Ekaterina Rybolovleva, 24, daughter of Russian billionaire Dmitry Rybolovlev is the new owner of the private Greek island of Skorpios. The island is situated in the Ionian Sea. Originally purchased in 1962 by Greek shipping tycoon Aristotle Onassis.
The Russian co-founder of potash producing company 'Uralkali' bought the Greek island for a reportedly $100 million from Onassis’ granddaughter Athina Onassis Roussel. The island is “a present” to the Russian heiress from her father in terms of a real estate investment. Rybolovleva has also purchased the nearby small island of Sparti. Onassis had bought the island for $10,000 back in 1962.
Although local authorities claim the purchase is most probably a long-term lease, since according to lawyers, Onassis’ will allegedly forbade the sale of the island. Ekaterina has already begun restoration works in view of her coming summer vacations.
Τhe high luxury resort is has entered a new era. Trucks are removing what’s left from the Onassis family on the island. The mayor of Meganisi, Eustathios Zavitsanos noted that he and the locals hope the new owners will show the required respect to the natural beauties of the island.
“Skorpios island is part of a island complex and famous for its long history of tranquility, simplicity and beauty. Many celebrities and famous people have visited the island in the past showing total respect of it. We do not want it now to turn into a catwalk or like Saint Tropez,” he said.
Ekaterina is the eldest daughter of Rybolovlev. Βorn in Russia but raised in Monaco and Switzerland, she has grown to be in the center of media attention despite being so young. Last year, while studying at Harvard, she made the front pages of magazines for purchasing one of the most prestigious and expensive apartments of Manhattan for $88 million. The new owner of Skorpios seem to have her love for horse-riding in common with Athina Onassis.
Some speculate that her father (Rybolovlev) prefers purchasing in guise of donations towards his two daughters, Ekaterina, 24, and Anna, 12, so that his wife cannot raise claims to his assets. Last year, the billionaire’s soon-to-be ex Elena Rybolovleva, wife of 24 years and mother of his two children (including Ekaterina), filed a suit in Manhattan Supreme Court centered around her daughter’s $88 million penthouse, alleging the purchase was done with “the specific intent of hiding and diverting his personal interest in the property.” Prior to that, she got a court order in Geneva to freeze his assets worldwide, and has been seeking transfer of ownership of Maison de L’Amitie in Fla.
According to foreign media reports, Rybolovleva is particularly exhilarated with the idyllic island, where Onassis and Jackie Kennedy were married in 1968, and is already planning on spending her time between New York, Russia and Greece.
Her father is ranked the 93rd richest man in the world.