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Billionaire Richard Branson Opened His Estate As Shelter When Hurricane Irma Hit The Island


Richard Branson, billionaire founder of Virgin Group, rode out Hurricane Irma in the wine cellar of his private island’s home. But he wasn’t alone: Branson invited everyone on his team to join him in his reinforced wine cellar

Branson makes a habit of staying on his island through hurricane warnings, and has weathered three storms on it in the past 30 years. But Hurricane Irma was the strongest that had hit the island yet, and there were serious concerns as to whether his structures would be sound enough.

But Branson had faith in the strength of his buildings, and he invited his team in to stay safe. The group played games and chatted during the night before the storm, and Branson describes the scene as something like a “sleepover.” As the hurricane approached, the group went down to the cellar to wait it out.

On September 7th, Branson tweeted the all-clear, announcing that he and his team had handily survived the disaster.

But he was awed by the destruction the storm had left behind. “I have never seen anything like this hurricane,” he said on his blog.

“We are still assessing the damage, but whole houses and trees have disappeared. Outside of the bunker, bathroom and bedroom doors and windows have flown 40 feet away,” he continued.

Not everyone in the Carribean was as lucky as Branson and his team.

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