Owning an island is definitely a purchase reserved only for the incredibly affluent. Owning a chunk of land in the middle of the ocean is definitely a commitment, but these five billionaires have taken the plunge and can proudly say they own their own island.
Richard Branson owns Necker Island in the British Virgin Islands. He bought the 74-acre island in 1978 for $180,000 — it’s now a luxe private retreat for visitors, and worth $100 million.
Larry Ellison bought 98% of Lanai, Hawaii in 2012, reportedly for $300 million, with plans to transform it into a top tourist destination.
Ted Turner bought St. Philips Island in South Carolina in 1979 for $20 million, but it’s not open to the public.
David and Frederick Barclay bought Brecqhou in the UK for $4.3 million in 1993 and turned the island into a tourist getaway, with gardens, vineyards, and a local pub. It houses over 190,000 trees and 2,000 animal species.
John Malone owns Sampson Cay in the Bahamas — it is one of the 365 islands in the Exuma Chain. It was home to the resort once, but it was closed for commercial use in 2013. The island is now only open to Malone’s family and friends.