Owned by business tycoon Mukesh Ambani, “Antilla” is the world’s most expensive home valued at $1 Billion. The 27 story, 400,000 sq/ft home is located at the Altamont road, in South Mumbai, an area where land prices are estimated at US$10,000 per square meter. The majestic mansion stands 570 feet tall above ground and is considered one of the tallest structures in Mumbai. The 60-storey building includes 27 habitable floors, including six parking floors for capacity upto 168 cars.
The luxury amenities include a well-equipped movie theater with seating capacity for 50 people, a health club and a stunning pool. Several gardens and terraces glorify the buildings architecture while three helipads on the roof, an in-house garage, and nine elevators enhance the comfort of living to huge extents.
Designed by Chicago based architects “Perkins and Will”, the luxurious home is also built to the highest safety standards, and can easily endure an 8-richter scale earthquake.
The splendid interior details include a traditional lounge with stunning decoration, a ballroom equipped with designer lighting, and an ice room infused with artificial snow flurries, three floors of hanging gardens and a completely furnished lobby.
Described as the “Taj Mahal of the 21st century”, Antilla is well maintained by a dedicated staff of 600 people.
The home that we look at has been built in one of the prime areas for real estate in the port of city of Mumbai, India. This tower has 6 floors for vehicle parking, a majority of which houses Mukesh Ambani’s fleet of luxury vehicles apart from the 600 member staff quarters and multiple floors for the members of Ambani’s family.
Each floor has been designed on a different theme based décor with all modern luxuries included, along with capabilities to meet its own energy requirements which by no means are meager.
Facilities include a ball room, green room, rest rooms for staff, and indoor and outdoor bars to having a relaxing time in. All of these features along with land valuation have ensured that this tower happens to be the most expensive in the world, costing close to $2 billion in total worth, which perhaps is befitting the profile of the world’s 5th richest man.
But following recent news, this mansion has come under the scanner of legal authorities in India, for several legal roadblocks that this property has run into, primarily financial. However, after investigations, it has emerged that there are several legal loopholes which have been bypassed for acquiring the land on which it stands.
Sources mention that the land was allotted for educational and charitable purposes, for educating Muslim children under the umbrella of the Wakf board in India. For all those who wouldn’t know, Wakf under Islamic law is an asset which is specifically set aside for charitable purposes as had been the case here. But legal scrutiny has exposed that the land was acquired illegally by the owners of the Antilla tower, by paying a cost which is multiple times lower than the standard rate set for real estate in that area, and also bypassing several other legal hurdles.
According to the state chairman of the Wakf board N.D.Pathan,
“Some trustees got permission from the charity commissioner and sold the house to Mr. Ambani. The Wakf Board tried to recover the land but Mr. Ambani went to court and obtained a stay from the Bombay High Court.”
Also the state minister for minority affairs, Mohammed Arif Naseem Khan has requested that the case for the same be handed to the Central Board of Investigation (CBI) for scrutiny as the case has snowballed into a major issue. In terms of aesthetics of the overall building, there have been contradictory assessments from noteworthy sources such as writer Shobha De who says, the Antilla is the Taj Mahal of the 21st century. On the other hand, the ‘book-stack’ exterior structure hasn’t gone too well with designers either, and the spending which has been opulent at the least, has been criticized because of a vast majority of the population of Mumbai, live under sub-standard conditions, not too far away from the other.
As we admire and stand in awe of the luxuries that the mighty surround themselves in, we tend to overlook some of the other aspects of their lives which are surely not befitting of such iconic figures. Apart from this criticism, our admiration of the Antilla still remains untouched, largely.
Also, check-out our list of Most Expensive homes.
Image Credit: VanityFair