By Lisa Davis Engel
Polo player and entrepreneur Bobby Genovese, originally from Ontario, Canada, and now a current resident of the Bahamas, is a doting father to his two children and also dedicates his time, energy and resources to numerous philanthropic endeavors, especially those that serve children. In 2013, Bobby developed and launched BG Signature, exclusive luxury destinations and vacation experiences that include private estates and polo clubs in the United States, Canada, Bahamas, England and Argentina. A fleet of private yachts and aircraft complete the collection. An avid polo player, Bobby owns BG Polo Toronto, BG Polo Ocala, BG Polo Ft. Lauderdale and BG Argentina Polo. The Vancouver International Polo Team became the BG Vancouver Polo team, and as a player on the team Bobby was proud they won the Canadian Open and continue to do well. “After traveling the world, it was one of the many highlights of my polo career to return to Canada and win the Canadian Open,” he said.
How did you get involved with horses?
I went to a summer camp where they had an equestrian program. At the end of the camp season, the horses were placed in homes for the winter and the camp would take them back in the summer. I brought home three horses that winter. They were hunters and jumpers. Apparently one of them was also a stallion, because we also got the vet bills along with one of the mares getting pregnant … maybe it wasn’t a really good deal, come to think of it.
How did you get interested in polo?
I didn’t ride from about age 16 to 31. I was invited to go to a polo match in Palm Beach and had never been there and never seen a polo match. I got there and was like, “The gloves, the hats, champagne and the guys would go by on horses and hit a ball. For me, as a former hockey player, it looked like hockey on horseback and I thought, I could do that!”
What has inspired you to purchase polo clubs?
I was with John Oxley, who created Royal Palm Polo and I remember asking him how he started. He told me he bought inexpensive property and created his own polo club, which then became Royal Palm Polo. By the time John died, it was worth $1 million an acre. Based on his experience, I thought if I bought polo clubs, I could do the same. I had the opportunity to purchase the Toronto polo club with a partner, and because of that club’s success, it led me to continue the business model and buy these other clubs, fusing my passion for polo with business which allows me to introduce polo and the equestrian lifestyle to others.
Which person has inspired you the most in life?
My mother was an amazing woman and entrepreneur who had a true gift with people.
What three things are the most important to you?
The most important thing to me is fatherhood, because you don’t get a second chance to be a great father. I also try to give back as much as I can to help family, friends, staff and different charitable organizations. And third is showing my children the world.
How do you relax?
I love being on a horse. Good friends and a great bottle of wine. And being active.
Favorite piece of clothing?
Jeans and a white shirt
I’m on a health kick so I just enjoy eating healthy.
What three traits are most important to you in a person?
Laughter, integrity, people who work at keeping a friendship alive
What’s the best feeling you have ever had?
Love for my children or being in love is the best.
If you could tell every polo rider one thing, what would it be?
Stay on the horse!
How many weeks of the year do you travel?
As many as I can. I love seeing the world.
If you had a week off, what would you do?
I would take my kids and go on an adventure. My son was studying the Great Wall of China for class, so away we went to see it in person.
Do you have a “bucket list”? If so, what tops that list?
I would love to do more adventures with my kids. You can’t do enough of them.