Well, if the current, ever-worsening COVID-19 pandemic isn’t the best time to talk about doomsday prepping, we don’t know what is. With markets crashing, jobs going up in smoke, borders slamming shut and hospitals being overwhelmed, it’s easy to catch yourself staring nervously out from behind the window blinds, scanning the street for looters, zombies, martians, or a hostile military takeover. None of those things are likely, but if you have the money to throw around, why take the chance?
We’ve gone ahead and collected information on some of the most luxurious, impenetrable doomsday bunkers in existence. They’re not cheap, but they’ll do the job of keeping you protected, and they’ll do it in style. Several entries on this list are military hangars, bunkers, missile silos and ammunition depots that’ve been repurposed for residential living. Others are built from scratch. One is even a new type of vault that’ll actually benefit the have nots, as well as the haves. Check it all out here…
This Midwestern missile silo turned so-called ‘survival condo’ is exactly what it sounds like: an underground apartment. Like any good apocalypse bunker worth it’s weight in however many millions of dollars it’ll cost you to grab a slot, this place, while hardly a Manhattan penthouse, is ready to white-knuckle it through just about any end of the world scenario you can think of.
In addition to the 1,820 square foot living units (which are fully decked out and more than a little luxurious), the 20,000 square foot facility has stair and elevator access, redundant water and electric sources, a general store, a pool, a spa, a full gym, a theater, a bar and lounge, a library, a classroom, a medical first aid facility, a command center (!), a digital weather station, and a communications center with onsite internet access. If you’re rich enough to afford a unit here, you probably won’t have to worry about biweekly paychecks. So with everything on site, the question is, would you ever have to leave the silo at all, other than for a change of scenery?
Of course, the luxury survival gurus at your local refurbished nuke silo are far from the first or only folks who have had the idea to transform no longer in-use armed forces facilities. Enter Vivos xPoint, a network of 575 US military bases in South Dakota that were once used as a munitions depot until 1967, when the Vietnam War was heating up. From above ground, xPoint looks like an ugly Shire, with little copy-pasted mounds of earth jutting up in the middle of a sea of featureless grass.
Beneath the surface, though, it’s a different story entirely. When fully ready for action, this facility will be able to accommodate 5,000 people in what’s essentially a miniature neighborhood. The place has classrooms, a gym and spa, and hydroponic gardens. Units themselves are surprisingly affordable too, ranging from $7,500 for a low-end, minimalist apartment to more than a quarter million for the more luxurious ones. One reason for the lower cost is the fact that, like the silos above, the facilities were already designed to withstand a nuclear blast, and simply needed to be furnished.
Vivos Europa One
The same company isn’t just running one so-called ‘survival community’, though. They’re an international organization whose mission is to accommodate anyone on earth with deep enough pockets to worry about a (hopefully distant) apocalypse scenario rather than next month’s bills. Enter Europa One: another Cold War era, converted munitions depot, this time in Germany.
Billed as a modern day ‘Noah’s Ark’, the structure, carved into the bedrock itself, features 34 2,500 square foot residential units that can be doubled in size with the optional addition of a second story. Unlike some other options on this list, these units come empty. It’s up to the buyers to furnish them as they see fit, but Vivos sees that as a feature, not a bug. CEO and founder Robert Vicino says that “Most of these people have high-end yachts, so they already have the relationship and they know the taste, fit, and finish that they want.” If you want to get away from home for a bit, you need only hop on the interior team system to visit any of the site’s restaurants, gaming, and lounge areas.
Not far away from Germany’s Europa One, nestled in a quiet valley in the Czech Republic, sits the Oppidum, which is designed to accommodate a very different breed of doomsday prepper: the loner. For anyone who’s not jumping at the chance to spend the end of days socializing with other well to do rich people, the Oppidum might be the best bet. But just because it’s isolated doesn’t mean it isn’t luxurious. To be fair, the facility is, like the others, a converted military facility from the Cold War era. But that’s barely scratching the surface.
It’s a titanic, 323,000 square foot estate with everything from a full golf course to a helipad to literally automatic defense technology, all on top of the main draw: an enormous underground shelter in which you’ll wait out the end of the world. It has entertainment, culinary and health facilities that rival the most insanely prestigious hotels and mansions on eart. Each on site unit consists of a 6,750 square foot master apartment with satellite suites each taking up an additional 1,720 square feet.
Rising S General Manager Gary Lynch stated that in 2016, sales for his company’s steel plate bomb shelter facilities skyrocketed 700%, with 300% of that representing orders following the November presidential election alone. There’s a reason for the appeal: his nigh impenetrable, custom built bunkers are designed to hold a full year’s worth of food and last for generations. According to the company’s website, each bunker features not only a quarter inch high quality steel but ‘bullet resistant, fail safe, tamper proof doors’.
You won’t have to go to them, either. These boys weld and build each of their bunkers in house and then deliver it to you, where they complete the installation on site. Unlike a lot of other entries on this list, and as if the fact that they’re simply giant steel boxes, Rising S bunkers prioritize safety and privacy above luxury. So if you want to weather Armageddon in style, look elsewhere. This one is for survivalists. Which, I mean, if you’re aiming to outlast most of mankind in your bunker, why wouldn’t you shoot for protection above all else? There’ll be time for clinking wine glasses when you’ve repopulated the planet.
The Safe House
Yet another entry from Europe (do they know something we don’t?) is KWK Prome’s Safe House in Poland, an above ground ‘Polish cube’ that’s a lot more pleasing to the eye than military hangars with a throw rug at the door. At least, it is until the Apocalypse is unleashed, at which point the walls of the building fold in on themselves, sealing the luxurious interior in a locked cage of bulletproof metal. So Safe House has something the other entries on this list don’t: the luxury of choosing when your house is a lovely, welcoming home surrounded by gardens and wide-open bay windows, and when it’ll transform into a front lines bunker that’ll make the Pentagon jealous.
In other words, the ‘safe zone’ can move between the outer limits of the property, allowing for an open, inviting appeal, and the walls of the house itself when it’s sealed off. We imagine one of the biggest issues facing doomsday preppers is the social stigma. Nobody wants to be seen as a kook, and this place allows you to spend the majority of your time pretending not to be one.
It’s like Six Flags, but for the end of the world. This 670 acre compound in Texas is equipped not only to help its occupants outlast nearly any disaster, but to do so in style. It has a driving range, a gun range, an adventure course, a lagoon – a freaking lagoon – and in case the message of ‘elites’ only wasn’t properly communicated, a polo field. Of course, the actual living units are underground and aren’t cheap – they’ll set you back between $449,000 and $1,949,000. Also worth noting that there’s capacity for around 3,000 in Trident Lakes, which is only about 2,300 more than teeny tiny Ector, where it’s located. In other words, it’s more of a city than the city in which its based.
But it’s not all fun and games in Trident Lakes. We mean, it is for you, you disgustingly rich resident. But the 13 foot security wall, twin guard towers disguised as quaint architectural installments and a freaking DNA vault prove this resort/compound/doomsday shelter takes security very, very seriously. The place even comes with a private security force and an airstrip that, at 6,000 feet long, can handle nearly any plane on earth.
(Of course, if the end comes anytime soon, you may not find much help at Trident Lakes these days, as the man behind the project filed for bankruptcy not too long ago.)
BONUS: Svalbard Global Seed Vault
Finally, a bunker/vault designed not just to benefit the absurdly wealthy, but all of mankind. The Svalbard Global Seed Vault is a seed bank, located on the Norwegian island of Spitsbergen (yes, that’s its real name). It’s exactly what it sounds like, too. It’s not for you, or your neighbor, or your rich uncle. It’s for, well, seeds. Specifically, according to conservationist Cary Fowler (working with the Consultative Group of International Agricultural Research, or CGIAR), stated the contents of this vault are essentially genetic duplicates of seeds found in other gene banks around the world. In other words, when the apocalypse hits the fan and potentially jeopardizes other seed vaults, this is the one the world will look to in order to preserve global flora.
The other entries on this list are designed to protect the wealthy and their toys. This one is for us all. Sadly, the very nightmare scenario the vault is designed to help mitigate the damage of – climate change – is its greatest threat. Rising temperatures can and will cause everything from floods to landslides, putting the ark directly in harm’s way.