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Jet Set Icon and Marbella’s Beloved Princess Ira von Fürstenberg Passes Away at 83

February 20, 2024
Jet Set Icon and Marbella's Beloved Princess Ira von Fürstenberg Passes Away at 83 - ira 2 scaled 1 - Local Events and Festivities - Ira von Fürstenberg

Italian Socialite and Actress, Ira von Fürstenberg, Passes Away at 83

Ira von Fürstenberg, the Italian socialite and actress known for her rebellious spirit and significant role in popularising the Costa del Sol, has passed away at the age of 83. The aristocratic actress breathed her last on Sunday at her residence in Rome. Born in 1940 as Virginia Carolina Theresa Pancrazia Galdina zu Fürstenberg, she was the daughter of German prince Tassilo von Fürstenberg and Clara Agnelli, the granddaughter of Fiat’s founder.

Early Life and Marriage to Prince Alfonso of Hohenlohe-Langenburg

At the tender age of 15, Ira married Prince Alfonso of Hohenlohe-Langenburg, who was 31 at the time and the godson of Alfonso XIII. This marriage solidified her status within the ‘Jet Set’ elite, and she owned homes in Ronda, Austria, London, Madrid, and Rome. The couple had two children, Christoph, known as Kiko, who died under suspicious circumstances in a Bangkok prison in 2006, and Hubertus, a former Olympic skier.

Establishment of the Marbella Club

In 1954, Ira and Alfonso established the Marbella Club, a luxurious hotel that put Marbella and the Costa del Sol at the forefront of the ‘Jet Set’ scene. Ira mingled with fellow wealthy elites, including German millionaire Gunter Sachs, French activist-actress Brigitte Bardot, and members of the Spanish aristocracy. She described Marbella as a wild party where attendees would mingle with different people every night.

Controversial Divorce and Second Marriage

After six years of marriage, Ira left Alfonso in a controversial move and started a romance with Italian-Brazilian playboy Francisco ‘Baby’ Pignatari, whom she referred to as the love of her life. Their marriage lasted for four years.

Career in Acting and Later Life

Following her second divorce, Ira pursued a career in acting, appearing in over twenty films and becoming one of the leading sex symbols of the 1970s. She continued to live her life in a flamboyant and idiosyncratic manner until her death.

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