Bill and Melinda Gates’ divorce will be the largest split of assets since Jeff Bezos and wife MacKenzie split in mid-2019.
The Gateses are worth an estimated $ 130 billion, making them the fourth richest people in the world, after Bezos, Elon Musk and French luxury goods owner Bernard Arnault.
Their realm includes homes in five states; a fleet, including a rare $ 2 million Porsche; an art collection that includes the $ 30 million Da Vinci Codex that Gates purchased at auction; and a range of private jets.
Gates is also the largest private owner of farmland in the United States, with 242,000 acres spread across 18 different states.
When Bezos’s divorce was finalized in July 2019, she received $ 38.3 billion worth of Amazon stock, making her the richest woman in the world.
Like the Gates, they had been married for decades: the Bezoses 25 years and the Gateses 27 years.
MacKenzie Bezos had also been deeply involved in the early days of their company, Amazon, just as Melinda Gates had a senior role at Microsoft.
The Gateses, who have three children – Jennifer, 25; Phoebe, 18; and Rory, 21 – have their primary residence in Washington State, on the outskirts of Seattle.
Bill and Melinda Gates, photographed November 2019 with Jennifer, Phoebe and Rory
Bill and Melinda Gates, in an August 2018 Instagram photo
They also have properties in California, Florida, Wyoming, and Massachusetts.
Plus they have a private jet and an amazing art collection. He also has a fleet of fast cars.
The couple met when she started at Microsoft in 1987 – he founded the company in 1975.
The two were married on January 1, 1994.
In 2000, they founded The Gates Foundation, dedicated to helping some of the world’s poorest people through initiatives such as eradicating polio, reducing malaria and HIV / AIDS, and investing in sanitation and financial resources. systems for people without. They have put enormous amounts of their own money into the Foundation, making it one of the world’s largest philanthropic organizations.
In 2010, they co-founded The Giving Pledge with Warren Buffett and pledged to give away most of their fortune.
Their three children were reported to receive $ 10 million each – a fraction of their parents’ fortunes.
The Queen bestows his honorary knighthood on Bill Gates at Buckingham Palace in 2005
Melinda Gates will receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom in November 2016
But despite The Giving Pledge, they keep plenty of assets to be divided between them.
Chief among them is their main family home known as Xanadu 2.0.
The 66,000-square-foot mansion overlooks Lake Washington in Medina, 9 miles outside of downtown Seattle – where The Gates Foundation is headquartered.
Gates bought the lot in 1988 for $ 2 million, but spent seven years building his dream home – for $ 63 million.
The construction along the picturesque lake angered some neighbors, The Washington Post reported at the time – so Gates responded with free car washes and made his construction crew available to help with small projects in nearby homes.
The house is now worth an estimated $ 125 million.
“I wanted craftsmanship, but nothing flashy,” Gates wrote in his book The Road Ahead, which was written from the guest house while the main building was being built.
“I wanted a home that could accommodate advanced, evolving technology, but in an unobtrusive way that makes it clear that technology is the servant, not the master.”
The house of the Gates family contains a garage for 30 cars and a living area with 20 rooms
The house has an indoor outdoor pool with an underwater music system and floor fossil designs, plus an old palm leaf fossil print behind the diving board.
In the five-acre lot, there is an artificial stream filled with salmon and cutthroat trout, and a beach with sand that some say was imported from the Caribbean.
Inside the seven-bedroom mansion, said to have 18 bathrooms, is an Art Deco home theater with 20 seats and a 1,000-square-foot dining room with 24 seats.
For larger gatherings, the 2,300-square-meter lobby can accommodate 150 people for dinner, or 200 for a cocktail party.
The 2,100-square-foot library contains two secret revolving bookcases, one of which contains a beam.
A special nook has been built to display one of Gates’ most prized possessions: a scientific notebook kept by Leonardo da Vinci in the early 16th century called the Codex.
Gates bought it at auction in 1994 for $ 30 million.
Engraved on the ceiling is a quote from The Great Gatsby: “He had come a long way to this blue lawn, and his dream must have seemed so close that he could hardly miss it.”
There are four rare copies of the book in his library, The Washington Post reported.
Guests of the property, according to Seattle under control, give a pin to wear on arrival, with sensors.
Depending on their preferences, the temperature, music and lighting in the house change.
Each room has its own touchpad to control the room environment.
“ I have a nice house, ” Gates said in a February 2019 “ Ask Me Anything ” forum on Reddit.
‘It contains a trampoline room that seems a bit over the top, but my kids love to use it to get rid of their excess energy.
“I’m not sure how guilty to feel when I’m in a great house.”
It’s not his only great house.
The Gateses also own a $ 59 million ranch in Wellington, Florida – an area known for equestrian sports that will appeal to his eldest daughter Jennifer, a talented horsewoman.
Jennifer Gates can be seen in 2009 at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in Wellington
Jennifer Gates on Pumped Up Kicks takes part in the Longines Global Champions Tour in Chantilly, France in 2017
Wellington, described by The real deal As the winter capital of equestrian sports, it is the seasonal playground for the families of a number of billionaires – Michael Bloomberg, the late Steve Jobs, the Campbell’s Soup family and celebrities whose children compete in horseback riding competitions.
The family also owns the Irma Lake Lodge, a $ 9 million, 492 acre ranch in Wyoming, Buffalo Bill, named after his eldest daughter when he settled on the site in 1902.
Gates bought the property in 2009.
According to the broker’s description, obtained by Insider“The ranch is adjacent to Shoshone National Forest and near Washakie Wilderness, giving this property a backyard of more than three million acres of contiguous wilderness and woodland areas.”
In addition to the 15,000-square-foot home with its five bedrooms and three bathrooms, there is a guest house, caretaker’s house, dairy cabin, Buffalo Bill stable, and a rustic island cabin in the middle of Lake Irma.
On a knoll is Buffalo Bill’s original three-room hunting lodge – unsuitable for habitation and preserved in its original state.
The country is home to moose, elk, mule deer, bighorn sheep, bears, cougars, wolves, bobcats, wolverines, and lynx.
The couple own two homes in California – the 228-acre Rancho Paseana, which he bought for $ 18 million from diet queen Jenny Craig in September 2014.
It includes a racecourse, an orchard and five barns with space for 50 horses.
He bought another $ 43 million real estate in California, near San Diego, closing the deal in April 2020.
A photo of the inside of the house that the Gateses bought near San Diego for $ 43 million
The patio of the Gateses’ San Diego home, which they purchased in April 2020
The oceanfront house, above, is seen with umbrellas on the patio
The six-bedroom, four-bath, 5,800-square-foot luxury home was sold by Madeleine Pickens, a former wife of billionaire oil baron T. Boone Pickens.
According to the list of details obtained by The real deal, the house is known as a landmark of the city and is considered ‘one of the most prominent modern coastal beach houses on the west coast’.
It has 36 feet of private ocean front.
In addition to his five houses, Gates has quietly built up a huge agricultural portfolio.
The 65-year-old’s largest property includes 69,071 acres in Louisiana, 47,927 acres in Arkansas, 25,750 acres in Arizona, 20,588 acres in Nebraska, and 16,097 acres in Washington State.
But even with its big new farms, Gates is still not in the top 100 private landowners in the US – when we consider owners of all types of land, not just agriculture.
The title for largest land holdings overall goes to American businessman John Malone, president of Liberty Media, who owns 2.2 million acres.
Bill Gates owns 1.37 percent of Microsoft’s outstanding stock, which is worth more than $ 26 billion, according to CNBC.
He stepped down from Microsoft’s board in March 2020, but remains as a technology advisor to CEO Satya Nadella.
He also makes investments through his private Gates Ventures office.
In 2015, Melinda Gates founded a new organization called Pivotal Ventures, an independent executive office. The idea was to enable her to pursue ideas that might not fit within the structure of the Gates Foundation.