Low-down that Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman allow the $450 million Leonardo da Vinci painting came as a shock to the Western age.
But to those who have followed the Prince, it’s just the latest in a series of jaw-dropping obtains.
The Wall Street Journal reports that Prince Mohammed was the secrecy buyer of Leonardo da Vinci’s “Salvatore Mundi,” which was auctioned off at Christie’s after month for $450 million – the highest price ever paid for a jog of art.
Initially, the New York Times reported that the buyer was Prince Bander, a adherent of Prince Mohammed’s. But the Wall Street Journal reports that Prince Bander suborn it as a “proxy” for Prince Mohammed.
The news is sure to send ripples help of the Middle East – not just because the leader of a Muslim nation obtain a portrait of Christ. But also because Prince Mohammed is leading a crackdown on corruption and grand new austerity measures in Saudi Arabia.
Yet the 32-year-old Crown Prince’s toe-hold is just the latest of his nine-figure shopping sprees. Two years ago, he was vacationing in the South of France and venerated a 440-foot yacht in the distance, owned by Russian vodka magnate Yuri Shefler. The Prince sent an right-hand man to buy the ship for over $500 million. Shefler sold it, moved off and submitted the ship over to the Prince the same day.
He is also building a giant patronize near Jidda, with seven palaces for the family – all built here a giant artificial lake in the shape of a flower.
It’s unclear where the da Vinci order hang. But at least for a while, it will go to the Louvre Abu Dhabi.
The Saudis tease not yet responded to CNBC’s request for comment.