SAINT JOHN – A company led by Robert Irving, co-CEO of J.D. Irving, Limited, recently paid $11.5-million for an estate in Florida close to ones owned by people like Bill Gates and Billy Joel, according to documents accessed by a U.S. real estate publication called The Real Deal.
According to the Warranty Deed, the property was purchased by Championship Properties Limited Partnership, which lists Championship Properties Inc. as the General Partner. Robert Irving is the Director, CEO and president of Championship Properties and Jill Irving is the vice-president.
While the news of Irving’s purchase of a property in close proximity to the likes of Bill Gates and Billy Joel is noteworthy, it was even more intriguing to find out why. It turns out they all have a shared passion for horses and competitive equestrian events.
And Wellington, Florida, is the place to be for equestrian activities. The village, not far inland from West Palm Beach, hosts the annual Winter Equestrian Festival and is mainly made up of large estates with horse stables, fields and equestrian rings (easily confirmed by looking at Google’s satellite map of the area).
In a phone conversation with Huddle, Keith Larsen, the Miami-based reporter at The Real Deal, said the area is populated almost exclusively by people interested in equestrian activities and polo.
As New Brunswick equestrian fans well know, Irving’s wife Jill is an accomplished rider and competed in the Adequan Global Dressage Festival in Wellington in 2017.
Irving himself owns Windhaven Farm in Moncton and was named the 2017 Dressage Owner of the Year Award by Equestrian Canada in recognition of the consistent and impressive results achieved by the farm’s elite dressage horses.
Irving’s new 10.7-acre property includes stables, fields, an equestrian ring and a five-bedroom, six-and-a-half bathroom house that was constructed in 2010.
Joel bought an estate in the area because his fourth wife, Alexis Roderick, is an experienced equestrian.
The photographs in this story are from the property listing on Zillow.