Born June 9, 1975 in Mumbai, Maharashtra, India. She studied economics at Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts but gave up being an economic analyst for modeling and acting. She is frequently cited as one of the sexiest Bollywood actresses. She was ranked first on Rediff's list of 2008's Sexiest Actresses. Patel was also cited by Rediff as one of 2008's Sexiest Magazine Cover Girls.