Nic Roldan has been a professional polo player since he was 15. Now 39, the Team USA Polo player and current No. 1 in the nation made his love for real estate official a little over a year ago when he got his real estate license.
“As soon as I started making some money [through polo], I started investing in small properties,” Roldan told Inman in a recent phone interview.
“My mother’s an interior designer, so at the beginning, it was a bit of a passion project, and then slowly turned into a real business. It’s funny, I’ve always loved design and interior design and architecture, and throughout the years, I have grown a passion for the real estate business side of it. Finding the unique deals and opportunities and my vision for understanding a property’s upside has been something that I’ve sort of gotten really attracted to.”
Roldan also credits his travels for polo for spurring his interest in real estate, as he was exposed to various real estate markets, architecture and design around the world.
“Everywhere I go, I always find inspiration in certain demographics and parts of the world I travel to,” Roldan said. “I take inspiration for designs and create vision boards for future projects. So, obviously, I think polo has been a big part of [my interest in real estate]. I’ve been doing it my whole life, getting to travel to different places around the world. I think polo and real estate go hand in hand for me and my brand. And they work intricately together.”
Roldan, a fourth-generation polo player, was born in Argentina and moved with his family to Wellington, Florida, as an infant. Over the course of his career, he has won more than 40 20-goal tournaments and 10 26-goal or above tournaments.
He started investing in real estate by buying properties every year or two and renovating them to flip. Then he branched out into purchasing land and building barns for equestrian purposes. Ultimately, he got tired of having to relinquish a 6 percent commission to agents helping him with sales, which is what spurred him to get his real estate license, he told Inman. Now he has joined Equestrian Sotheby’s International Realty in Wellington and feels like the time is right to start scaling his real estate business.
“For me, it’s about building relationships, networking, understanding how the business works and growing the real estate side of my company as much as I can,” Roldan said. “The whole [Equestrian Sotheby’s International Realty] team is amazing — they’ve got a great energy and they’re very welcoming. For me, it was a no-brainer.”
Balancing polo and real estate careers might sound like a handful, but on top of that, Roldan also launched High Goal Luxury Gin about a year ago, and has a lifestyle company that sells casual Roldan-branded apparel and experiences with Roldan himself, such as polo lessons.
On top of all that, Roldan is also dedicated to supporting charitable causes that promote the welfare of children. He serves as an ambassador for the Kids Cancer Foundation of Florida and is closely involved with the Neil S. Hirsch Family Club of Wellington (a Boys and Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County affiliate), and the Buddy Program of Colorado.
His many interests keep him quite busy, Roldan said, but between himself and his support team, they keep everything organized. And even though it’s all technically “work,” Roldan said he prefers not to think about it that way.
“I like to stay as busy as I can, and I think balance is extremely important,” Roldan said. “But I’ve got an amazing team behind me … It’s a lot of fun and [these interests are] all passions for me. I don’t even like to say it’s work because polo has always been a passion of mine, real estate and interior design are passions and loves that I have.”
Through polo, Roldan has also been able to connect with some high-profile individuals, from members of the British Royal Family to Kourtney and Khloe Kardashian.
“[The Kardashians were] maybe not so quick to learn, but it was fun,” Roldan said of the time he taught Kourtney and Khloe to ride polo ponies on their reality TV show “Kourtney and Kim Take Miami.”
“We had a good time — it was a pretty entertaining opportunity.”
Polo is not an Olympic sport. But with the 2022 Beijing Olympics now in full swing, Inman had to know — had Roldan been tuning in? Does he have a favorite Olympian?
“[I’ve watched] a little bit,” Roldan said. “I think Mikaela Shiffrin is amazing. Unfortunately, she’s had a bit of a tough start to the Olympics. [Shiffrin, a two-time Olympic Gold Medalist and World Cup alpine skier, was disqualified after her first two events in Beijing.] But, to be honest, I haven’t really been following that much.”
For someone who’s juggling about three jobs at once — more or less — that seems fair.
Get Inman’s Luxury Lens Newsletter delivered right to your inbox. A weekly roundup of all the biggest news in the world of high-end real estate delivered every Friday. Click here to subscribe.