Melinda Gates reportedly rented $132,000-a-night private island to avoid media following divorce announcement

Couple reportedly planned to announce divorce in March

Chelsea Ritschel
New York
Thursday 06 May 2021 16:43 BST
(Getty / Calivigny Island)
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Melinda Gates reportedly rented a private $132,000-a-night island so that she and her family would be able to avoid media attention amid her divorce from her husband of 27 years, Bill Gates.

The longtime couple announced their decision to end their marriage on Monday, writing in a joint statement at the time: “After a great deal of thought and a lot of work on our relationship, we have made the decision to end our marriage.”

However, sources told TMZ that the couple had actually planned to make the announcement in March, at which point Melinda rented Calivigny Island in Grenada.

According to the outlet’s sources, the plan was for Melinda and the couple’s three children, as well as their significant others, to stay on the island, which Bill was reportedly not invited to.

The 80-acre island, which offers guests 25 “magnificent suites and cottages,” is reached by a five-minute boat ride from Grenada.

As for why the couple delayed announcing the separation, the sources told TMZ that lawyers for both Bill and Melinda were trying to “hash out a divorce settlement,” but that Melinda decided to go to anyway.

Sources also said that the family has taken Melinda’s side for the most part, and that it is not a “friendly split”.

On the day they announced their intentions to divorce, the Microsoft founder’s investment firm transferred $1.8bn in stock to his estranged wife, according to Bloomberg.

The philanthropist, who is the fourth-richest person in the world, has a net worth of $124bn, according to Forbes.

While the couple, who share children Jennifer, 25, Rory, 21, and Phoebe, 18, have not shared any additional statements following the divorce announcement, their eldest daughter shared a statement of her own, in which she asked for privacy while the family navigates “the next phase of our lives”.

“By now, many of you have heard the news that my parents are separating,” the 25-year-old wrote on Instagram. “It’s been a challenging stretch of time for our whole family.

“I’m still learning how to best support my own process and emotions as well as family members at this time, and am grateful for the space to do so.”

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