Richard Branson to ride out Hurricane Irma in wine cellar
Richard Branson is riding out Hurricane Irma on his private island in the British Virgin Islands, despite it being at risk of taking a direct hit.
Specifically, the billionaire Virgin founder plans to brave the worst of the powerful storm in his wine cellar.
“We are expecting to get the full force of the hurricane in around five hours’ time, when we will retreat to a concrete wine cellar under the Great House,” Branson wrote Wednesday.
Branson described the eve of the storm as “a night of howling wind and rain.” He added: “The atmosphere is eerie but beautiful.”
Branson is not alone on Necker Island. He was joined by “a great group of young people,” who played games and slept in two rooms.
“I haven’t had a sleepover quite like it since I was a kid,” Branson said.
Hurricane Irma is currently a Category 5 storm with maximum sustained winds of 185 mph at its core. The storm hit the Caribbean islands on Wednesday and is on path to hit parts of the British Virgin Islands.
Irma comes barely a week after Hurricane Harvey caused massive flooding in Texas.
Branson is known for having an adventurous streak. In 2012, he became the oldest person to kitesurf the English Channel. Branson has also said he intends to be on the first Virgin Galactic flight into suborbital space.
He purchased Necker Island for $180,000 in 1979. He later opened a luxury resort, which has been visited by a long list of celebrities.