A day earlier the World Health Organisation reported a record daily increase in infections (over 237,000) across the world. The WHO also issued a dire warning that the situation will get “worse and worse” if governments don’t take decisive steps to curb the spread of the disease, which has killed more than 600,000 and infected 14.2 million to date.
The unofficial motto of the coronavirus pandemic has been – maintain social distance and avoid close contact – and the rich have been doing so on a grand scale, buying elite bunkers and even private islands. Just recently Horse Island off the coast of Ireland was sold for $6 million with the buyer, whose identity has not been revealed, purchasing the locale sight unseen.
Negotiations on the sale of the 157-acre island, which has its own electricity, sewage systems, huge main house and six guest houses, reportedly occurred via WhatsApp and the buyer didn’t actually visit the location, taking only a video tour of it.
“Horse Island is a unique trophy asset; sourcing the land and getting the sale over the line during COVID-19 has been a challenge, so naturally we are delighted with this result”, Thomas Balashev, the founder and CEO of Montague Real Estate, said in a statement.
Since the coronavirus outbreak swept across the globe, there has been immense interest in private islands and houses located in remote locations that have not been hit by the disease. John Christie, an agent at real estate firm HG Christie, said inquiries for private islands have quadrupled since the start of the pandemic.
Clients from all over the world want to weather out the pandemic on islands that are easily accessible, whether it be the Bahamas, or islands in the Caribbean or Central America.
Those who cannot afford to purchase whole islands – whose prices range from thousand of dollars to the hundreds of millions – rent houses in these remote settings. One such location is Musha Cay, owned by illusionist David Copperfield. For a 6 bedroom house, capable of accommodating 12 people, one has to fork out $60,000.
“In our new coronavirus world, private is the buzzword in travel”, he says. “Our clients are telling us that they want to feel safe and comfortable and go somewhere where they can reconnect with family and friends. A private island is what comes to mind first”, Jack Ezon, the founder of the New York luxury travel advisory Embark Beyond Travel told CNN.
Another way to escape the pandemic is bunkers where one can weather out the pandemic, but also a nuclear blast, asteroid collision, tsunami, and biochemical attack. US company Vivos said its sales had gone up 400 percent since the beginning of the coronavirus outbreak.