The Hills Girls Party in N.Y.C.
"It's cool to hear the reactions," Conrad told PEOPLE at the bash, which featured a performance by Mariah Carey that had the show's stars grooving in their seats and singing along. "It's funny because it's your real life, then they edit it into a show and you see laugh at it!" (The clearly 'Team Lauren' crowd did more than laugh -- guests booed when her rival Heidi Montag appeared on screen, and cheered for Conrad's sometime love interests Brody Jenner and Stephen Colletti.)
So what's in store for this season? "The show is always about relationships and some will become strained," says Conrad. "And we have some new friendships that are interesting. And unexpected." As for her love life, she adds, "I'm single. I do have a few crushes but, you know, just fun ones."
For her pal Whitney Port, the show will bring new beginnings. "The biggest one for me is my job," she says. (She goes from working for Teen Vogue to working at fashion PR company People's Revolution). "It's all about changes this season," show creator Adam Divello says. "There are a lot of surprises."
As for their portrayal on screen, Port jokes about her lack of personal storylines: "I come off as basically just the listener. But as much as I can be that on a day-to-day basis, I also have a lot going on -- but I've chosen not to share it. I'm not boring!" And Conrad? "The biggest misconception about me is that I'm not as pouty as I am on the show!" she says with a laugh. "I come off as always feeling sorry for myself. But I have fun, too!" --Rennie Dyball
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