Rory McIlroy buys up whole Holywood apartment block for £2m
Rory McIlroy didn't just buy an apartment in his native Holywood - he bought the whole block, it has been reported.
The multi-millionaire (25) could easily afford a home in LA's Hollywood Hills, but opted for his own Holywood hills in Co Down.
The Belfast Telegraph revealed last week that he had bought a property in his home town.
Yesterday it emerged he had snapped up a three-storey building described as having been sub-divided into five apartments.
He bought the block and has hired an interior designer to turn it into his dream mansion with views from Holywood across Belfast Lough.
The price of the 8,262sq ft property was not revealed but each apartment was on the market separately for £400,000, putting estimates for the whole property at a cool £2m.
But that is small change compared to the £7.2m Rory paid for his stunning bachelor pad in Jupiter, Florida.
Last year McIlroy sold a five-bedroom house with its own golf driving range and putting green at Moneyreagh, Co Down, for £2m.
It remains to be seen if an expanse of green grass at his new home will be converted for golf.
A source said: "Moneyreagh is a few miles up the road from Holywood and whenever Rory got rid of the house there he was staying with his parents when he came home. It was only a matter of time before he got something in Holywood and he was obviously waiting until something that caught his eye came up. This new property is pretty eye-catching."
Rory has maintained links with his home town and regularly visits Holywood Golf Club, where he honed his craft. When he met First Ministers Peter Robinson and Martin McGuinness at Stormont after winning the Open he said: "I am very proud to be from Northern Ireland. I will never forget where I come from."
Terry Prone, McIlroy's spokeswoman, told the Irish Mail on Sunday: "Buying the house is like a bricks-and-mortar statement on his commitment to Northern Ireland, his sense of being rooted in Northern Ireland.
"Rory always says that when his plane is coming in over Belfast he gets the most intense feeling of coming home. His friends are there – the ones he has been friends with for 10 or more years. And, of course, his parents."
Yesterday he appeared on Sky's Goals On Sunday as the show's first non-footballing sports guest.
"I think every boy has a dream of being a professional footballer. I definitely imagined myself in the back garden scoring a goal for Manchester United," he said. "I like to play on the left wing and cut in. I've a bit of speed."
Speaking before United's dramatic 5-3 defeat to Leicester, McIlroy said the Old Trafford men had a poor start to the season but he was hopeful of a turnaround.
After the match he tweeted to his 2.13m followers: 'Spoke too soon...'
The world number one arrived in Gleneagles in Scotland yesterday for the 2014 Ryder Cup between Europe and the USA.