It's no secret that the super rich like to have the best of everything: classic cars, private jets, megahomes and megayachts, but the secret places they go to make these purchases will surprise you. We know there are businesses that cater to these wealthy connoisseurs' every need, but you may expect these purveyors of luxury to be in cities where billionaires live and play.
More billionaires live in Moscow, New York, Hong Kong, London and Istanbul than anywhere else in the world, according to Forbes. There are 349 billionaires with a total net worth of more than 1 trillion dollars in those cities alone.
But, if you're looking to buy a megayacht, forget Moscow. Want a million-dollar Ferrari? Don't take the private jet to Hong Kong. While shooting "Secret Lives of the Super Rich," CNBC visited some very unlikely places where the world's wealthiest go to drop boatloads of cash.
You've probably never heard of these eight tiny towns unless you are one of the few people that happen to live there—or you're super rich.
By Jessi Joseph
Posted 11 Sept. 2013
CNBC scores the ultimate VIP access to a world inhabited by only the wealthiest people. "Secret Lives of the Super Rich," this Wednesday Feb. 5 at 9 p.m. ET/PT.
Who visits: Super-rich jet-setters
When the super rich want to customize their private jets, one of the designers they turn to is Eric Roth at International Jet Interiors in Ronkonkoma, N.Y. Some of the wealthiest celebrities and CEOs in the country have been there in their private jets.
"We had one client who was a producer and he said, 'I'm going to go from coast to coast, and what I want to do is be able to edit my films on the fly,' " Roth said. "And that's exactly what we did."
The movie theater in the sky cost about $1 million, but that's really no big deal considering the tens of millions spent just to buy the plane.
Who visits: Super-rich car collectors
For most of us, shopping for a new car means heading down to the local dealership, but that obviously won't work for the super rich.
Some of the most expensive cars on the planet are sold at auctions, and the show that kicks off the season for well-heeled collectors is in Amelia Island. On one weekend in March, this small beach community off the coast of North Florida can make the Hamptons feel cheap.
One collector spent more than $4.5 million this year for a 1935 Duesenberg Model SJ Walker. When the dust finally settled from the car-buying frenzy, collectors had spent more than $26.8 million at the RM Auctions event and more than $28.1 million at the Gooding & Co. auction, bringing this year's total sales to nearly $55 million for the weekend.
Who visits: Super-rich Ferrari lovers
When super-rich car collectors want to have their classic Ferraris restored, one of their first calls is to Wayne Obry in Neenah, Wis. Billionaires are lining up to visit this rural town. Obry said his garage, Motion Products, has an 18-month waiting list, and no amount of money can get your car to the front of the line.
"Just because you have a couple of bucks, you can influence what we're doing? You can change the commitments I've made to my other billionaire customers? Doesn't happen," Obry said.
Who visits: Super-rich shopping for mega-yachts
Megayachts may be the ultimate luxury: Only 1 percent of the 1 percent are in this exclusive club. And if you're not a member, you've probably never heard of Aalsmeer, just outside of Amsterdam.
Some of the world's top yacht owners, including billionaire Larry Ellison, have gone to Feadship shipyards in Aalsmeer to have their yachts designed and built. (At 250 feet, Ellison's yacht, Musashi (pictured left), is nearly the length of a football field.)
Details about these supersized boats are supersecret, but CNBC got access to Feadship, where one yacht under construction is code-named Project Kiwi. According to the company, it is 150 feet long, will take more than 700 hours to complete and cost more than $40 million—pocket change for this mystery yachtsman.
Who visits: Super rich and paranoid
Population: About 5,000
Regular folk might not be able to survive a sharknado, but the super rich sure can. If it does start drizzling great whites, some wealthy preppers will be bunkered in $3 million condos in an undisclosed spot in the middle of the country.
Builder Larry Hall is putting up 11 units in a decommissioned missile silo that he said is bombproof. Though CNBC got to tour these luxe end-of-times bunkers, Hall asked that we not reveal their location for security reasons.
Hall said the compound will come complete with a pharmacy, pet park, video game center and pool. There's even a jail cell if one of the cooped-up, well-heeled residents needs a time-out.
The renovation isn't even finished, but Hall says all the units are sold out. So, if you want in, better jump on the waiting list for the No. 2 silo, which is in development.
Who visits: Super-rich horse hunters
Super-rich horse lovers from all over the world make their way to Saratoga Springs for the Fasig-Tipton yearling auction. For that one weekend in August, you can't swing a riding crop without hitting a multimillionaire. The auction attracts blue bloods willing to spend big on thoroughbreds with promising pedigrees.
This event is much more Christie's than cowboys, with pricey ponies replacing pricey paintings. The most expensive horse sold this year was a filly that went for more than $1.2 million. In six hours, 108 horses were sold for a total of $31.9 million.
Who visits: Super-rich race car drivers
The elite hit the Monticello Motor Club to blow the speed limit and blow off steam. They have no problem finding this tiny hamlet. It's about a two-hour drive from Manhattan, though some members told us they use the helipad or nearby airport to make the trip even faster.
Membership can cost as much as $125,000 and yearly dues are nearly $11,000 for top-level membership. Club President Ari Straus said members race cars that cost more than most houses.
"We have a member here with a Ferrari GTO," he said. "Current value on that car is probably $38.5 million, and he actually takes the car onto the track and does laps in it."
Who visits: Super-rich homebuyers
Don't let this "Jersey" town fool you. There are no Snookis or Pauly D's fist-pumping in 07620, one of the richest ZIP codes in the country, according to Forbes. The median home price is about $5.7 million, but one megamansion in this elite Manhattan suburb makes a few million dollars look like a steal.
Stone Mansion, a 42-room, 30,000 square-foot estate, is for sale for $49 million. The house takes an hour to tour, and its amenities are too numerous to list, but the highlights would be the movie theater, 4,000-bottle wine cellar, 65-foot outdoor pool and a ballroom trimmed in 18-karat gold.
It's an exclusive world filled with enormous fortunes, unimaginable extravagance and a cast of #SuperRich characters with one thing in common: a voracious appetite for success, status and the best of the best.
CNBC unlocks the mansion gates and scores you the ultimate VIP access to a world inhabited by the wealthiest people on the planet. "Secret Lives of the Super Rich," only on CNBC ... you can't afford to miss it.