Billion Dollar Home
Mukesh Ambani has money. A lot of money. With an estimated personal wealth of roughly $27 billion (give or take a few dimes), the chairman of Indian conglomerate Reliance Industries is one of the ten richest people in the world.
And, by the looks of his house, he wants you to know it.
In 2002, Ambani purchased a nearly 50,000 square foot swath of land in an upscale part of South Mumbai — Altamont Road, in the Cumballa Hill area — where land prices can reach up to $2,500 per square foot. (Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue goes for about four times that, but Altamont Road is nonetheless one of the most expensive in the world.) It took him five years to clear the legal red tape necessary to begin construction, but in 2007, Ambani broke ground on his house — a house he named Antilia, after a mythical island in the Atlantic. The house is, in a word, extravagant.
The home — which is habitable right now, but not yet fully completed — has 27 floors and stretches 550 feet toward the sky. There is living space totalling 400,000 square feet; that is, roughly seven football fields. It contains a parking garage for 168 cars and its own auto repair yard taking up one of its floors. It does not have a swimming pool — it has three. There’s a ballroom, three floors of hanging gardens, a yoga studio, its own health spa, and a 50-person theatre. There are three helipads and its own air traffic control tower. And in case the three pools and the rest of the amenities aren’t enough to escape the heat in South Mumbai — Antilia contains an “ice room,” replete with man-made snow flurries.
The building requires six hundred full-time staff members and the building itself cost tens if not hundreds of millions of dollars to build — reports vary widely. The building is estimated to be worth about $1 billion.
And only six people live there.
From the Archives: The Most Isolated People in the World: A tribe of people off the coast of India who are virtually uncontacted by the outside world — and wish to remain that way.
Related: Mukesh Ambani’s brother also owns a huge chunk of Reliance Industries — but is not living in his brother’s house of opulence. Rather, the two are typically feuding, as recounted in this book.
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