What was billionaire Michael Bloomberg doing in Hamilton?

NARELLE HENSON
Last updated 09:05 14/01/2014
Michael Bloomberg, Hamilton, private jet
Bruce Mercer/Fairfax NZ

NICE RIDE: It's not every day you see a jet like this parked at Hamilton airport.

Michael Bloomberg
RICHARD DREW/ Reuters
BILLIONAIRE: Michael Bloomberg.

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Michael Bloomberg has been in town - maybe - with rumour running wild about who owns the private jet parked at Hamilton International Airport.

It flew in from Queenstown on Monday, stayed overnight, and was flown out before 7am today.

The former mayor of New York, who is the multi-billionaire behind Bloomberg media and data company, was sighted in Queenstown recently at Matakauri Lodge, owned by fellow American and billionaire Julian H Robertson III. He dined there with Christchurch mayor Lianne Dalziel.

Rumour had it that the mystery plane's owner was headed to Waitomo with his family for the day.

But Waikato Times inquiries there yielded no results, with local tourism operators unsure who Mr Bloomberg was.

The Hamilton City Council was also unaware Mr Bloomberg had graced the town, suggesting that mayor Julie Hardaker would be more than happy to confirm whether she had a meeting with him, given how good the press would be.

Other suspicions centred around Cape Kidnappers Golf Course, a luxury course and lodge also owned by Julian H Robertson III.

Mr Bloomberg is in New Zealand on a 10-day golfing and kayaking trip with long-term partner Diana Taylor after 12 years at the helm of one of America's most famous cities.

He led New York in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks and during Hurricane Sandy.

His personal wealth is estimated at US$31 billion ($37b).

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