Singing diva Mariah Carey was overwhelmed to receive a pair of $48,000 (GBP30,000) diamond earrings from Arab royal PRINCE HAJI AL-MUHTADEE BILLAH at her birthday party on Friday (31OCT03).

The Glitter actress splashed out $400,000 (GBP250,000) on the joint birthday and Halloween party at London's THE COLLECTION. Mariah attended dressed as a mermaid and was presented with plenty of presents, but none as exquisite as the earrings.

The prince, the son of the SULTAN OF BRUNEI, has a personal fortune of $48 billion - and not wanting to cause offence, Mariah put her new gems on at once.

One partygoer reports, "Mariah has always been known as one of the world's biggest divas, but everything's changed. I've never seen her happier, or friendlier."

For the lavish party, the BOY (I NEED YOU) singer insisted on rose petals carpeting the floor, and a strict no-smoking policy.

02/11/2003 13:58