifestyle. She has been extraordinarily rich for a very long time.

But it was only after she crossed swords with other wealthy "Real Housewives of Beverly Hills" that Vanderpump became both rich and famous.

"I would be lying if I didn't say that every celebrity aspect of [being a reality TV star] isn't beneficial," she said. "For instance, I have written a book ... before I had a book offer. It's the same book I could have written two or three years ago, but nobody would have bought it.

"I'm the same person I was three years ago," Vanderpump added. "Before I opened my life, and it's just a plethora of opportunities."

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She is a wife and mother of two. She is also 52 and proud of it, elegant and dignified. So why the urge to strip down to a leotard and jump at the chance to be on ABC's "Dancing With the Stars"?

"I just thought, 'Wow, it's such a challenge,'" Vanderpump said. "There are moments that I thought, 'Have I lost my mind?'"

Vanderpump's professional dance partner is a newcomer to the "Dancing With the Stars" cast, Russian-born dancer Gleb Savchencko.

"She danced 30 years ago and in school, right [but] she has no dance experience. She's never done the ballroom dancing," Savchencko said. "It's a bit challenging for her, but we're just taking it step-by-step and trying to improve."

"I've been stretched in places that I didn't know existed," Vanderpump said, laughing.

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It's her witty, often self-deprecating humor that may have boosted her popularity on "Real Housewives." But it's her shrewd business savvy as owner of more than 20 restaurants located in London and Los Angeles that led her to yet another opportunity: To be a TV producer.

Vanderpump cast her restaurant staff in another Bravo reality TV series titled "Vanderpump Rules," which she said is not staged.

"They have worked for me for three, four, five years, all of them," she said. "They were not kind of planted in there, but I knew this group of kids and following their lives, because I saw it on a daily basis, would be fascinating television."

And she is not afraid to enforce her rules and crack down on bad behavior.

"See this foot," she said pointing to her hot pink pump. "It really lands firmly up their behinds on many occasions."

WATCH: Inside Lisa Vanderpump's Posh Closet

Vanderpump is a hard-charging, hard-working woman, even though she could easily afford to just lounge around, doting on her precious Pomeranian, Giggy, who was also made famous by the "Real Housewives" series and has a massive Twitter following in his own right.

But there also is a loving wife of 30 years hidden under all that glamorous hair and make-up. Vanderpump is married to businessman and restaurateur Ken Todd. While she has joked in the past about her "sexless" marriage on television, Vanderpump said in reality, that's not true at all.

"I think it's kind of a British humor to deflect the kinds of questions about our sex life," she said. "But clearly my husband would want it 10 times more than he is getting it. What man wouldn't?"

Vanderpump said she is putting raising her two kids ahead of her ambitions in show business. Vanderpump starred in the campy music video "Poison Arrow" sung by the 80's British pop group ABC and who could forget her guest appearance on "Baywatch Nights?"

"I think I made the choice to kind of give it up before it gave me up," she said. "It was fun. I don't think that will be on my epitaph."

Vanderpump said the meaningful moments in her life have been raising her daughter Pandora and her son Max. She said she does not give her children handouts and strongly believes they need to learn how to make their own money. Both Pandora and Max wait tables at her restaurant.

"They have to work, and then they will be rewarded," Vanderpump said. "I think if you spoil them, it's simple -- they end up spoiled."

She seems like she has it all figured out. When it comes to dancing in front of millions of people, Vanderpump believes there is no way she can lose.

"I have no idea whether I'll just forget the routine, freeze, fall on my ass," she said. "But, you know what? If it all goes horribly wrong, which it possibly might, I'm a great businesswoman. I've been a great wife, good mother and a lousy dancer."