7 Most Lavish Cities To Visit In The World
By: Pinki Mon, 27 July 2020 3:12 PM
Humanity has a history of excess, from over-the-top feasts and festivities to gambling money away for the sake of it. Today, there are many destinations that cater to that lifestyle and serve as playgrounds for those with disposable cash. We round up 7 of the most extravagant cities.
* Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Dubai was nothing more than a desert until the late 20th century. Today, it is a city designed and developed by the rich for the rich, funded largely, of course, by oil. Popular activities usually involve spending vast sums – whether that’s at designer boutiques or on days out on a luxury yacht. It is no place for the budget traveller. The skyline of the city aptly represents its grandeur; take the Burj Al Arab, sometimes called a seven-star hotel (although the management does not endorse this officially), and will cost you $20,000 (£16,000) a night. There’s also the striking Burj Khalifa, at 160 storeys, the tallest man-made structure on earth.
* Las Vegas, Nevada
Las Vegas is a resort city located in the middle of the Mojave desert. Gambling is legal here, and it is generally associated with fancy-free indulgence of all kinds. Its infamous strip, with 24-hour casinos, nightclubs and lavish hotels, is where it gets its nickname Sin City. Stay at the pyramidal Luxor or the grandiose Venetian, complete with its own Grand Canal, and visit the famed dancing fountains outside the enormous Bellagio resort.
* Zürich, Switzerland
Zürich makes our list of the world’s most extravagant cities, not as a place of remarkable indulgence and excess, but simply because it is one of the most expensive places to live on the planet. As a hub for banking and finance, basic items here cost a fortune. Take a carton of eggs, at almost $7 (£6), or a bottle of cough medicine at $18 (£14). The wealth comes largely from Swiss banks headquartered here. Meanwhile, its quaint buildings and picturesque promenades are a sight to behold, as long as you don’t expect to stay here long-term.
* Geneva, Switzerland
Set in the Swiss Alps and on the banks of Lake Geneva, with French bohemian influences, Geneva is another beautiful yet decadent European destination. Like Zürich, its prominence comes from its banking prowess, and it is home to both the United Nations and Red Cross headquarters. It comes in at one of the most expensive cities in the world according to a Hotels.com poll, with $30 (£24) club sandwiches to thank for swaying the vote. For those lucky enough to actually live here, there’s a high salary and an even higher quality of life.
* Hong Kong
Hong Kong is the premier financial capital of Asia. There’s a lot of money in this bustling hub, which is home to one of the highest concentrations of billionaires in the world. And as we know, where there’s wealth, there’s extravagance. The city itself is certainly a modern spectacle: rows upon rows of skyscrapers rise against the mountainous backdrop. Some homes sell for upwards of $100m (£78m), and the number of Hong Kong’s superrich is on the rise.
* New York City, New York
New York City is where you’ll find people from all walks of life, and some of them are the world’s wealthiest. Through real estate development and Wall Street, the Upper East Side in particular is home to some of the richest Americans. People here pay tens of thousands to send their children to pre-school, and upwards of $4,000 (£3,100) a year on gym membership. This is one of the world’s most star-studded cities, with black Cadillac Escalades the transport of choice.
A royal principality on the French Riviera, Monaco is the epitome of extravagance, in terms of average lifestyle, the cost of living and glamour. It’s not just the vivid blue sea, beautiful architecture and tropical vegetation that draw some of the world’s wealthiest to this 2 sq km (0.77 sq mi) spot. This tax-free haven means they can avoid paying income tax in their native countries. One in every three Monegasques is a millionaire (and only 9,000 of its 38,000 residents were born here). Meanwhile, like other cities on our list, gambling is a popular pastime in Monaco.