This study addresses the experimental validation of a linear time-invariant (LTI) energy-maximizing control strategy for wave energy converters (WECs), applied to a 1/20 scale Wavestar WEC. To fulfill this objective, system identification routines are utilized to compute a mathematical (parametric) model of the input–output dynamics of the device, suitable for control design and implementation. With this parametric model, the so-called LiTe-Con energy-maximizing strategy, recently published in the literature, is designed, synthesized, and tested under irregular wave excitation in the wave basin at Aalborg University. Given that the LiTe-Con requires instantaneous knowledge of the wave excitation effects, estimates are provided by means of an unknown-input Kalman filter, designed in close synergy with the so-called internal model principle. For the experimental assessment, both controller and estimator are directly implemented in a real-time architecture. The performance of the LiTe-Con is evaluated in terms of energy-absorption, showing consistent results with respect to those obtained in numerical simulation, hence validating the LiTe-Con controller in a realistic real-time scenario.