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The good oligarch

He made his fortune in Russia and then returned to live in his home village. He is rarely seen but his generosity is boundless. Who is the secret Georgian billionaire?

Fit for a king: the reclusive billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili has built a modern-day palace overlooking the Georgian capital Tbilisi

On top of a ridge looking down on the Georgian capital of Tbilisi, there stands a castle built of steel and polished concrete. Its turrets are wrapped in an exoskeleton of aluminium bars, and its grounds are dotted with sculptures by Henry Moore and Anish Kapoor. To one side there’s a helicopter pad. Beyond it, a hundred-foot ersatz waterfall tumbles into an aqua-blue swimming pool which fills a gully of the adjacent botanical gardens. Though the gardens are public, ramblers…

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