What the onetime romance novelist (“Conglomerate,” 1985) depicts as an important love story had a plot twist in 2015, when the prince’s second spouse, Princess Ludmilla Boncompagni Ludovisi of St. Petersburg, Russia, started foreclosures proceedings on the villa, as a result of her former husband had stopped paying her alimony.
That was no shock, in keeping with Prince Bante, one of many three sons from Prince Nicolò’s first marriage. He described his father as a drunk wastrel who chased ladies, squandered a fortune and bought off household treasures to pay for the minimal of important renovations. He refers to his father’s widow as Ms. Carpenter, a “gold digger” who lives within the “peasant” quarters of the villa — and far, a lot worse.
Prince Bante mentioned he and his brothers, who’re additionally disputing the inheritance amongst themselves, grew to become satisfied that Princess Rita didn’t have their father’s finest pursuits, or longevity, at coronary heart, and that she let him drink himself to loss of life in 2018. Princess Rita pointed to run-ins with the legislation by one brother and a fraud conviction in opposition to one other. She referred to as Prince Bante a “borderline persona” who as soon as laid fingers on her, an accusation he denies.
For the princess, the previous few years have been a relentless battle.
In December 2020, as she recovered at dwelling from a fall that broke her kneecap and arm, the stepsons, joined by Italian Cultural Ministry officers, entered for a random inspection of the villa, which is an Italian cultural treasure. They discovered a leak and required that or not it’s instantly repaired, prompting the princess, she mentioned, to name the restaurateur Nello Balan, namesake of the Manhattan scorching spot Nello’s, to whom she has been romantically linked. (“We’re very, superb mates,” she mentioned coyly.)
She considers the inspection tantamount to a house invasion.