An analysis using data from NetJets, the private-jet company, and studies from Wealth-X, the wealth research firm, offers a look at the annual flight path of this elite traveling circus. It starts in January in St. Bart's, with the New Year's Eve party thrown by the oil billionaire Roman Abramovich on his 70-acre estate, with top celebrities and business and media titans in attendance, and performances by bands like the Red Hot Chili Peppers. After that, it's on to the World Economic Forum in Davos, then the Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, where this year politicians like Tony Blair and Wesley Clark, along with billionaire hedge fund and private equity chiefs like Ken Griffin and Leon Black, chatted about the global economy.
The art auctions in New York in May kick off the spring. Then it's back to Europe for the Cannes International Film Festival, the Monaco Grand Prix, Art Basel and the Royal Ascot horse race in Britain. In the summer, the wealthy disperse to the Hamptons, Nantucket, the South of France and other resorts. A conga line of megayachts rolls through the Mediterranean from France to Italy, including David Geffen's 453-foot Rising Sun and the vodka magnate Yuri Shefler's 436-foot Serene.
In late August, the car-loving rich head to Pebble Beach for the Concours d'Elegance auto show and auctions, where last year a vintage Ferrari sold for $38 million. Then it's back to New York for the Clinton Global Initiative for philanthropy mixed with hobnobbing, with swings back and forth across the Atlantic for the Frieze London art fair, the fall auctions in New York and Art Basel Miami Beach.