If you have to put your priciest possessions in storage, the location should be somewhere that’s just as special as they are—and this brand new billionaires-only bank vault in London is just the place.
Occupying a 120-year-old former mansion next to the Dorchester Hotel on Park Lane, the luxurious facility—run by International Bank Vaults (IBV)—is geared toward serving ultra-high net worth individuals exclusively. “We won’t deal with millionaires,” the bank’s managing director Sean Hoey told The Guardian. “We will be dealing only with billionaires.”
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Of course, the esteemed seven-figure clientele will be treated like royalty: A well-trained chauffeur will transport customers to and from the vault in the bank’s very own Rolls-Royce. Once they arrive at the facility, customers will be guided through the high-tech security checkpoint—which includes fingerprint and iris scans—before a “white-gloved custodian” helps them collect their safety deposit box.
Miles apart from the average high street branch, Hoey says the whole experience feels more like an “exclusive private members club than a bank.” As you would expect, security is suitably top-notch. The vaults are protected by steel-lined walls, including both the ceiling and floor, to prevent thieves from tunneling below.
All that comes at a cost. “We are the most expensive safety deposit box in London; actually, in the world,” Hoey told The Guardian. The smallest box—which is capable of storing “a fair few gold bars”—measures 2 inches tall, 6 inches wide, and 19 inches deep and will set you back $776 (£600) annually. For context, a box twice that size at Harrod’s—previously the most expensive place to store your valuables in London—costs $601 (£465) a year, while one at Metro Bank is priced at just $311 (£240). “But you know the saying, ‘You get what you pay for,’ and the customers here will be king,” Hoey told The Guardian.
Anyone can apply for a box—providing you have a fat enough bank account, that is. All applicants will be vetted to ensure the bank maintains “a certain caliber of clients,” with most customers being referred from private banks. There is complete discretion and privacy when it comes to the contents of each box and if a billionaire has more riches than can fit in a standard size box—lucky you—they can hire a whole room for $3.25 million (£2.5 million) a year. Hoey says they’ve already had a few inquiries.