Geoffrey Edelsten’s greatest contributions were in the business world, but the 78-year-old will be best remembered for his colourful relationships.
Edelsten died in his apartment on St Kilda Road in the Melbourne CBD on Friday afternoon.
His death is not being treated as suspicious.
The GP and founder of the Allied Medical Group loved AFL football and became the first private owner of the Sydney Swans.
But it was his love of women that made headlines. Though he met and married his first wife, model Leanne Nesbitt, in the 1980s, it was his relationship with Brynne Gordon that will endure in the minds of most Australians.
Gordon, a fitness instructor who changed her name to Edelsten after they married in 2009, was a socialite who regularly appeared in Australia’s gossip pages.
Contacted for comment on Friday evening, her agent told news.com.au: “It is with great sadness to hear of the passing of Dr Geoffrey Edelsten today.
“On behalf of Ms Brynne Edelsten, we send our deepest and sincerest condolences.
“Brynne and Geoffrey enjoyed some truly beautiful moments, including their wedding which saw Brynne call Australia home since their wedding back in 2009.
“While their marriage ended after 5 years together, Brynne remains grateful for the good times the couple had shared together and is deeply saddened and shocked to hear the news of his passing.”
Brynne, who was 25 when she met Edelsten on a blind date in Las Vegas, married the multi-millionaire in style. Their lavish wedding on November 29, 2009 would be spoken about for years to come
The pair, who had a 41-year age gap, raised eyebrows with their jaw-droppingly lavish nuptials which cost a staggering $3.3 million at Melbourne’s Crown Casino.
In an interview with Stellar magazine, Brynne said she never married for money.
“Money is nice. Nobody is going to turn money down. But it was never about that. Believe it or not, Geoff can be very, very nice,” she said of the Melbourne-based businessman.
Reflecting on their wedding day, she said: “I cried the whole way. Mum said, ‘Brynne, if you don’t want to, we can run away right now.’ But, of course, I didn’t want to run away. I wanted to marry him.”
Their wedding included a helicopter arrival and circus performers for 500 guests including Margot Robbie, Kerri-Anne Kennerley and American actress Fran Drescher.
Bizarrely, Seinfeld actor Jason Alexander gave an address at the wedding, and narrated a DVD invitation shot by Pretty Woman director Garry Marshall.
The couple had never met Alexander, or The Nanny actress Drescher.
“We met them briefly when they flew into Melbourne,” Brynne told news.com.au last year.
“They were both lovely. Jason especially was very funny. Geoff had them at the wedding because he wanted people who were Jewish, because he is Jewish.
“When they spoke at the wedding I remember thinking that Jason was absolutely hilarious.”
Brynne later told news.com.au she didn’t even realise Margot Robbie was at her wedding.
“At that point, I was just starting to get familiar with Australia in general, let alone know who the people were at the wedding,” she said.
“I didn’t actually understand, let alone appreciate how lucky I was to have those people there. I didn’t realise how big a deal it was,” she added.
“Now I look at some of the guest list, and it’s actually really impressive. I was a bit oblivious to it all at the time.”
The pair’s relationship would not go the distance. Brynne later said it was “a lonely marriage because he worked very hard”.
After splitting, Edelsten was linked to Gabi Grecko, who is 46 years his junior.
They married on June 11, 2015.
Edelsten and Grecko became engaged in November, 2014 after he proposed to her during the Melbourne Cup at Flemington Racecourse.
Grecko posed for engagement photos in an elaborate bustier and winged headdress, towering over Edelsten beside her all dressed in bright yellow.
The union got off to a shaky start after one of them promptly dropped the ring and Edelsten had to search for it under a couch in the Birdcage at Flemington.
Grecko and Edelsten have always made news for her daring outfits and his colourful suits.
The personality split from Edelsten in 2015 but reunited with him in 2018. The pair were rumoured to have split in 2019.