It’s not like Illinois Gov.-elect J.B. Pritzker is hurting for a place to crash.
The billionaire businessman and heir to the Hyatt hotel fortune has his main house on Astor Street in Chicago’s Gold Coast, a Wisconsin equestrian farm, a vacation retreat in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, known as Casa del Sueno, and another place in the Bahamas. And he just bought an equestrian estate in South Florida for $12.1 million.
But now he’s got another place to keep a toothbrush and a spare set of clothes: The Illinois Governor’s Mansion.
Not long after winning the state’s highest election earlier this month, Pritzker committed to living in the Springfield mansion, according to the Chicago Tribune.
It’s not like he’s going to unload any of the other places, though, in part because his teenage kids will continue to go to school in Chicago.
Not every top state executive has been so excited to spend time in Central Illinois: Former Gov. Rod Blagojevich — now laying down his head in a federal prison every night — famously made commuted between Springfield and Chicago in order to avoid staying in the mansion, rankling some Downstaters and racking up thousands in travel expenses.
And while there’s little love lost between Pritzker and outgoing Gov. Bruce Rauner, Pritzker does owe his predecessor some gratitude. Rauner and his wife, Diana — themselves not exactly hurting for real estate — oversaw a $15 million renovation of the 163-year-old mansion, reportedly personally contributing $1 million to the effort. [Chicago Tribune] — John O’Brien