Amazon-Gründer Jeff Bezos.
Michael M. Santiago/Getty, MarkHatfield/Getty, Tyler Le/BI
Jeff Bezos purchased four properties in and around an exclusive area of Seattle in 2019.
But neighbors say they have rarely seen Bezos, the world‘s second-richest person.
“He acts like he owns the neighborhood,” said one resident.
This is a machine translation of an article from our US colleagues at Business Insider. It was automatically translated and checked by a real editor.
Every spring, residents of Hunts Point, an affluent neighborhood outside of Seattle, gather for Cleanup Day. Hedge fund managers, tech titans and high-powered lawyers team up to plant trees, pull weeds and pick up trash. There’s a continental breakfast, a grilled lunch and a bouncy castle for the kids.
However, one resident is not present: Jeff Bezos, the Amazon founder and second richest man in the world.
“I’ve seen a billionaire pick up trash on Cleanup Day. Not Jeff Bezos,” one local resident told Business Insider.
Bezos bought three smaller houses nearby for his employees
Hunts Point is an affluent area of fewer than 400 residents east of Seattle. Billionaires and the business elite are no strangers here: former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and Costco co-founder James Sinegal are among the residents.
In 2019, a new billionaire came to town: Bezos. Then the richest person in the world and now the second richest, Bezos bought a $37.5 million waterfront property after his divorce from writer MacKenzie Scott. As Business Insider reported, Bezos also bought three smaller houses nearby for his employees.
Bezos announced earlier this year that he was leaving the Seattle area and moving his primary residence to Miami. The purchase of the Hunts Point homes was only reported this week, but in the four years the billionaire has spent on the exclusive peninsula, he has left an impression – especially in his absence, according to eight local residents who spoke with us Business Insider said.
A spokesman for Bezos did not respond to a request for comment.
Bezos’ $37.5 million mansion in Hunts Point offers sunset views over Lake Washington east of Seattle. Michael Walmsley
After his move, Bezos leaves behind a real estate empire of eight buildings in Seattle – five of which were previously unknown
In the tight-knit community, Bezos’ absence was noted at events such as Cleanup Day, the Fourth of July Party and fundraisers for local youth charity Bellevue Lifespring. (Although he did not attend the events, Bezos donated to Lifespring, said two residents involved with that charity.)
However, Bezos’ employees are fixtures in the neighborhood. His chef cooked the meals in a more modest house in the south of the peninsula and delivered them to Bezos’ primary residence in a “very cute” golf cart, according to one resident.
Bezos’ security guards lived in a house overlooking the neighborhood’s only entrance and exit. They were pleasant neighbors, said the same resident, who recalled them delivering misaddressed packages to her front door.
“We felt a lot safer knowing he had all these people guarding his property,” another resident said.
However, this added security has occasionally led to complications.
“He’s not a very good neighbor”
Twice his security guards called the police to report suspicious people who, after police questioning, turned out to be employees and contractors of other very rich people. That’s according to emergency call recordings obtained by Business Insider.
Their omnipresent presence can be overwhelming, a local resident told Business Insider. “Jeff Bezos acts like he owns Hunts Point,” it said.
Bezos, whose colossal gates are almost always closed according to the same resident, is rarely seen himself.
“He’s not a very good neighbor,” said one resident. “He’s so busy with all these national things.”
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He never seemed to live in Hunts Point full time, two neighbors said. Business Insider previously reported that he owns properties in Los Angeles, Miami, Washington, DC and Texas.
Bezos’s absence is all the more notable because his enormous wealth is not particularly extraordinary compared to many of his neighbors – some of whom are much more accessible.
“There are a lot of spectacular people who don’t behave spectacularly,” said one resident.
Steve Ballmer’s fortune, for example, is also in the three-digit billion range. His assets are owned by Bloomberg Billionaires Index estimated at $129 billion (approximately €120 billion), while Bezos’ net worth is estimated at $169 billion (approximately €157 billion).
Unlike Bezos, Ballmer’s gates are usually open, a resident said. His property is registered in his name and not in a maze of businesses, county records show. He’s also opening his own door, as Business Insider learned firsthand.
“There’s nothing to say,” Ballmer said, quickly closing the door when we knocked on his door to ask how he was getting along with his neighbor Bezos.
Read the original article Business Insider.
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