Billionaire Ernie Boch Jr. Updates Michael and Maddie About Swansea’s Pleasure Island
I think today was the first time I've ever spoken to a billionaire.
Ernie Boch Jr. was on his way down I-195 heading toward Swansea and his latest venture, Pleasure Island, when he called into Michael and Maddie.
I was stunned when Boch told us that today would only be the second time that he'd visit the property, and the first time he'd see it in daylight. In fact, Boch told us he bought the property sight unseen.
Fun 107 sister station WBSM broke the story last week that Boch might be the new owner after the mega-successful car dealership CEO posted a photo of the island's bridge on Facebook. Boch later confirmed to WBSM that he was indeed Swansea's most prominent property owner.
On Michael and Maddie Tuesday, we asked Boch if he planned on using Pleasure Island, which is also called Shady Island, as a residence or a venue. Surprisingly, he said neither. Boch already has his Norwood estate, which is worth north of $100 million, so he told us he doesn't need to use Pleasure Island as a weekend getaway.
Boch also said he didn't have plans to turn Pleasure Island into a venue, which I thought was a foregone conclusion. However, Boch squashed the idea immediately.
"I don't want to do a venue because that's not my thing," he said.
Instead, Boch seems like he wants to take things slow. He wants to talk with his new neighbors and get a vibe from them to see what they and the town might like to see happen to the property.
"It's an island, there's got to be something super-cool to do," he said enthusiastically. "There has to be."
One thing is for sure: Boch committed to fixing the very old bridge to the island, which has been the worry of emergency officials. They lost confidence in the integrity of the bridge decades ago, which placed the property into a quagmire.
"The lawn hasn't been mowed in over 10 years," Boch said. "So I've got a crew there working on that."
Whatever Boch decides to do with the property, it will likely be an improvement to the area.
He seems excited about the prospects.