Celebrating something, Rupert? Murdoch jets off with a woman tipped to become his FIFTH wife – and eight cases of his own vineyard’s wine

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Written By Maya Cantina
  • Rupert Murdoch is yet to confirm a relationship with Elena Zhukova
  • The former boss of Fox News appeared to be in high spirits for the flight

Many people like to pack their favourite items when they go away on holiday such as a jar of Marmite, – or even their favourite teddy bear.

But when you’re billionaire Rupert Murdoch jetting off with your latest love interest, the essentials include eight crates of wine from your own private vineyard.

Our exclusive pictures – the first of the former News Corp boss since he officially left the role three weeks ago – show the 92-year-old with his new companion, retired scientist Elena Zhukova, 66, at an airport for private jets in LA.

The pair have yet to confirm a relationship, but were first spotted together just four months after the tycoon broke off his engagement to dental hygienist turned radio host Ann Lesley Smith.

The trip will no doubt fuel speculation that Zhukova – the mother of Roman Abramovich’s ex-wife Dasha – could be next in line for a ring from the mogul.

Our exclusive pictures – the first of the former News Corp boss since he officially left the role three weeks ago – show the 92-year-old with his new companion, retired scientist Elena Zhukova, 66, at an airport for private jets in LA

When you're billionaire Rupert Murdoch jetting off with your latest love interest, the essentials include eight crates of wine from your own private vineyard

When you’re billionaire Rupert Murdoch jetting off with your latest love interest, the essentials include eight crates of wine from your own private vineyard

The former boss of Fox News appeared to be in high spirits for the flight – and little wonder. Along with their luggage, the couple were travelling with eight crates of wine from his Moraga Estate in Bel Air – the only vineyard in LA. The cheapest bottle is £73.

Another bag unloaded from the car contained a brown handwritten label featuring his initials, which read: ‘KRM medication’ – his full name is Keith Rupert Murdoch.

The billionaire has enjoyed a long string of back-to-back relationships over the decades. Since his first marriage in 1956, to fellow Australian Patricia Booker, a flight attendant, he has spent just three years without a ring on his finger. 

His second marriage to journalist Anna Torv lasted 32 years. But 17 days after their divorce in 1999, he wed media executive Wendi Deng. They were married for 14 years. The tycoon wed model and actress Jerry Hall in 2016 but they divorced in August last year after Murdoch ended the marriage by email.

By March 2023, he had proposed for a fifth time to Ann Lesley Smith. But by April, it had been called off. It is unknown whether she kept or returned the £2 million, 11-carat diamond engagement ring he gave her.

Soon after, rumours about Zhukova began to swirl and the pair were spotted together, cruising the Mediterranean in a superyacht. It may have been smooth sailing then but whether she is in line to be the fifth Mrs Murdoch remains to be seen.

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