Late TV personality Anthony Bourdain, who died by suicide in June, was worth $1.2 million at the time of his death, according to legal filings revealed Thursday. (Some previous estimates pegged his net worth at upwards of $16 million.)
His will stated that the majority of his finances will be left to his 11-year-old daughter, Ariane Busia-Bourdain. His estranged wife, Ottavia Busia-Bourdain, is listed as the executor of his estate. The pair married in 2007 and separated in 2016, but their divorce was never finalized — legally, she’s still his next of kin.
Manhattan Surrogate’s Court documents indicate that Bourdain’s property includes $425,000 in savings and cash, $35,000 in brokerage money, $250,000 in personal property and $500,000 in “intangible property including royalties and residuals.”
The will was written in 2016, and since Ariane is a minor, the court needs to appoint a guardian to protect her funds until she’s of age to claim them herself.
Reports state that Bourdain bequeathed his accumulated frequent flyer miles to Busia, and asked her to “dispose of in accordance with what believes to have been my wishes.”
The same instructions were given regarding his multiple cars, furniture, clothing, books and household items. His documentation lists a mortgage worth $1.1 million, but it isn’t clear what property it’s in reference to.
Two weeks after his death, a toxicology report revealed that 61-year-old Bourdain had no drugs or alcohol in his system when he took his own life. (There was a slight trace of a non-narcotic medicine in a therapeutic dose, confirmed a French official.)
Bourdain’s profile soared in 1999 when The New Yorker published his article Don’t Eat Before Reading This, which he developed into the 2000 book, Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly. He was a host on the Food Network and the Travel Channel before joining CNN in 2013.
Bourdain told The New Yorker in 2017 that his idea for Parts Unknown, which was then in its 11th season, was travelling, eating and doing whatever he wanted. The show featured meals in both out-of-the-way restaurants and the homes of locals, providing what the magazine called “communion with a foreign culture so unmitigated that it feels practically intravenous.”
In 2016, when then-U.S. president Barack Obama travelled to Vietnam, Bourdain met him in Hanoi and dined over some noodles and grilled pork.
“‘Low plastic stool, cheap but delicious noodles, cold Hanoi beer.’ This is how I’ll remember Tony,” Obama tweeted shortly after Bourdain’s passing. “He taught us about food — but more importantly, about its ability to bring us together. To make us a little less afraid of the unknown. We’ll miss him.”
— With files from The Associated Press and Adam FriskFollow @CJancelewicz
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