Inside Antilia: Antilia is a private home in South Mumbai, India. It is owned by Mukesh Ambani, Chairman of Reliance Industries, which includes a staff of 600 to maintain the residence 24/7.
As of November 2014, it is deemed to be the world’s most expensive residential property, after Buckingham Palace, which is designated as a crown property. It is thus the world’s most expensive private residential property, valued over $1 billion. Its controversial design and ostentatious use by a single family has made it famous across the world.
Antilia was designed by Chicago-based architects Perkins and Will, with the Australian-based construction company Leighton Holdings taking charge of its construction. The home has 27 floors with extra-high ceilings. (Other buildings of equivalent height may have as many as 60 floors.) The home was also designed to survive an earthquake rated 8 on the Richter scale. It is considered by some to be the tallest single-family house in the world. Because it includes space for a staff of 600, others reserve that honour for a house meant to be occupied only by a single family.
“It’s a modern home but with an Indian heart,” Nita Ambani remarks. “Getting my temple right was so important.”
Ambani’s home features countless lounges, offering Reliance Industries guests a quiet escape. Chandeliers and mirrors are a common feature of these rooms, as are finely woven Indian area rugs.
The top floor features a covered, outdoor entertaining space with panoramic views of the Mumbai skyline as well as the Arabian Sea. On those days when it’s too hot, or cold, an interior space with floor-to-ceiling windows provides the same luxury.
A statue of the Hindu god Ganesh, revered as the remover of obstacles.
One of ’s key design themes is the mix of lavish features seen in worldwide homes and elements that are distinctly Indian. The Gingko-leaf sink designs are a good example. Native to India, the leaves in the sinks are shaped in such a way that their stems guide water into the bowl created by the basket of the leaf.
A statue depicting Shiva, the Hindu deity who destroys to make way for new creation.
Nine elevators dot the lobby floor: Two are designated for parking areas, three for guest quarters, two for the Ambani family residences and two for service. The lobby opens to numerous lounges, reception areas and powder rooms. Dual stairways lead from the lobby floor down to the ballroom, which is designed in an open layout with a two-story roof.
The most striking features of the Antilla ballroom are the crystal chandeliers that will take up approximately 80% of the ceiling. The silver stairways lead to a central landing, behind which two retractable doors can open to display works of art. There is also a stage for entertainment or speeches, with a projection screen behind it. A kitchen, about the same size as the ballroom itself, can service hundreds of guests.
Nita Ambani poses in front of a large outdoor sculpture.