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Polo player scores renovated house for $6.4 million

Posted On: 02-05-2015

By Darrell Hofheinz Daily News Staff Writer

Polo player and real estate investor Michael D. Bickford has ridden into the Estate Section, paying a recorded $6.4 million for Marilyn R. May’s five-bedroom house at 135 Gulfstream Road.

Built in 1930 and designed by noted society architect Gustav Maass, the Monterey-style house occupies about four-tenths of an acre two blocks south of Worth Avenue.

May and her late husband, businessman Robert P. May, carried out an extensive renovation in 2001, a couple of years after the New York couple bought the property for $1.75 million. The house has 8,384 square feet of living space, inside and out, along with a pair of two-car garages, an attached guest cottage and extensive loggias.

Listing agent Cristina Condon of Sotheby’s International Realty had priced it at $7.199 million when she acquired the listing in November 2013 and later dropped the asking to $6.95 million. But the house had been on the market even before that, priced by another agency at just under $8 million at the beginning of 2012.

“We added additions to each side of the house, doubling its size,” Marilyn May told the Shiny Sheet several months after her husband’s death in 2011. “A lot of planning and our heart went into this, and it turned out beautifully. It’s a slice of heaven.

”May today lives in Palm Beach Gardens, according to the deed recorded Tuesday.

Bickford was represented in the sale by Corcoran Group agent Ite Young, a longtime equestrian who worked for years selling horse-oriented properties in Wellington before turning her attention to Palm Beach.

Bickford founded Round Hill Capital, which has several offices in Europe and in Wilmington, Del., specializing in European real estate investments. Born in Greenwich, Conn., and married to Maria Paula Bickford, he has lived for years in London, where he has competed in major polo tournaments. He recently played alongside teammates Nacho Figueras and Jamie Morrison on the Ralph Lauren snow polo team.

Michael Bickford also has longtime family ties to Vermont and South Florida. He has lately focused his attention on Wellington, where he is planning to develop a private polo facility, said Young, who has known him since he was 18 years old.

Young said Bickford is among a growing number of buyers with an interest in both Wellington and the island — a market in which she specializes.

“He loved Palm Beach, the climate and the fact that he could have the horses 30 minutes away. He wanted to be near the ocean, where he will swim every day,” she said.


Source: Darrell Hofheinz, February 5, 2015, Palm Beach Daily News

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