Bill and Melinda Gates wanted to announce their divorce in March and she’d rented a $132,000-a-night private Caribbean island to hide away on afterwards with their kids – who are ‘furious’ with their father over the split – but their lawyers stopped them because they hadn’t yet finalized their settlement – so she went with the children anyway.
Anonymous sources cited by TMZ on Thursday claimed that Melinda fled with the couple’s three adult kids – Jennifer, 25, Rory, 21, and Phoebe, 18, to Calivigny Island, a private island in Grenada, which she rented for $132,000-a-night, to get away from the media after making the divorce announcement.
The kids were ‘very angry’ with their father, so he wasn’t invited, the sources say, without sharing why they were angry with him. When the lawyers stopped them from announcing, Melinda and the kids went anyway, according to the sources.
The claims hint for the first time that the split is acrimonious and also seem to confirm what has been widely speculated – that the pair reached a financial settlement before they announced their split or filed papers on Monday.
The island Melinda rented has 25 suites, including a main house called The Overhang with enough room for 18 guests and three beach cottages. There are Michelin star chefs, private trainers, yoga teachers, yachts and water sports.
It is owned by French millionaire Georges Cohen, who bought it for his wife Martine in 2000. The Kardashians have rented it in the past and Justin Bieber held his 21st birthday party there in 2015.
Anonymous sources cited by TMZ on Thursday claimed that Melinda fled with the couple’s three adult kids – Jennifer, 25, Rory, 21, and Phoebe, 18, to Calivigny Island, a private island in Grenada, which she rented for $132,000-a-night, to get away from the media after making the divorce announcement
The couple are pictured with their three kids in a 2019 family photo. The kids – Jennifer (center), Rory (right) and Phoebe (left) are now aged 25, 21 and 18. The kids were ‘very angry’ with their father, according to the sources
It’s unclear when exactly Melinda returned to the US. She and Bill were seen together during a virtual appearance on April 19.
Only one of the kids has spoken so far about the split. Jennifer, 25, took to Instagram to describe the recent months as a ‘challenging stretch’ for the entire family, but she didn’t expand.
They have not yet given a specific reason for the split. In court papers, Melinda described the marriage as ‘irretrievably broken’ after 27 years. For years, he has spent one year a weekend away with his ex-girlfriend, venture capitalist Ann Winblad, in a romantic oceanfront North Carolina home.
Melinda knew about the trips and gave them her blessing.
The island Melinda rented has 25 suites, including a main house called The Overhang with enough room for 18 guests and three beach cottages
Online, the island is described as a ‘private paradise’. The plan was for Melinda to flee after the pair went public with the divorce announcement
One of the three beach cottages on the island. The kids, all of whom are over 18, went with Melinda and their partners joined them
The island serves as an entire private resort. There are indoor and outdoor spas, Michelin star chefs and private trainers on hand
On Wednesday, a Chinese interpreter who worked for their charitable foundation denied internet rumors that she might be the reason for the split.
All that they said in their joint statement was that they could ‘no longer grow together as a couple’.
Together, the couple have a $130bn fortune and they did not have a prenup when they got married in 1994.
It remains unclear how they will divide their assets. On Monday, the day they announced the split, Bill’s investment company Cascade transferred $1.8bn in stocks to Melinda.
The pair’s divorce settlement hasn’t been finalized in court but they have agreed on a some of the terms of their separation. It’s likely that the pair will settle privately, and that the only glimpses into their division of assets will come from SEC filings about how many shares they own in public companies.
One such filing on Monday revealed that Bill gave Melinda more than 14million shares of the Canadian National Railway Company worth $1.5billion. He also gave her 2.9 million shares of AutoNation.
Jennifer Gates, 25, (left) responded to the news of her parents’ split in an Instagram post on Monday evening (right). She hinted at the acrimony, describing it as a ‘challenging stretch’ , but no other details have been given