Society

Millionaire Art Collector Dies, Leaves Big Tips For His Favorite Waitresses

| by Lisa Fogarty
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A millionaire art collector who died last August in New York City left two extremely generous tips in his will to his favorite waitresses.

Robert "King of Ming" Ellsworth, 85, an Asian-art collector who was worth $200 million, reportedly left two servers at Donohue's Steak House in Manhattan $50,000 each, reports the New York Post. For decades, Ellsworth had been a regular customer at the popular restaurant and had eaten most of his meals there, according to staff, but he didn't know the servers' names and referrred to them in his will as "Maureen at Donohue's" and "Maureen-at-Donohue's Niece Maureen."

The recipients of the five-figure tips are Maureen Donohue-Peters, 53, and her niece, 28-year-old Maureen Barrie.

"I was shocked," Donohue-Peters told the New York Post. "I just couldn't believe it. I didn't expect anything." 

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Ellsworth, who is considered the world's wealthiest Asian-art collector, never had children and is reportedly leaving most of his fortune -- which includes a 20-room mansion on Park Avenue -- to Masahiro Hashiguchi, his live-in chef and companion for more than 40 years. 

When he visited Donohue's for lunch with his personal assistant, Ellsworth often ordered a grilled cheese with bacon. He would then return for dinner with friends and order a sirloin steak. Both meals would always include a glass of Jim Beam Bourbon. No matter what the bill came out to , staff say he always tipped 20 percent. 

"He was a wonderful man and a dear friend," Barrie said.

Restaurant servers have received a great deal of recognition in the news lately, after several have reported receiving big tips from loyal and/or compassionate customers. A waitress at a rooftop bar and restaurant in New York City was shocked to find a 1400% tip on a $30 bill Friday night from a customer she didn't know, reports Opposing Views. After ordering a few beers, sliders, and fries, the customer tipped his server "Johanna" $414 on a $30 check.

Sources: New York Post, Daily MailOpposing Views

Photo Credit: New York Post, Quinn Dombrowski/Flickr