Aspen polo club buys old Preshana equestrian facility
CARBONDALE — An Aspen-based polo club has purchased the 15-acre equestrian facility once known as Preshana Farms, located at Highway 82 and Catherine Store Road, apparently for use as a base for polo games and activities in the valley.
According to records in the Garfield County Courthouse, the land was sold to the Aspen Valley Polo Club LLC on Oct. 9, by the owner and developer of the nearby Aspen Equestrian Estates housing project, Jay Weinberg and the company he manages, Trend Investments LLC of Rancho Santa Fe, Calif.
Weinberg’s PUD amendment application last spring, according to documents on file with Garfield County, was initially intended to provide a receiving site for relocation of the Ross Montessori school in Carbondale, but that plan was abandoned after the school failed to win county approvals for the move.
The property then was purchased on Oct. 9 by the polo club, in a sale handled by the Carol Dopkin Real Estate company, as confirmed by both Weinberg and Dopkin on Nov. 14. The sale price on the property was $1.85 million, according to documents on file with the Garfield County Clerk’s office.
Aspen attorney Gary Wright, representing the polo club, declined to reveal the name of the buyer, although valley locals involved in the polo scene say it is the family of Marc and Melissa Ganzi, noted members of the national and international polo set.
The Ganzis, who live part-time in Florida and in Aspen, seven years ago launched the Grand Champions Polo Club in Wellington, Fla., near where they live.
Marc Ganzi, a businessman active in wireless communications who recently sold a cell-phone tower company for a reported price of $4.8 billion, could not be reached for comment for this story.
But sources familiar with area equestrian activities have confirmed that the planned use for the old Preshana property, whoever owns it, is to bring polo, known as the “sport of kings,” back to the valley in a higher profile than has been the case recently.
Preshana in the late 1970s and ’80s, was a facility for horse-boarding, equestrian events and polo. The field now occupied by the homes built by Weinberg once was an open field used for polo games.
In 1989, the property’s owners, Henry and Lana Trettin, subdivided the 67-acre property, leaving the equestrian center intact but creating a PUD containing several residential districts and an open space parcel adjacent to Highway 82.
Weinberg, in 1998, won approval for a new PUD and began developing the Aspen Equestrian Estates housing project.
Calls to the Aspen Valley Polo Club yielded confirmation that the Ganzis are involved in the club, but a planned return call from a public relations representative did not materialize.
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