Private island homes: the ultimate statement property for billionaires

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There are currently over 1,000 private islands available for sale, and the market has experienced significant growth after the recession of 2008-2009.

For many ultra wealthy individuals, owning a private island is the ultimate luxury and showpiece property. There are currently over 1,000 private islands available for sale, and the market has experienced significant growth after the recession of 2008-2009, according to the Wealth-X and Sotheby’s International Realty UHNW Luxury Real Estate: Multi-Homers Report.

The Caribbean and the Mediterranean remain popular locations for owning an island home, but Southeast Asia has also increased in popularity. Other hotspots include Canada, Belize and the UK.

While many buyers are motivated by a desire to own a signature home that acts as a private retreat, others are motivated to purchase islands or large parts of islands by conservationist impulses, and the desire to preserve natural spaces and rare ecosystems.

Below are examples of high-profile billionaires who have purchased private islands:

Oracle CEO Larry Ellison bought a 98% stake in the Hawaiian island of Lanai in 2012, with plans to transform it into “the first economically viable, 100% green community.” Ellison will eventually build up to nine smaller hotels, an airport and tennis facilities, while improving the infrastructure.

LVMH Chairman and CEO Bernard Arnault reportedly owns Indigo Island in the Bahamas. The 135-acre retreat rents for up to US$300,000 per week.

Google co-founder and Alphabet Inc. CEO Larry Page owns 30-acre Eustatia Island in the British Virgin Islands. In 2007, Page was married on nearby Necker Island, a private 74-acre paradise that belongs to fellow billionaire Richard Branson.

British investor and Chelsea Football Club owner Roman Abramovich is spending about US$400 million to build a new museum complex on St. Petersburg’s New Holland Island, an artificial 18-acre island created in the 18th century. The plans, announced in 2010, call for transforming the island’s 300-year-old warehouses into a cultural and commercial centre, with a possible permanent home for Abramovich’s own art collection.

Credits: WEALTH-X www.wealthx.com

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