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Victor Pinchuk's 50th Birthday Party

Party man Pinchuk (R) tends to business, not pleasure, as he and former International Monetary Fund head Dominique Strauss-Kahn (L) pose in the city of Kiev.

© Frolova Maria/ITAR-TASS Photo/Corbis

You may never have heard of Victor Pinchuk, but the Ukrainian is a steel magnate, media mogul and billionaire who was named one of the world's most influential people by Time magazine in 2010 [source: Victor Pinchuk Foundation]. He's also infamous for throwing himself a $6.6 million birthday party when he turned the big 5-0 in December 2010 [source: Bost].

The party was held at Courchevel, a French ski resort frequented by the world's über-wealthy, and, recently, especially the über-wealthy hailing from the former Soviet Union. About 300 guests were invited to Pinchuk's festivities, including (according to word on the street) President Bill Clinton and singer-actress Christina Aguilera. Famed French chef Alain Ducasse prepared the eats, which were accompanied by champagne, the finest vodka and vintage wines. For entertainment, nothing would do but a performance by Cirque du Soleil, flown in from Canada. Topping off the evening was a major fireworks display [source: Willsher].

Hopefully, Pinchuk and his guests had a good time. News of the pricey bash was splashed all over the media, outraging many French residents, who thought it was in poor taste given the dire economic conditions in the country at the time [source: Bost].

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