Sitting in the heart of Mumbai City district of Mumbai, India is a 27 stories, 570 feet tall private residence owned by the Indian billionaire, Mukesh Ambani, and his family. The elaborate private residence is over 400,000 square feet, and comes with over the top amenities such as three helipads on the roof, 168 car garage that spans over 6 floors, a ballroom, terrace gardens, a spa, hair salon, 80 seat theater, and much more making it the largest sky scraper of a private residence in the whole world (1).
As of May 2020, this incredible home has been valued to be worth $2.2 billion. Next to Buckingham Palace, this is the second most valued residential property, but still the world’s most expensive private residence. Its infamous design has received much recognition over its controversial design and has been heavily criticized by architectural press. Still, it is undoubtedly the fanciest house in the world.
About Mukesh Ambani
Born 1957, Mukesh Dhirubhai Ambani is a billionaire business magnate. Creating success wherever he goes, Mukesh Ambani is the managing director and largest shareholder of Reliance Industries, India’s most valuable company. Thanks to this Fortune Global 500 company, Mukesh Ambani is now the second richest man in Asia as of April 2020, and the richest man in India for the last decade.
In 1981 he began to help his father, Dhirubhai Ambani, run their family business, Reliance Industries Limited (2). By the time Mukesh had started helping his father with the business, it had already expanded immensely, and was already dealing in refining and petrochemicals. Aside from that, the business also provided products and services tailored to retail and telecommunications industries.
Reliance Industries Limited began expanding and create more revenue opportunities for the Ambani family. Another subsidiary, Reliance Retail Ltd., soon became the largest retailer in India. They also owned the subsidiary Reliance Jio, an Indian telecommunications company. Since its launch in 2016, Reliance Jio has earned a spot in the top five telecommunication services in India.
Through Reliance, he also owns many other companies and sports leagues, also earning him the titles of richest sports owner in the world. With much success both earned and passed down to him, Mukesh Ambani has been named by Forbes Magazine as India’s richest person for the last ten years, making him the only Indian business man on the list of the world’s most powerful people.
The Antilia Building
The incredibly breathtaking private residential home is a skyscraper mansion full of the unnecessary, causing much controversy over this massive home. Named after the mythical island, Antil, the house truly is its own small paradise for the wealthy couple and their three kids.
The 400,000 square foot home is 27 stories high, but since most floors are the height of two stories, it puts the house closed to 42 stories tall. The lobby has nine high speed elevators taking you throughout the building very quickly. Six floors are dedicated just to Mukesh’s luxury car collection including a Rs 5 Crore Maybach. A seventh floor is dedicated just to car service and maintenance.
Aside from the six floors of luxury auto, the mansion is also complete with a massive temple where the family prays regularly, a beautiful ode to their ancient Hindu tradition. The temple includes clean marble floors and walls, and large gold shrines. Outside is a massive gold Buddha statue with a green forest and garden backdrop. The temple is serene, calm, and a highly spiritual place of worship for the family.
The extravagant home doesn’t stop there. It also includes terraced gardens, an ice cream parlor, a large recreation center or gym, along with a dance studio and yoga studio. While summers in Mumbai can be extremely humid and hot, the family has created ways to beat the heat besides just a dip in the pool. The Ambani family has a snow room included in this mansion and the walls of this room spit out manmade snow.
Two design motifs we see throughout the house are following the sun and lotus theme. They are repeated throughout the house in elaborate decorations including rare materials such as crystals, mother of pearl, and marble. The family eats exclusively vegetarian and alcohol free meals, and only serves alcohol during cocktail hours. The family’s living quarters take up the top floors so that they would have direct sunlight throughout the day (3).
A house this big does take quite the team to help manage it. The Ambani residence requires a staff of 600 to help maintain the precision and serenity of the home. From private chefs, decorators, butlers, and more, everyone plays a role in maintaining the home. The staff, however, does get to enjoy some of the perks of the home. They have their own staff quarters in the mansion and a floor dedicated as a space for the staff to sit and relax in between duties.
As one could imagine, there is much controversy over the sheer size and necessity of this skyscraper mansion. The land prior to the Ambani home was an orphanage of about 60 children (4). There was much push back at first over whether the land should be sold to build a mansion. The Ambani family, however, compensated the orphanage very well and the sale went through for them to begin building their new family home.
Contrary to much belief, this home is not in a poor area. In fact, it is located off of Altamount Road, Cumballa Hill, one of the richest addresses in the world. However, many cannot ignore the fact that there are still many hurting areas in India, and Antilia was not well received by the public. They believe that the Ambani family along with others who have an enormous wealth should instead find ways to mitigate that wealth to those in need or experiencing hardship.
There is no denying the spectacular architecture, incredible design, and over-the top amenities. This house stands out as the world’s largest, richest, and fanciest private residence. However, maybe a family that has accumulated this much wealth could stand to give up their snow room in order to help those in need.