Bill and Melinda Gates enjoy NYC dinner to celebrate daughter Phoebe’s 21st birthday, two-and-a-half years after their marriage ended
- Bill and Melinda Gates, who split in 2021, reunited to celebrate their youngest daughter’s birthday
The Microsoft co-founder, 67, and his former wife, 59, called it quits in 2021 after 27 years of marriage amid allegations of infidelity on his part with his relationship with convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein also believed to have put a strain on their relationship.
Bill kept it casual on Thursday wearing a wool sweater over a white t-shirt and a pair of blue chinos with some navy sneakers. Melinda meanwhile went for a white flowing dress, with a tote, as well as bright pink strappy high-heel sandals and purse.
Earlier on Thursday, Bill shared a pictured of Phoebe on Instagram. ‘Watching you do big things has never surprised me. I’m so proud of you,’ he wrote in a touching tribute to her on her special day.
Melinda meanwhile shared a Facetime call that she had with her daughter on her birthday telling her always keep her friends close and to know yourself ‘a lot.’
‘That way you’re never going to go wrong in life. Happy 21st birthday. I’m so proud of you and I love you so much,’ she added.
Phoebe’s older sister, Jennifer, 27, joined in, posting some personal photos of the siblings while saying: ‘I couldn’t be more proud of you as a young woman, entrepreneur, best sister, friend and auntie. Love you more than I can express, P, and will forever have your back. Now let’s celebrate,’ Jennifer wrote in the caption.
Phoebe is the youngest of three children from Bill and Melinda’s ill-fated marriage. She has a net worth of about $10million – much of it likely due to her wealthy parents.
It’s no surprise to see the youngest Gates child pop up at New York Fashion Week after several years in the revolving world of high fashion and fashion journalism.
In years past, Phoebe has attended shows and parties at Paris and New York Fashion Weeks. She also spent a summer interning for British Vogue.
Most recently, Phoebe is in the process of launching a sustainable fashion platform with her college roommate, called Phia, which she often promotes on her Instagram. She has more than 300,000 followers on the social-media platform.
Though the product is yet to be precisely defined, the pair of students have already landed coveted partnerships with top-tier designers focused on sustainability, like Stella McCartney.
Phoebe has previously described herself as a ‘reproductive rights activist’ and is studying Human Biology at school.
In 2022, Bill admitted that his meetings with Epstein were a mistake during an interview with The Times. The pair first met in 2011.
‘At the time, I didn’t realize that by having those meetings it would be seen as giving him credibility,’ Gates told the London-based newspaper.
‘You’re almost saying, ‘I forgive that type of behavior,’ or something. So clearly the way it’s seen, I made a huge mistake not understanding that.’
The dinners were a point of contention between the Microsoft billionaire and his now ex-wife and business partner, Melinda, who described Epstein as ‘evil personified.’
In earlier interviews, Bill stated how he ultimately stopped meetings with the convicted sex offender after he realized the meetings would not be productive for his philanthropic foundation.
‘I had dinners with him. I regret doing that. He had relationships he said with people he said would give to public health. Not nearly enough philanthropy goes in that direction,’ Bill said in a September 2021 interview.
‘Those meetings were a mistake. They didn’t result in what he purported, and I cut them off. You know, that goes back a long time ago now,’ he said to PBS.
Bill was in New York Thursday after spending the week at Senator Chuck Schumer’s AI summit this week in the nation’s capital.
During the conference, Tesla founder Elon Musk reportedly made a ‘beeline to shake Bill Gates’ hand,’ reports the New York Post. That came after rumors that there was some kind of beef between the two tech billionaires.
The beef is a subject in Walter Isaacson’s new book, Elon Musk, in which it’s reported that the South African rejected Bill’s invitation to join a group philanthropist billionaires.
Since their high-stakes split, Bill and Melinda have both reportedly been dating new partners.
Bill has been spotted numerous times with Paula Hurd, 60, the former wife of Oracle co-CEO Mark Hurd, who passed away in October of 2019.
Melinda, who called her divorce from the software billionaire ‘unbelievably painful,’ has reportedly been seeing former Fox reporter Jon Du Pre, 63, since last year.
While they were still a couple, the Gates’ famously said they would try their best to deliver normal lives to their children, despite the extraordinary circumstances.
Bill previously announced that he was more interested in giving his children an education so they can make something of themselves. He vowed to give each of them a small amount of money, before passing the rest onto his eponymous foundation.
Gates said: ‘Our kids will receive a great education and some money, so they are never going to be poorly off, but they’ll go out and have their own career.
‘It’s not a favor to kids to have them have huge sums of wealth. It distorts anything they might do, creating their own path.’
The exes may have tried to raise their kids as modestly as possible, but their living situation was far from humble – the family grew up in a $131 million mansion in Medina, Washington, that came complete with seven bathrooms, 24 bathrooms, and six kitchens, as well as its own man-made beach, at-home movie theater, gym, and trampoline room.
The property, worth an estimated $131 million, is nicknamed ‘Xanadu 2.0,’ a reference to the fictional estate in the movie ‘Citizen Kane.’