Ira von Fürstenberg, Jet-Setting Princess and Actress, Dies at 83

Ira von Fürstenberg, who came as close as one can get to having it all as an Italian-born princess descended from Charlemagne, an heiress to the Fiat fortune, a Vogue model, a big-screen ingénue and a globe-trotting bon vivant, died on Feb. 19 at her home in Rome. She was 83.

Her son, Hubertus von Hohenlohe, said she died after breaking her ribs and perforating her lungs in a domestic accident.

Blending the gilded privilege of the old-world European aristocracy with the élan of the midcentury film and fashion peerage, Ms. von Fürstenberg seemingly defined the term “jet setter,” bouncing between homes in Rome, London, Paris, Madrid and the shores of Lake Geneva.

“My only real home is on airplanes,” she said. “I spend so much time going from country to country that my children suspect that I’m really a flight attendant.”

She shared a surname with the renowned fashion designer, Diane von Fürstenberg, who married the princess’s fashion designer brother, Egon, in 1969. “When I first met Egon, she was the famous sister,” Diane told Women’s Wear Daily last month. “She had gotten married in Venice and was a movie star.”

Ms. von Fürstenberg in Monte Carlo in 2007. Descended from Charlemagne and the founder of Fiat, she lived a lavish life, including as an actress, model, artist and fashion executive.Credit…Hubertus von Hohenlohe
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