Billionaires can afford almost any whim, including choosing their place of residence. Having no problems with paying utility bills and spending on food, they live where they like. What would you choose if you had millions or billions of US dollars? Indeed, the first thought is tropical islands, resort areas, etc. In fact, it’s not quite like that.
Rich people are studied as a phenomenon – after all, many are interested in how they managed to earn their fortunes. At the same time, no less attention is paid to their habits, places of residence, and lifestyle. Where does the richest person in the world live? Where do most billionaires live? You will find answers to these questions in our review.
Knight Frank Wealth Report 2022 city rankings
According to the 2022 Knight Frank Wealth Report, the cities of New York, Tokyo and Paris have become the most popular places to live for billionaires. London and Los Angeles are next. The capital of Great Britain is also recognized as the best city for life and investment.
New York City ranks among the best places to live for the super-wealthy despite their relocation from major cities during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Flora Harley, Associate Editor of Knight Frank Wealth Report, noted that the resilience of cities in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic has been remarkable. Talk of a mass exodus in 2020 quickly led to a boomerang effect as many self-exiles discovered that the grass isn’t always greener away from the hustle and bustle of city life.
The Knight Frank report was compiled before February 24, 2022, that is, before the fall in global stock markets. Equity markets also tumbled last year on concerns about the pace of monetary tightening.
The report shows that the number of ultra-high-income people (from $30 million) rose by 9.3% last year as central banks’ easing of measures to counter the effects of the pandemic led to a sharp increase in stock and housing prices.
Broker Knight Frank predicts that the number of people with assets over $30 million will more than double in the decade to 2026 (to 783,671 people). Asia should surpass Europe and take second place among the super-rich regions.
China has already become the country with the most billionaires after the US. According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, over 80 of the world’s richest 500 people come from this Asian country, controlling about $1 trillion in assets.
Luxury home prices jumped the most on record last year, Knight Frank said in a report.
Top 10 cities with the most billionaires in the world
Where do rich men live? Which cities took the lead in the latest Forbes ranking? What city is home to the most billionaires? Let’s find out together.
10. Seoul, South Korea
- Number of billionaires: 38.
- Estimated total capital: $108 billion.
The South Korean capital did slightly less well than last year, but still managed to get into the top ten cities, thanks to such billionaires:
- Kim Beom-soo, also known as Brian Kim – founder of the country’s largest information app Kakao
- Lee Kun-hee – Chairman of the Samsung Group
- Lee Jae-yong, known professionally in the West as Jay Y. Lee – the vice president of Samsung.
9. San Francisco, USA
- Number of billionaires: 44.
- Estimated total capital: $160 billion.
The City of San Francisco has dropped one position from last year. This happened mainly because some super-rich people left the city or their fortunes decreased. However, billionaires like Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky and Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskowitz are helping to keep San Francisco one of the cities where the ultra-rich live.
8. Mumbai, India
- Number of billionaires: 51.
- Estimated total capital: $301 billion.
Thanks to new super-rich like Falguni Nayar, who became the richest female billionaire in India with her cosmetics and clothing brand Nykaa, the city of Mumbai is in eighth place. A decisive role in the high place of the Indian city in the ranking was played by entrepreneur Mukesh Ambani, who owns more than 30% of the total wealth of all Mumbai billionaires.
7. Moscow, Russia
- Number of billionaires: 53.
- Estimated total capital: $214 billion.
Despite ongoing political tensions, Moscow has re-entered the top 10 richest cities in the world.
In the latest Forbes rating, Moscow dropped from third to seventh position after the well-known events. 26 billionaires have lost so much of their fortune that they no longer appear in the rankings. This, however, did not prevent Moscow from remaining in the top ten this year, thanks to 53 billionaires.
6. Shenzhen, China
- Number of billionaires: 59.
- Estimated total capital: $286 billion.
The city of Shenzhen, known as the Silicon Valley of China, has become home to many wealthy people. The richest of them all is Ma Huateng, founder and CEO of Tencent, one of Asia’s largest technology and internet hubs. His fortune is estimated at 37.2 billion dollars.
5. Shanghai, China
- Number of billionaires: 61.
- Estimated total capital: $187 billion.
The city of Shanghai owes its fifth place, in particular, to the CEO of the agrochemical company East Hope Group, Liu Yongxing. Within a year, he was able to double his fortune, now estimated at $13.2 billion. The city is also home to billionaire Tsai Eng-Meng, who has built a food empire in China.
4. London, UK
- Number of billionaires: 66.
- Estimated total capital: $324 billion.
London was the only European city to make it into the top ten. It holds the fourth spot thanks to a billionaire like Len Blavatnik, estimated to be worth $32.5 billion. It is one tenth of the total wealth of the 66 billionaires living in London today. Also, in this city settled a new billionaire Vlad Yatsenko, co-founder of the online bank Revolut.
3. Hong Kong, China
- Number of billionaires: 68.
- Estimated total capital: $304 billion.
Despite third place, the Chinese city of Hong Kong lost several billionaires among its residents compared to last year. This is due, among other things, to the severe restrictions imposed because of the coronavirus pandemic and the associated freeze of tourism. The most prominent billionaire in the city remains businessman Lee Shau Kee, whose fortune is estimated at $32.6 billion.
2. Beijing, China
- Number of billionaires: 83.
- Estimated total capital: $310 billion.
Where do most rich people live in China? This is the city of Beijing. Like Hong Kong, Beijing has lost several super-rich people this year who are temporarily no longer among the billionaires. However, 83 of them still live in this city, and their total wealth is 310 billion dollars. Zhang Yiming, one of the co-founders of TikTok, is considered the largest billionaire in Beijing.
1. New York, USA
- Number of billionaires: 107.
- Estimated total capital: $640 billion.
New York is a city where money flows like a river. At least, that’s what one might think, given the large number of rich people there. Entrepreneur and former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is worth 13% of the local billionaires’ fortune, estimated at $640 billion.
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Migration of billionaires – ways and directions
The number of billionaires in these 10 cities has increased to 630, with the most significant increase in Asia. This is unsurprising – Asia is an actively developing region with growing needs and a large market. In Asia in general and China in particular, there are a large number of not only billionaires but also “ordinary” millionaires.
True, Chinese millionaires are dissatisfied with the current state of their affairs and are actively preparing for a massive move. At least, such a conclusion can be drawn from a study by Barclays and Ledbury. About 2 thousand people, with a fortune of more than $1.5 million from 17 countries participated in their survey. It showed that 47% of Chinese millionaires are going to emigrate in the next five years.
Following China, a high percentage of possible emigrants is observed in Qatar (36%) and Latin America (34%). In general, almost half of the respondents said that they were going to migrate in the next five years, and this did not depend on the country of current residence.
Why do wealthy people decide to move? Can’t they ensure a comfortable stay in their homeland? According to the survey, 78% of respondents answered that the reason is in children: they are looking for better opportunities for their education and employment. For China, where many wealthy people can be persecuted by government order, and for Latin America, where everything still happens, such an answer is understandable.
And one more point that is clear to everyone, regardless of their wealth: 72% are ready to move for a more pleasant climate. And although not all the super-rich seek to live in a resort, many cannot refuse such pleasure. This is easily explained: the mild climate contributes to good health and excellent mood. And it’s easier to turn millions when everything is in order with mood and health. A billion-dollar business is much easier to manage when there are no unnecessary personal problems.
The most attractive places for wealthy people are still the cities of New York, London, and Singapore. However, nowadays, real competition for billionaires has begun in the world. Many countries around the globe offer favorable migration programs for the rich to come and live: from countries with classic citizenship by investment programs to the issuance of residence permits and permanent residence for contribution to the economy. The geography of such offers is extensive, so those with money have the right to choose.
This is also facilitated by second passports, which almost any wealthy person has. This helps to save time and money not only on business trips but also when planning your own life.
However, not everyone migrates immediately or even intends to change their permanent place of residence. At the same time, nothing prevents millionaires and billionaires from owning second homes anywhere in the world. If you look at the cities of interest to the rich from this point of view, then again, it is not tourist places that win, but civilized and active cities.
After a survey of millionaires with a fortune of more than 10 million, it turned out that more than 22 thousand prefer to buy their second home in London. And this is the first place in popularity. It is worth considering that 9,700 multimillionaires permanently live in this city. And with a large influx of visitors, they can reach 32 thousand.
New York is in second place (after all, the glory of this city has not disappeared anywhere) – 17,400 millionaires have their second homes there. The third place occupies the city of Hong Kong (14,800), and in fourth place is Singapore (11,200). The last two cities are actively sought by the Chinese rich.
An interesting question arises: which city has the most millionaires per capita? This list does not include Moscow. But in the top ten, there are eight cities in Europe. Here you can check which city in Europe has most millionaires.
Monaco is the most densely populated city with millionaires, with one millionaire for every two inhabitants. This is not surprising: it has a good climate, a proven financial system, and a lot of entertainment.
The Swiss cities of Zurich and Geneva took the second and third places in terms of the density of millionaires – 27% and 18%, respectively. In fourth place is New York City, with a density of just 4.63%. Also, in the top ten are the following cities:
So, on your next tourist trip, look around carefully – maybe you can see millionaires in their natural habitat.
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