$100 Million North Carolina Equestrian Resort & Show Grounds Formally Dedicated

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Tryon International Equestrian Center.
Tryon International Equestrian Center.

TRYON, North Carolina, Oct. 5, 2014–One of the most ambitious privately funded equestrian resort and show ground developments in the world with an investment of $100 million (€80 million) over the next two years was formally dedicated Sunday against a backdrop of the forested Blue Ridge Mountains.

Five arenas with world class footing and 500 permanent horse stalls have already been built at the Tryon International Equestrian Center and another 500 permanent stables and five arenas, among them a stadium-style venue with 6,000 seats, are scheduled to be built.

A 150-room hotel, resort and spa, an Arnold Palmer-designed golf course and other amenities are planned for the 1,400-acre (566Ha) site.

Dressage shows are planned for the future but the inaugural schedule comprised jumper and hunter competitions including a $100,000 Grand Prix Sunday that was won by Amanda Flint of Long Valley, New Jersey on Chester VDL.

The Tryon venture is speaheaded by Mark Bellissimo, who put together a group of wealthy show horse owners to help fund development as he did for the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center that stages the Winter Equestrian Festival and the Global Dressage Festival in Wellington, Florida.

The local government in Wellington, with a majority elected with hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign funds from a family opposed to the horse show ownership, has blocked development projects including construction of a hotel.

In addition to the Florida shows that are the world’s largest and longest running at 12 weeks, Mark Bellissimo partnered with the flamboyant businessman Donald Trump to stage New York’s Central Park Horse Show of dressage and jumping that held its debut last month as well as a jumper competition at exclusive Mar a Lago on storied Palm Beach.

Tryon is about 700 miles (1,125km) north of Wellington and is located in a region known as the Blue Ridge Thermal Belt, one of the most temperate climates in the United States.