10+ Celebrities Who Spent Millions To Own A Private Island
Today's celebrities are cashing in paychecks for unprecedented amounts of money. If you were to look up the highest paid movie stars you would find that the lower names on the list are still racking in over $20 million.... per project! That's not an annual income, folks. Of course, movie stars are not the only ones pulling in huge paydays. Musicians have long-since learned how to properly market themselves and rake in just as much cash as the movie stars. Other celebrities have crossed over multiple forms of media entertainment and become "whole packages" in the industry. Naturally, with all this money flowing through their pockets they have to find ways to spend it! However, when you're paychecks are millions upon millions of dollars, spending your cash on private jets and designer clothes are like spending pocket change in a vending machine. The world's biggest celebrities know the ultimate sign of wealth is a private island and there's a whole lot more of them than you ever imagined dropping big bucks on one of their own. Whether it was for their own exclusive vacation spot or a major investment for building a cash-making resort, these celebrities definitely know how to spend their hard-earned cash.
1. Mel Gibson, Mago Island - $15 million
Mago Island in Fiji is worth $15 million but that price tag didn't stop the one and only Mel Gibson from purchasing it in 2005. While there's an awful lot of celebrities purchasing islands as cash cow investments, Gibson just wanted to get away from Hollywood and enjoy his private island in the luxurious Fiji area.
2. Celine Dion, Quebec - $25.5 million
Apparently, her heart will go on... as long as she has her own private island in Quebec for it to spend eternity on. That is until she liquidated the property for $25.5 million! Celine is practically Canadian royalty so it's no surprise that her private island featured an estate fit for a princess but the icon just loves investing and dabbling in the real estate industry too much to hold on to the property indefinitely.
3. Shakira, Bonds Clay - $16 million
While it might seem lovely to own your own private island as a quiet, secluded getaway, Shakira bought her Bahamas paradise as a proper investment. Alongside Roger Waters, Shakira bought a 700-acre island with an estimated worth of $16 million. Instead of rolling around in the sand herself, though, she plans to build hotels and establish a quiet resort for high profile guests. Perhaps other celebrities that couldn't afford their own island but still need a quiet getaway? Time will tell.
4. Lenny Kravitz, Eleuthera - $ Unknown
No one really knows how much money Lenny Kravitz, singer, songwriter, and producer extraordinaire, spent on his Bahamas island of Eleuthera but what we do know is just as fascinating. He doesn't own the island all by himself but he does have his very own recording studio that he travels to and from to tinker in at his own free will. What really raises eyebrows though? He didn't, and won't, build a luxury house. He is content with his trailer on the island. Okay!
5. Eddie Murphy, Rooster Cay - $15 million
When you're worth $85 million like Eddie Murphy then it makes sense to buy not one, but two islands. Murphy's first island must have been a little too small though because in 2007 he purchases this second, larger one to escape to with his family. Rooster Cay in the Bahamas is reportedly worth $15 million. Not bad for a second island!
6. Pamela Anderson, Dubai - undisclosed amount
Pamela Anderson is known for many things but did you know she owns a private island in Dubai? Before she divorced from famous drummer Tommy Lee he purchased her the island as a gift! That's a big way to say,"I love you!" However, Anderson hasn't been able to do much with the island. Rumors have gone around that she intended to invest into it and build a resort but never had the money to do so. For now, it sits.
7. Larry Ellison, Linai - $300 million
Larry Ellison's net worth is $57.4 billion so buying a Hawaiin island for $300 million probably wasn't as big of a deal to him as it is to you and me. The island features not one, but two Four Seasons resorts as well as a house that Ellison has owned since prior to his major purchase. Ellison owns 98% of the entire island. The other humble 2%? Owned by the state of Hawaii, of course.
8. Ricky Martin, Brazil - $8 million
In 2008, Ricky Martin bought his own private island somewhere in Brazil for $8 million! The Livin' La Vida Loca crooner cozies up with his husband in the kind of exclusive luxury only a private island could award.
9. Steven Spielberg, Madeira Archipelago - $ unknown amount
Off the coast of Portuga, one of the world's most famous filmmakers purchased himself two private islands. Spielbeg and his family vacation privately in ultimate luxury and cruise between their two islands on their $200 million yacht.
10. Jay Z & Beyonce, The Bahamas - $3 million
As some of the largest stars in the music industry, it comes as no surprise that this power couple purchased their own private island in the Bahamas. Rather, the island was an anniversary gift from Jay-Z to his wife Beyonce. We always figured Beyonce wasn't a "roses and chocolate" kind of gal.
11. Kim Kardashian & North West, Turtle Island - $5million
The pressure parents must feel these days to help the dreams of their children come true is surely insurmountable. Unless you happen to be Kim Kardashian and you're married to Kayne West. Without a doubt, their children will always live in the lap of luxury and the potential is practically infinite. The now 4-year-old already owns her own island, gifted to her by Kim Kardashian who reportedly intended to build a private theme park on the island.
12. Bill Gates, Grand Bogue Caye - $25 million
Bill Gates is known to be one of the wealthiest men in the entire world so when rumors swirled that he bought Grand Bogue Caye for $25-26 million it was certainly believable. However, it was just a rumor. Of all the world's richest, Bill Gates does not appear to actually own his own island. However, he has definitely visited Grand Bogue Caye and enjoyed it thoroughly. Perhaps that is where the rumors came from?
13. Larry Page, Eustasia Island - $unknown amount
With a net worth of over $53 million, it's no surprise that the co-founder of Google, yes THE Google, owns an island within the British Virgin Islands. Featuring solar-powered luxury villas, the 30 acres area can practically guarantee privacy for the rich and famous thanks to being surrounded by shallow reefs filled with enviable coral heads.
14. David Copperfield, Musha Cay - $50 million
It's no wonder every budding, young magician aspires to be like David Copperfield when they grow up. The magic-man himself has turned the art of modern magic into enough money to purchase and invest in his own $50 million island. Nestled in the Bahamas, Musha Cay is home to an ultra luxurious resort that commands $39k per night and a strict 4-night minimum policy! Is there anything Copperfield cannot do?
15. Tim McGraw & Faith Hill, Goat Cay - $1.2 million
The country music power-couple spent 9 years building a luxury estate on their $1.2 million island in the Bahamas.
In an interview, Faith Hill said of her special getaway: "We wanted to feel connected to the outside. When the breeze comes through the room, it's just life-changing.... It really is! It's something for the soul."
16. Marlon Brando, Tetiaroa- $ unknown amount
Marlon Brando's successful career began in the 1940's and by the time the rollin' 60's rolled around he had accumulated enough wealth to purchase his own island. Originally called the Tetiaroa island, it was renamed in 1973 to Marlon Brando island. After the icon passed away his island was acquired by Pacific Beachcomber SC who opened a resort on the island they call The Brando Resort.
17. John Lennon, Dorinish Island - $42.50K
The Beatles were arguably the most famous band in history so it's no surprise that at one point John Lennon was able to purchase his own island in Ireland, Dorinish Island. After he passed away his wife sold the island for a mere $42k and donated the money to charity. In 2012, the island was estimated to be worth €300,000 ($390k.)
18. The Barclay Brothers, Brecqhou - $4.3 Million
David and Frederick Barclay are well-known British businessmen whose investments in media, retail, and property have been surounded by controversy. Their multi-billion-dollar networth long ago afforded them the luxury of buying Brecqhou island in 1993. Reportedly, it is only open to the public with prior permission.
19. Bernard Arnault, Indigo Island - $35 Million
As the CEO of LVMH, the world's largest luxury-goods company, Bernard Arnault is the 4th richest man in the world so it's no big deal that he owns the $35 million Indigo Island where some of Hollywood's most exclusive celebrities have purchased villas. So exclusive in fact that who they are is a closely, well-kept secret.
20. Ted Turner, St Phillips Island - $4.9 million
Ted Turner, a well-known media mogul, purchased the 4.6 acres island in the late 70's before selling it for just under $5 million to the state of South Carolina where the local department of parks and recreation hopes to turn it into quite the tourist destination, hoping to "offer guided day trips, overnight lodging and cabin and tent camping."
21. John Wayne ,Taborcillo Island $ unknown amount
John Wayne is a legend but he didn't purchase his very own island. In fact, it was a gift! The former Maximum Leader of the Panamanian Revolution, Omar Torrijos, gifted him the Taborcillo island in 1977! Today, Austrian billionaire Ralph Hübner owns the island where he's built a luxury resort complete with an epic theme park. Reportedly, "resort employees dress in denim with cowboy hats and bandanas in keeping with the “wild west” theme of the resort."
22. Richard Branson, Necker Island - $180k
The founder of Virgin Records basically hit the lottery when he purchased Necker Island in the 70's for a mere $180k. Nestled in the British Virgin Islands, Branson built an incredible luxury resort where guests today spend anywhere from $14k to $52k just to book a room for a few nights. Today Necker Island is estimated to be worth $5 billion.
23. Rudolf Nureyev, Il Gallo Lungo - $2.4 million
One of ballet's most famous (and most celebrated) dancers and choreographers, Rudolf Nureyev was no stranger to wealth. In the 1980's he purchased Il Gallo Lungo off Italy’s Amalfi Coast. Today it is an ultra-luxurious vacation destination where you can rent the whole place... assuming you're rolling in cash, of course.
24. Gene Hackman, British Columbia - $ unkown amount
When you're Gene Hackman then it's not a huge deal to sell your small island for $3.9-million in order to purchase a newer, more secluded island in British Columbia instead. Today he is living out retirement in style the way only a famous actor and novelist can, in secluded island luxury.
25. Shah Rukh Khan, Palm Jumeirah - $2.8 million
Shah Rukh Khan is a Bollywood mega-star and globally considered one of the most successful film stars! This mega-star purchased an extravagant villa on the man-made island of Palm Jumeirah of Dubai for just under $3 million!
26. Roman Abramovich, St. Bart’s - $90 million
Roman Abramovich is an incredibly successful businessman and owner of the Chelsea Football Club. The richest man in Israel, where he has dual citizenship with Russia, he spent $90 million to purchase a private island in St. Barts. There, he vacations in maximum luxury with friends and family. That is, when he's not throwing extravagant, star-studded parties like his famous New Years Eve party!
27. Johnny Depp, Little Halls Pond Cay - $3.6 million
It might be said that Johnny Depp is the celebrity most notorious for owning his own little island after he purchased it in 2004. With a net worth somewhere between $200-400 million it's really no surprise that he so easily dropped some serious cash on a little oasis of his own.
28. Diana Ross, Tahitian Island - $ amount unknown
Back when the glorious diva was married to Arne Naess Jr, the couple purchased an island in Tahiti where they had their honeymoon. Sadly, when they divorced they sold the property.
29. Aristotle Onassis, Skorpios - $142 Million
Aristotle Onassis was known as one of the world's richest and most famous men and he's also been given credit for being one of the first celebrities to purchase his own island. When he died in 1975 the island was inherited by his children and his daughter sold it to another famous person for $150 million. What an investment!
30. Louis Bacon, Robins Island - $11 million
Hedge fund manager and philanthropist extraordinaire Louis Bacon dropped big bucks snatching this island away from the competition, all of which intended to capitalize on the property. Bacon, instead, bought it to protect and preserve it and even started the Robins Island Foundation all in order to help the protection and restoration of the island’s coastline, landscapes, and waterways!
31. Julia Roberts, Bahamas - $ unknown amount
America's Sweetheart, Julia Roberts, purchased her own private island in the Bahamas because, well, why not? She's Julia freaking Roberts.
32. Paul Allen, Allan Island - $13.5 million
Microsoft co-founder, Paul Allen purchased his first island for a cool $13.5 million. He decided it wasn't good enough and moved on to a nicer island later and took a hit selling it for only $8 million. We're sure he's not too worried about the financial loss since his net worth is over $20 billion.
33. Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, Greek Islands - $11 million
Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, a former Emir of Qatar, purchased his private island for $11 million from some very eager sellers. Of course it was during Hamad's ruling that Qatar became the richest nation in the world so it's probably safe to say that he earned himself a proper private island.
34. Mikhail Prokhorov, North Island - $35 million
Mikhail Prokhorov is a billionaire, businessman, and politician who simply wasn't satisfied owning only a yacht. He needed his own private island to go along with it. So, after vacationing with his family on North Island in Seychelles, he bought it for a whopping $35 million.
35. Tyler Perry, White Bay Cay - $ unknown amount
Tyler Perry has done a little bit of everything so of course he purchased a private island in he Bahamas. The beautiful island features his personal estate, a marina, spa, and guest cottages.
36. John Malone, Sampson Cay $ unknown amount
Telecommunications billionaire John Malone purchased one of the largest private islands that has ever been put for sale on the market and for quite some time it was a destination resort. However, he closed it in 2013 to make renovations and never re-opened it. Instead, he made it a private holiday destination for himself and his family exclusively.
39. Michael Schumacher, Dubai - $5.55 million
Gifted to him by the Prince of Dubai, Michael Schumacher is living out retirement in incredible luxury when he visits his private island. The island is so exclusive that it can only be reached by boat or helicopter. I'd say he earned a nice treat for being a seven-time world champion of Formula 1 racing.
38. Dean Kamen, North Dumpling - $3.5 million
Of course it makes sense that the inventor of the Segway would own his own island, those things were (and still are) incredibly successful. The 2-acre island in New York is also famous for housing a Stonehenge monument replica. If you ask me, it makes sense that the inventor of the Segway would appreciate something like that.
39. Robin Williams, British Columbia - $ unknown amount
Located in the Pender Harbor, British Columbia, Robin Williams spent many years making memories with his family at his private island. When he passed away it was left to his remaining family and unlike many other children who inherited islands, his family chose to keep his island for the memories.
40. Craig McCaw, James Island - $75 million
A literal pioneer in the cell-phone industry, Craig McCaw purchased his island for a mere $19 million and sold it 20 years later for $75 million. The island came complete with an 18-hole Jack Nicklaus golf course, a 5,000 sq.-ft. home, six guest cottages, an airstrip and even a mock town from the Old West.
41. Dr. Henry Jarecki, Guana Island $ unknown amount
This island, located in the British Virgin Islands, was purchased by Henry and Gloria Jarecki in the mid 1970's where they turned a nice resort into a luxury eco-resort destination, making it one of the most popular Caribbean destinations in the world.
42. Dietrich Mateschitz, Fiji - $10 million
It certainly makes sense that the co-founder of Red Bull energy drink owns a private Fiji island and we're sure it wasn't too big of a deal dropping $10 million on purchasing it. Mateschitz invested in the island, building an ultra-luxury resort for those whose pockets are lined with too much money.
43. Georges Cohen, Calivigny - $ unknown amount
Purchased some two decades ago, Georges Cohen turned his private island into a luxury resort where today some of the most famous and richest celebrities enjoy their vacations. Everyone from Justin Bieber to Kim Kardashian has spent time on this lavish destination island.
44. Angelina Jolie & Brad Pitt, Petra Island - $14.9 million
44. Angelina Jolie & Brad Pitt, Petra Island - $14.9 million44. Angelina Jolie & Brad Pitt, Petra Island - $14.9 millionHow romantic would it be if Angelina Jolie purchased for her then-husband Brad Pitt a heart-shaped island as a token of her love? Super romantic. That rumor made rounds and hearts fluttered but alas, the myth was busted. The property, Petra Island, was up for sale for $14.9 million so it's never too late for a romantic gesture.
45. Naomi Campbell, Turkey - $ unknow amount
Naomi Campbell's Horus-Eye Eco House was an extravagant birthday gift from her Russian billionaire boyfriend Vladislav Doronin when she turned 41. Located on Cleopatra Island in Turkey’s Gulf of Gökova, the unique house was designed by Spanish Architect Luis de Garrido.
46. Jiri Smejc, Velaa Island $200 million
Without a doubt this is the most luxurious island anyone could visit, assuming they can afford to spend as much as $1 million on a single night. The Velaa Island is located within the Maldives and the resort that Smejc had built on it cost a reported $200 million. Of course you have to spend money to make money, right?
47. Nicolas Cage, Leaf Cay - $7 million
When someone steals the Declaration of Independence then surely they can afford to buy a private island. That is until you have tax problems, anyway. Cage couldn't afford to turn the island into a luxury resort but you can buy it today if you happen to have $7 million laying around.
48. Leonardo DiCaprio, Blackadore Caye - $1.75 million
Last, but certainly not least, we have Hollywood's most notorious playboy Leonardo DiCaprio. DiCaprio purchased Blackadore Caye in Belize to build fully environmentally friendly resort-like villas. Reportedly, "Belize has suffered from a backpacker reputation that undermines its true Caribbean charms." But with DiCaprio's eco-friendly resort, Belize is transforming into the luxury Caribbean resort it was destined to be.