Georgina Bloomberg Reigns
BY MICHAEL BRAVERMAN
PHOTOGRAPHS BY STEPHAN WüRTH
Long-sleeve dress, Valentino ($4,490). 747 Madison Ave., NYC. Earrings ($1,200) and pavé ring ($250), Kara Ackerman. Gloria Jewel, 2491 Main St., Bridgehampton. Boots, J.Crew-at-the-Beach ($265). 14 Main St., East Hampton.
|»Slideshow: Behind-the-scenes photos from our cover shoot|
Georgina Bloomberg leads a typical life for a professional rider who trains and sells horses. She is participating in this year’s Hampton Classic, has Olympic aspirations and runs a respected horse farm. This last fact is quite normal until you consider her age—just 28 years old. In spite of these accomplishments, she is nearly always portrayed in the media as an “heiress,” one of those peculiarly old-fashioned words that, when deployed, overpowers all the finer points of one’s personality.
Is this really a more compelling or accurate representation of Bloomberg than, say, rider or show jumper—or for that matter, author? Does it really tell us anything about her other than the obvious fact that her father is extremely wealthy (according to Forbes, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is the 10th richest person in the United States)? Of course, the money had to be there to finance Gotham North, her 20-acre horse farm in North Salem, New York, but Bloomberg is hardly just coasting along on family wealth. She is out there in the rings working, earning her own income, building a business and creating a life.
“I earn money from show winnings and from my sponsors,” says Bloomberg. “The real money in the sport comes from buying young horses, working and developing them, and selling them at a profit. It’s hard to say goodbye to a horse you have worked with and formed a bond with, but to make it as a pro, it’s a must.”
However, according to the young equestrienne, there is also a pleasure in the parting. “It’s really satisfying when you can produce a successful horse and then watch it go on to another rider and do well,” she says.
A Rider's Life
Bloomberg typically trains her eight horses (she currently owns six horses fully and shares in two others) from 7:30 in the morning to early afternoon, focusing on what is needed for their next show and developing young horses to a standard at which they can be sold. The balance of the day is spent in the gym and doing laps in the pool “to stay as fit and strong as possible” for her demanding physical work.
As a young rider, Bloomberg received encouragement from both her parents (her mother is the mayor’s first wife, Susan Brown), but no one could have predicted how far she would go. “I fell in love with the competition side of this sport,” says Bloomberg. “I love my horses and I love riding, but the showing is what keeps me going and made me want to make this a business. Going pro was something I wasn’t completely sure of, but when my first sponsorship offer came in, I made the decision. Supporting myself is something I work really hard to do and take great pride in, and if I was going to stay in the sport, I wanted to be doing it at the top level and to be able to pay my own way as much as possible.”
Styling by Amanda Weiner
Makeup by Elisa Flowers for Dior Beauty at ba-reps.com
Hair by Damian Monzillo for Redken at BA-REPS.com
ON THE COVER: Strapless gown, J. Mendel ($5,990). Hirshleifer’s, Americana Manhasset, 2060 Northern Blvd. Earrings, Kara Ackerman ($1,200). Gloria Jewel, 2491 Main St., Bridgehampton. Cuff, Stella Flame ($3,940). London Jewelers, 2 Main St., East Hampton. Clear topaz ring, Pomellato ($2,100). London Jewelers, 47 Main St., Southampton