Soccer Icon Ronaldo Makes $40 Million Investment in Hotels

  • Footballer partners with Grupo Pestana on boutique properties
  • Three-time player of year plans for life after sports career

Soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo and Portuguese hotel operator Grupo Pestana SGPS SA plan to invest 75 million euros ($81 million) in four boutique hotels with a total of 400 rooms in Portugal, Spain and the U.S., the biggest investment ever for the footballer.

The first two hotels will open next year on the Portuguese island of Madeira and in Lisbon, Ronaldo said Thursday at a press conference. The third and fourth are scheduled to open in Madrid and New York City in 2017, he said.

“This is the biggest project of my life,” Ronaldo, 30, told reporters. “It’s an investment in a completely different area, but as you can imagine the goal is to take care of my future and the future of my son.”

Ronaldo will invest half of the sum and own 50 percent of the joint venture, according to Dionisio Pestana, the group’s chairman. The soccer star, who won FIFA’s player of the year three times, purchased an apartment in the Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue for $18.5 million earlier in 2015, the New York Post reported on Aug. 16, without saying how it got the information.

“I’m and ambitious person and a fighter,” Ronaldo said. “Obviously this is a completely different world. My world is playing soccer but we all know that life won’t always be like this.”

Madeira-based Grupo Pestana is Portugal’s biggest hotel operator. Ronaldo was also born in Madeira, which is home to the Cristiano Ronaldo museum.

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