How to Get the Silicon Valley Billionaire Lifestyle

They might be only a handful of individuals compared to the total population, but the billionaires of Silicon Valley have certainly know how to live large. These darlings of the Forbes 400 are all about making—and spending—enormous amounts of money every single year.

Thoreau once wrote, “Wealth is the ability to fully experience life.” The man who wrote Civil Disobedience might have had a certain standard for a life fully experienced, but chances are it didn’t include scooting around the globe in one’s $50 million Gulfstream jet. Yet Silicon Valley’s wealthiest citizens have certainly embraced the letter, if not the spirit, of Thoreau’s dictum, and in doing so they create a sort of micro-economy based on their personal fortunes.

For example, the average billionaire is far too consumed with their next big business idea or trip around the globe to bother with such quotidian matters as shopping or food preparation. Fortunately, they can call on services such as Private Chefs, Inc. or International Services Agency (ISA) to staff their homes, yachts, or, yes, their personal jet. For just $60,000 to $140,000 a year (plus relevant fees), you can hire a private chef who will shop for, cook, and serve fresh (and even organic, on request) food for you and your family. Sure beats reheating a microwave burrito, eh?

It’s not all about luxury homes, jets, and food, however. Bringing home a kingdom’s worth of bacon means you also need someone to help you keep track of it—and protect it. That’s where hiring a wealth manager (or an entire personal financial team) comes into play. These professionals will manage all of your wealth, review and handle your expenses, and take care of your tax needs, all while making sure your total assets are protected and ensuring your overall worth continues to grow. Since these professionals usually collect around one percent of the money they manage as a fee, chances are more than a few have wealth managers of their own.

Beyond fine food, fun, and wealth management, the richest of the rich also have the cash to pay for personal matchmaking, family planning, and domestic services. Money may not buy happiness, it seems, but it sure goes a long way toward everything else.

Think you’ve got what it takes to become the next titan of tech, with the billions to match? Better start filling out that budget now (or better yet, have your personal financial manager do it). Just don’t let it interrupt your meeting with the Gulfstream dealer.

Silicon Valley Billionaire

How to Get the Silicon Valley Billionaire Lifestyle

You’ve just had your startup acquired for an amount you never thought possible, and now you find yourself with more money than you know what to do with. You can choose to live modestly like Mark Zuckerberg or live large like most Silicon Valley billionaires. Either way, they will all agree that you will have a lot less time to do things for yourself. Use this guide to help you outsource all the little things so you can enjoy your piles of cash.

Big Time Financing

Now that you have reached billionaire status you will want to invest your money intelligently to ensure that it doesn’t all disappear.

  • Hire a Personal Financial Officer to handle your investments and finances.
  • A team of financial officers will take care of every part of your finances, certain team members will take care of certain entities.
  • These teams can work for one client or multiple clients at once.
    • What they do:
      • Assist with figuring out how to pass your fortune on to family
      • Find ways around taxes
      • Protect your assets from creditors
      • Handle charitable contributions
      • Diversify your property and other investments
      • Handle travel expenses
      • Pay monthly bills
  • This will cost you around 1% of what you bring them per year.
    • If you have them manage $50 million of your wealth it will cost around $500,000.

Outsource Your Kitchen

If your aren’t a master in the kitchen your best bet is to hire a private or personal chef. Yes, they sound the same, but they are very different.

  • Private chefs
    • Usually employed full-time by one client, and often live in the client’s home
    • Meals are fresh, no freezing and reheating involved
    • They work with housekeepers and kitchen helpers
    • They work with you to plan your menu then shop for the groceries and prep the meal
    • Meals are usually gourmet and multi-course
    • They usually work for one family
    • Specialize in dinner parties and events
  • Personal chefs
    • Cook for more than one family or individual
    • Shop for client’s groceries weekly and prep meals at their home
    • They prepare multiple meals for the week, store them in the freezer or refrigerator and provide reheating instructions
  • Side note
    • Steve and Laurene Powell Jobs had their own chef, and the company they used to find the perfect chef (ISA Staffing) shared some stories about their experience.
      • He asked for the “best Chef out there” and was not shy about telling them exactly what he wanted.
      • His perfect chef cooked a culinary diet for him and his wife, whatever Laurene wanted for their children, had to coordinate with the Apple chef and know how to grow and care for an organic garden.

Luxurious Travelling

If you’ve got the money to spend on vacations, you might as well go big! About 20% of private jet travelers spend an average of $100,000 on at least one adventurous trip a year.

  • Have an exclusive travel agency or concierge service plan your lavish vacation.
    • A New York travel advisor, Bill Fischer, charges new clients a one-time $100,000 initiation fee.
      • Annual service fees are $25,000
    • They will get you what you want, when you want it.
      • These services arrange authentic, once in a lifetime experiences for you and your family.
      • One of Fischer’s clients needed a three-bedroom suite and the hotel only had two-bedroom suites.
        • He suggested they knock down some walls, and they did!
  • Airport Troubles
    • Skip the lines at the airport and take a private jet. If you aren’t ready to purchase your own jet you have a couple of options.
      • Charter a Jet:
        • You can charter a Gulfstream V for a weekend trip from NYC to San Francisco for around $100,000. This includes transportation to and from the airport, in a helicopter.
      • Invest in NetJets:
        • Become a shareowner in the company and get from 50 hours to 400 hours of flying per year.
          • 50 hours = $550,000
          • 400 hours = $4.4 million
          • Monthly fees range from $9,600 – $60,000
        • If you don’t want the commitment, purchase a Private Jet Card with 25 flying hours for about $6,000 per hour.
    • If you don’t bypass the airports, you can still bypass the lines.
      • Strong Travel Services provides someone to escort you through the all the lines at the airport, customs included.
      • Cost is between $200-$500 and can save you hours.
  • Superyachts
    • If you aren’t ready to own a superyacht and handle all of the maintenance yourself, you can rent luxurious superyachts when you want to sail away.
      • You can rent superyachts ranging from 180 to 245 feet (55 – 75 meters) and $185,000 – $707,000 (€140,000 – €530,000) per week.
      • These superyachts have pools, jacuzzis, bars, luxurious staterooms, jet skis, gyms, dance floors, spas and more luxurious amenities.
    • Another option would be to rent a fellow Silicon Valley billionaire’s superyacht.
      • Rent Tom Perkins’ yacht for around $480,000 per week (£300,000).
      • The Maltese Falcon yacht can accommodate 16 guests and has a crew of 18.
      • There are four dinghies, two windsurfers and one jet ski.

Side note:

Why travel alone on these luxurious adventures? Invite your friends! You could do like Facebook founder Eduardo Saverin and fly your friends from Singapore to St Topez, treat everyone to the $8,000 per night Hotel Byblos then go clubbing all night.

Personal Shopping in Style

Don’t have time to go shopping? Pay someone to do it for you!

  • A personal shopper will create a style for you and take care of all of your shopping needs.
  • They can help you find one perfect outfit or an entire new wardrobe to fit your new lifestyle.
  • Feel like shopping with them in a different city? They can travel and shop with you.
  • Personal shoppers usually charge about 10% of whatever you purchase.

Looking for Love

Being a billionaire usually means more work than play, leaving little time to look for love.

  • Use a millionaire (or billionaire) matchmaking service that can help you find love.
    • Some of these services are confidential, if that is something you are interested in, make sure they offer it.
    • They put the women (or men) through in-depth interviews and screening processes.
    • These services aren’t for flings, but those truly interested in finding love.
  • Some well-known matchmakers:
    • Virginia Sweetingham’s Gray and Farrar International
      • Prices range from $15,000 to $93,000
    • Patti Stanger’s Millionaire’s Club
      • Membership prices range from $45,000 – $250,000
    • Kelleher International
      • Prices range from $6,500 – $100,000
  • There is even a matchmaker whose company is based on finding love for the wealthy and successful men of Silicon Valley.
    • Amy Anderson’s prices range from $1,000 – $50,000, some packages even include wardrobe consultation.

Popping the Question

When the love of your life pops the question, it is a moment you will never forget, and now marriage proposal planners are helping to make that moment even more special.

  • If you simply don’t have enough time to plan the proposal, or if you just want it to be out of this world, you can outsource the entire process.
  • The process:
    • You provide the planner with details of your love story and other important info.
    • Choose from custom proposal ideas
    • They will put everything together including the location and vendors.
    • You show up and pop the question!
  • Prices can range from about $100 – $12,000.

Side note:

Go big and take an idea from Sean Parker’s wedding: he spent about $10 million to have builders construct a pond, fake ruins and bring tons of potted plants into an ancient grove in the California Redwoods known as Big Spur.

Help With Parenting

You can outsource nearly everything involved in parenting, from having the baby to school shopping and everything in between.

  • Outsource the pregnancy
    • If you can’t have a baby yourself, or you just don’t want to, you can have someone else carry the baby for you.
    • Paid surrogacy is not legal in most states, but you can use a service like Intended Parents.
    • You will be paying for lawyer fees, hospital visits, maternity clothes for your surrogate, and anything else to make your surrogate more comfortable during the pregnancy (that includes ice cream!).
    • This will cost you about $80,000 (or more).
  • Live-in Nanny
    • You can have a full-time nanny that helps you care for the baby 24 hours a day.
      • They do everything from change diapers to burping the baby.
      • This can cost you at least $165,000 per year.
    • Once your child is older, the live-in nanny will do everything from pack lunches to attending parent-teacher conferences.
      • A live-in nanny for 17 years will cost around $1,850,000.
  • Side note:
  • If you don’t want to be away from your baby all day, you could also bring him to work! Yahoo CEO, Marissa Mayer, built a nursery next to her office for her full-time nanny and baby boy.
  • Babyproofing
  • Once your child is on the move you will need corner bumpers, baby gates, cabinet locks…and the list goes on.
  • To make sure it is done right, outsource it to a babyproofing specialist.
  • They will babyproof your home from floor to ceiling, some even offer CPR and car seat training.
  • Costs around $1,200
  • Potty Training
  • Yes, you can even outsource this part of your child’s life.
  • For around $3,700 an instructor will stay with your for two weeks while potty training your toddler.
  • Shopping
  • Hate school shopping? Pay a personal shopper to take your child shopping for new clothes.
  • Some will even sort through their old clothes to figure out what they need.
  • Paying someone for two days every season will cost about $40,000 over 18 years.
  • Having someone sort through their old clothes, figure out what they need then take them shopping can run you about $40,000 over 18 years (not including the cost of the clothes).

Personal Assistants

You will probably be busy working on your next startup or travelling the world, so you will not have time for the small daily tasks.

  • Hire a personal assistant to take care of everything from managing your social media profiles and emails to taking care of your dry cleaning and walking your dog.
  • Any task that you didn’t outsource from the list above, your personal assistant can help with.
  • You will be paying upwards of $100,000 plus bonuses and other perks.


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