Paris Hilton has insisted she really IS best friends with the winner of her new reality show.

The hotel heiress launched an American search for a new best friend in Paris Hilton’s My New BFF (Best Friend Forever) and around 300,000 Americans applied for the position.

Paris has now chosen the winner from the 16 women and two men selected, who competed in a series of challenges – including how to look hot on a rollercoaster and make a commercial for one of her fashion products – to win her friendship.

The 27-year-old socialite told Reuters: “The person who won is now my best friend. We hang out. Yeah, we’re really friends.

“We’ve been having barbecues and hanging out at the house. The winner and I have been pretty low-key so far, because it is top secret right now.”

The series airs on MTV on September 30 and Paris is about to begin filming a second series in London, where she will look for a British BFF.

She has a few tips for potential friend, advising: “In my life you can get photographed at any time. You never know when paparazzi are going to be hiding around the corner. So my friend needs to be paparazzi-ready.

“London is my favourite city in the world. I love their accents, their attitude. They are so real, they are not fake. I feel that everyone in LA wants to be famous but in London it’s more about business.”