There are certain perks that come along with being a multi-billionaire, and no one would know that better than Bill Gates. Worth an estimated $53 billion, there is little that this entrepreneur and Microsoft co-founder could not afford. But, more than any of his other purchases, it is something that was seven years in the making that continues to peak the publicís curiosity. Situated on a 5.15 acre lot overlooking Lake Washington in Medina, Washington, Bill Gatesí house is 50,000 square feet of high-tech innovation and design.
James Cutler Architects, in conjunction with the architectural firm Bohlin Cywinski Jackson, designed the estate in the Pacific Lodge style, where cedar lodges and log cabins are the favoured structures. However, its old-fashioned appearance can be deceiving; it is in fact a Mecca for state-of-the-art technology and modern innovative design.
Everything about the home is large, from its eight bedrooms and four building levels, to its 2,100 square foot library and 1,500 square foot theatre. It has a 17 x 60 foot swimming pool with an underwater music system and a glass wall you can swim under to get to the terrace outside. It also has a 2,500 square foot exercise room, a 1,000 square foot formal dining room, a guest house, an underground garage, a grand staircase, and offices, as well as an elevator and an estuary replete with salmon and trout.
The lot for Bill Gatesí house was purchased in 1988 for $2 million. After seven years of construction and renovation by over 300 workers and 104 electricians, the total value of the land and house combined is estimated to be $125 million. Of course, the annual property tax is accordingly high, at $990,000. Building Bill Gatesí house was no easy task Ė when an interior designer didnít like the layout of one part of the house, an entire 60 cubic yards of concrete was demolished. At one point, Bill Gates himself insisted that a cedar tree be moved over just six inches.
It is not just the layout and scale of the residence that attracts attention. Equally as impressive is the abundant use of electronics throughout. For instance, after being surveyed at the entrance, all visitors are given microchips that send signals to various rooms in the house, adjusting for the personís unique preferences in temperature and other settings.
And, visitors to the location are not just the average person. Indeed, he often entertains some of the wealthiest and most powerful figures in the country, including hosting a private party for the National Governors Association. The guests were deemed so important that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security imposed a temporary security zone around the estate blocking off most of Lake Washington for two days.
From the $200 each custom-made door handles, to the digital canvasses that every so often change the artwork on the wall, Bill Gatesí house is a reflection of the creativity and taste of the entrepreneur billionaire.