“The village of Wellington”, as it is officially called, is a gem of a place for lovers of pure equestrian lifestyle and classy adventure. It has also become a great place to buy horse property, or lookout interestingly for a farm for sale.
This uniquely attractive community is located in the Palm Beach County of Florida, USA. Near west of West Palm Beach, Wellington, Florida is not really a village by any US standards. Rather, it is internationally recognized as one of the world’s top equestrian destinations.
In fact, many people across the globe call it “The Equestrian Capital” of the world, and well deservedly so. The premier South Florida Hometown community is very popular for its attractive neighborhoods, quality schools, parks, polo, and equestrian interests.
The Wellington community has a unique mix of opulent palm beaches, a truly beautiful equestrian lifestyle, numerous high-end shops on its streets, an interesting history, etc. All these and a host of other things make this area a must visit for many annually.
Let’s break down the factors that make Wellington, Florida such a remarkable center of attraction especially for real estate investors, equestrian sports lovers and other visitors.
An accountant named Charles Oliver Wellington from Massachusetts bought about 18.000 acres (73 Km3) of the swampland of central Palm Beach County. This was in the 1950’s and he named the property ‘Flying Cow Ranch’. He chose ‘Flying’ because he was also an aviator and C.O.W were the initials of his names.
With U.S Route 441 in the east and Florida State Road 80 (commonly known as Southern Boulevard) in the north, this area would later become ‘The Wellington Village’
After Mr. Wellington died in 1959, the property was inherited by his son, Roger. Many ensuing sales and leasing arrangements led to the area gaining global recognition as arguably the largest strawberry patch worldwide. Later in 1972, Wellington, Florida was born as a planned unit development after approval by the Palm Beach County.
The proposal was led by the Acme Drainage District who went on to supervise the first projects which included;
- Construction of a country club
- Construction of a golf course
- Development of Lake Wellington (150 acres)
- The building of residential neighborhoods
The project was acquired by Gould Florida Inc. in the late 70’s. They constructed the International Polo Club Palm Beach as well as the iconic Aero Club which features a private airpark.
Wellington was incorporated as a village by a vote in December 1995, becoming the 37th municipality in Palm Beach with about 28.000 residents. With 50.000 full-time residents today, the area has grown to become a renowned international hub for equestrian sports and a great place to consider looking at horse property, homes, or farms for sale
ART AND CULTURE
The arts and cultural wealth of The Palm Beaches is remarkable, earning its reputation as Florida’s Cultural Capital. There are many world-class galleries and museums in the area, as well as interesting festivals and concerts that fill the air with festive music all year long.
Wellington, in particular, has a huge renovated public library. It hosts seasonal events like the Barett-Jackson Auto auction, Top Gun model aircraft show held annually, holiday parades, and interesting antique shows.
The outdoor site of the Perfect Vodka Amphitheater is a regular venue for film and musical events.
Diverse entertainment is one of this community’s major attractions. For instance, the Wellington Amphitheater hosts different musical and comedy performances, free movie night, the Food Truck invasion, etc.
The Boca Raton Museum of Art, the Flagler Museum, Norton Museum of Art, Old School Square, Pineapple Grove, etc. are world class art meccas in the West Palm Beach area. Their openings and exhibitions are historic and mind-blowing.
There are two regional malls in Wellington, the Old Wellington Mall and the Mall at Wellington Green. These add up to the many renowned retailers at outdoor shopping venues on the wide commercial streets to serve the residents and influx of visitors.
Anyone familiar with the thriving affluent community of Wellington in the Palm Beach area is no stranger to the many high-end shops on its wide streets, sights of multiple luxury sports cars, and famous country clubs. The town is popular for its equestrian values and the many show jumping, dressage, polo, and hunting events it hosts.
Wellington’s annual Winter Equestrian Festival pulls more than 250.000 horse enthusiasts to this side of the country. Every January to April sees Wellington become even more filled with Luis Vuitton bags and Polo shirts. World famous athletes, musicians, celebrities, and CEO’s of bigtime companies all gather in the small village to revel in riders and jockeys trotting sleek horses across pearl white sand and pristine grass lawns. A staggering 2.800+ riders congregate from over 30 countries and 40 states to grace the biggest international running horse show.
A recent annual expansion to over forty weeks of equestrian competition includes the new Global Dressage Festival. The town’s unique environment and modern facilities host several top polo tournaments such as the Nespresso U.S Polo Open and the USPA Piaget Gold Cup both held at Palm Beach International Polo Club. A good number of charities, brunches, and corporate events are played at the International Polo Club in Wellington.
The Palm Beach International Polo Season also offer non-stop excitement on and off the field.
Wellington Horse Shows
Wellington, Florida is a prestigious destination for professional horse enthusiasts, amateurs, and families just looking for the best equestrian experiences. Here are some of the horse shows that make this possible;
The Popular “Wellington Horse Show”
This show constitutes the esteemed WEF (Winter Equestrian Festival) and the AGDF (Adequan Global Dressage Festival). Often referred to simply as the Winter Equestrian Festival, this show has shaped the horse sports massively in recent years. Both events are hosted at the PBIEC (Palm Beach International Equestrian Center). And pull huge crowds of the most enthusiastic competitors and fans from the US and across the world.
Participants usually include the smallest mini-stirrup and lead-line pony riders as well as pros at the top of the game. From January to April, equitation riders, hunters, jumpers, and dressage competitors are treated with the finest competitions, footing, and stabling.
The PBIEC (Palm Beach International Equestrian Center) is a true “Equestrian Lifestyle Destination” which covers 500 acres. It features an equestrian show complex measuring over 100 acres with 15 show rings, a clubhouse, stables, dining, and vendor areas. There’s a striking White house tavern in the facility with contemporary and international dining.
The most elite competitors stay at the Grand Prix village which is located very close to the festival.
The Winter Equestrian Festival
This interesting show started in the 1970’s and runs through 12 winter weeks from January to April every year. It has since grown into the biggest and longest running equestrian show worldwide. Its management and production is currently handled by Equestrian Sports Productions, LLC, and Mark Bellissimo. And they are supported by an incredible list of sponsors.
Participants, usually between the ages of 02 – 70 years, bring close to 6.000 horses to the WEF. The wide range of different competitions for all skill levels makes each week feel like a whole new horse show.
There are separate competitions for children, juniors, amateurs, adults, and professional equestrians in more than 70 divisions. And, the very best in the various divisions from over 42 countries always answer present.
The wealth of competitors usually attending the WEF is an essential factor in the show’s popularity. Prize money for the 2018 event went above a whopping $9 million. It’s important to mention that horses of stature that match even the most elite riders are usually on show too.
Lastly, classes are usually held during the festival for equitation, hunters, and jumpers
Adequan Global Dressage Festival
This is one of the latest additions to the Wellington Horse Show. The Adequan Global Dressage Festival is held at a sixty-acre ground with four outdoor arenas, rivaling those even at the Olympics. With prize money going above $550.000, this is definitely among the wealthiest dressage circuits across the globe.
Riders flock to Wellington, Florida to represent nations like the USA, Venezuela, Mexico, Netherlands, Ireland, Great Britain, Germany, France, Denmark, Columbia, Canada, Brazil, Australia, and Argentina.
The Global Dressage Festival usually goes on with many high-class dressage classes such as the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI 3*.
The Wellington Horse Show continues to expand every year with the grounds, equestrians, and news coverage figures constantly showing progress.
The New York Times, USA Today, and other big names are on the illustrious list of newspapers that have covered the event.
Olympic Competition and Other Top Events
Accompanying the different skill levels and divisions of competitors at the Wellington Horse Show is always a good number of top Olympians. They all show up to battle for different important FEI level competitions and trial qualifiers for the Olympics and the FEI World Cup Finals. There’s usually a leg of the FEI Nations cup and a host of top show jumping competitions.
Examples are; four CSI 5* competitions (4 weeks), three CSI 4* competitions (3 weeks), as well as the $500.000 Rolex Grand Prix CSI*.
Many AA equitation and show hunter classes are always on show as well. For instance; the $100,000 USHJA/WCHR Peter Wetherill Hunter Spectacular which took place during WEF 6 in 2018, the George Morris Excellence in Equitation Medal/Maclay classes, the $50,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby, and the $50,000 WEF Derby
On-site dining at the Wellington Horse Show presents particularly exceptional experiences for visitors. Some of the top chefs in the world are usually present sampling attendants with amazing culinary creations. You can savor the finest wines while watching ringside.
In addition to the sporting frenzy, the WEF features many interesting private and corporate event.
The Events Pavilion and Suites offer group reservations when it’s time for the Saturday Night Lights Series. The Oasis Café, Tiki Hut, Tito’s Tacos, or Beachside are great options for more casual dining experiences.
Visitors can get scenic and top to bottom views of the International Wellington Arena offered by The Gallery and The Wellington Club respectively. White Horse Catering oversees the catering during these events.
Vendors and Sponsors
The names of vendors and sponsors at the WEF are usually among the most prestigious in the world. Team and tournament sponsors include big names like Rolex, Hermes, Karina Brez Jewelry, Pernot Richard, US Trust, Fidelity Investments, etc.
The US Open Polo Championship
The US Open Polo Championship is arguably the biggest when it comes to polo tournaments in the United States. This is the latest illustrious polo tournament to make a long-term move to Wellington, Florida. Since 2004, it has been held at the International Polo Club Palm Beach and is due to stay there till 2021 as announced by the United States Polo Association.
The prestigious competition was first played in 1904 with only two teams at Van Cortlandt Park, Bronx, New York City. Massive transformation over the years has seen the US Polo Championship become one of the most recognizable competitions in the equestrian world. It’s the last event of the Florida High-Goal Winter Season which attracts top names in the sport.
Recent developments have also seen the USPA lower the goals for the four events between 2019 – 2021 from 20-26 to 18-22. A move fueled by the organization’s bid to promote the growth of high-goal polo.
The perennial US Open Polo Championship trophy was designed by Sally James Farnham inspired by a tureen from the seventeenth century. The beautifully forged silver trophy was stolen in 2002, but was recovered a few weeks later and is now safely kept by the Museum of Polo and Hall of Fame in Lake Worth, Florida.
Any visit or stay in Wellington without experiencing the spectacular divot stomping and tailgating through the polo season is simply INCOMPLETE.
TOP REASONS TO BUY IN WELLINGTON
The real estate industry is booming in the US and Wellington, Florida is a fantastic place to purchase a horse property or horse farm. Whether you are an equestrian enthusiast or strictly a businessman/woman it’s difficult to resist the profit-making potential and unique experience. Here are some of the top reasons to buy in Wellington;
- Rich Equestrian Community Culture and Lifestyle
- The Wellington area attracts more than 300.000 visitors every year.
- Family People.
- A vibrant economy and Commercial Stability
- Front row experience of the biggest polo events in the world.
- Become part of a lucrative market which already features many celebrities.
You wouldn’t want to miss an opportunity to visit, live in, or buy a property in these parts. There are many adverts carrying the farm for sale or horse property for sale caption in Wellington. Take a closer look when next you come across them and make an investment which will help you make money happily.