Partly due to my Game of Thrones addiction and partly due to Prince Harry‘s good looks, I find the lives of those in the royal family to be utterly fascinating. With the snap of the finger, the butler presents hot tea and champagne on a silver platter with an assortment the well-assembled hors-d’oeuvres, right? Surely, that’s how it all works.
The assumption that the Queen Elizabeth II is wealthy would be an accurate one. She is the queen of England after all. More commonly, the curiosity surrounding the queen’s wealth comes more in regard to how much she really has and where all that money actually comes from. Queen Elizabeth II has amassed the majority of her fortune from the inheritance she received from her late mother, investments, and income from the Crown Estate (Sovereign Grant).
Currently, Queen Elizabeth II is estimated to have a net worth of $472 million. And with all that wealth, surely the queen knows how to drop some coin here and there to enjoy both a comfortable and lavish lifestyle. The longest reigning monarch does practice some modesty but also knows how to enjoy her fortune. Here’s how she’s been spending and investing her millions.
1. $23 per pair of socks
The queen wants what she wants. And can’t we all agree there is a certain amount of bliss that comes from slipping on a brand new pair of socks? From cotton to cashmere, the queen’s socks of choice are made by Corgi Hosiery Ltd. An entry-level pair costs $23 and the top of the line Prince of Wales hand-knit pair runs $209.
Next: What’s the queen’s favorite bubbly?
2. $104 per bottle of the queen’s favorite champagne
Pol Roger, the queen’s favorite champagne, isn’t the most expensive nor is the cheapest. And listen, folks, as the longest-reigning monarch of England, I think it’s fair for her majesty to enjoy a decent bottle of bubbly any time she pleases. Just between us, it’s rumored that the queen sips one glass of the tasty beverage every night before bed. Cheers!
Next: Hatters will hat!
3. $600+ on Rachel Trevor Morgan hats
On Saturday HM The Queen wore a Rachel Trevor Morgan pink felt hat with feather flower to the Qipco Champions race day at Ascot Racecource – worn with a Stewart Parvin tweed outfit . #racheltrevormorgan #millinery #hat #theQueen #HMQ #royal #royalty @ascotracecourse @stewart_parvin #couture #stewartparvin #ascot #qipco #horseraces #handcrafted #feathers #london #stjames
A wearer of many hats would be a gross understatement. But really, the queen wears a lot of hats. She’s donned thousands over the course of her reign. And it’s fair to say that her majesty knows how to complete a look with a little custom-made millinery. The conservative estimate for just one of Morgan’s pieces runs a minimum of around $600. As for a custom piece, it only goes up from there.
Next: Completing the queen’s look remains astonishingly expensive.
4. $2,000+ for Launer handbags
Queen Elizabeth II’s handbag of choice comes from London luxury handbag maker Launer. The queen’s handbags always match her ensemble, and rest assured they are not cheap! On average, each bag costs over $2,000. Word on the street claims the queen owns over 200 of them.
Next: Lavish and stylish travel go hand in hand.
5. $84,000 for a trip to Germany
Back in 2015, the queen with her husband Prince Philip traveled to Germany where they visited Bergen-Belsen concentration camp. Besides visiting the concentration camp, the queen and her husband met with German President Joachim Gauck, as well as survivors and liberators of the camp. Traveling with her husband, the queen seems to have spared no expense.
Next: The nitty-gritty of keeping everything in top shape ain’t cheap!
6. $786,000 for cleaning, laundry, and chores
Keeping the royal family and their palaces looking fresh and clean takes a lot of hands. From dry cleaning the queen’s clothing and keeping the palace tip-top, it’s no surprise that the cost of such chores gets pretty steep. On the other hand, it became common knowledge that in 2016 the queen was on the hunt for a live-in housekeeper and the pay was pretty stinking bad. How bad? Only $22,000 annual salary kind of bad.
Next: You won’t believe what the queen does for the citizens of Great Britain.
7. $1.3 million for stationery and stamps
Greetings! In no way would the queen of England have some run-of-the-mill stationery to send out to the Brits or her closest confidantes. If you have ever purchased stationery or had it made custom, then you know how pricey it is. Multiply that by a couple hundred thousand, and you’ve got a pretty penny of a bill for the creating, printing, and mailing stationery. Each year, the queen has cards sent to the British celebrating milestone birthdays and anniversaries. That’s cute, right?
Next: Locking down this deal saved the royal family big money.
8. $1.4 million for gas and electricity at royal properties
Phew! It takes a fortune to power Buckingham Palace. In 2016, the palace used 29.3 million kilowatts of energy, which cost over $2 million for the year. Luckily, the queen was able to negotiate a four-year fixed contract for the household’s energy consumption. The negotiation is estimated to save over $1 million.
Next: Everyone has to eat, but how much?
9. $1.8 million for food and drink
Garden parties galore! Each year, the queen hosts summer garden parties for thousands, honoring attendees for community service and contributions, along with war veterans. Beyond those garden parties, the queen hosts receptions for world diplomats visiting the U.K. It’s a wonder the cost of these gatherings isn’t more than $1.8 million.
Next: Moving an entourage around the world requires a pretty penny.
10. $2.7 million for planes, trains, and automobiles
Being tasked with transporting the monarch from point A to point B is a big job. Furthermore, it’s expensive to charter transportation. But it’s not just the monarch who’s being transported. The queen does not travel alone. An entourage of security and personnel come as a package deal.
Next: Who knew changing a light bulb would take so many people?
11. $5.6 million to maintain the royal property
Have you seen the size of Buckingham Palace? Boasting 775 rooms including 78 bathrooms, there must always be some kind of maintenance project in the works. Furthermore, maintaining the pristine lawn of the royal property is way more than one full-time job’s worth of work. With all the light bulbs that must be changed and the dusting of the furniture, a full-time staff for maintenance is required.
Next: Is it a bird? Is it a plane?
12. $10.4 million to lease a helicopter
Queen Elizabeth II leased a helicopter back in 2015 to make sure Prince William and the Dutchess of Cambridge were able to easily travel to engagements. The chopper was slated to live at the Royal Air Force Odiham helicopter hangar. Must be nice!
Next: Great Britain requires employees to be paid a living wage. Does the queen do her part?
13. $25.5 million to pay for the queen’s staff
All citizens of Great Britain should be receiving a living wage for their work. The queen’s staff has not always been well-paid though. Until recently, some staff members were not being paid a proper living wage. Thankfully, Elizabeth changed the pay grade. When it comes to staffing Buckingham Palace, there are so many needs — a duster, a butler, security, engineers, and housekeepers — just to name a few.
Next: This renovation has taxpayers’ jaws dropping.
14. $452 million to renovate Buckingham Palace
There’s a caveat to this expense because it’s taxpayer dollars being used. However, the decision of how that money is being allocated comes from the queen. The renovation taking place at Buckingham Palace has been a bit controversial — $452 million worth of controversy. There’s been pushback about how the queen is using taxpayers’ dollars. Opponents of the renovation believe that it is a misuse of the money.
Next: We know how she spends her money, but how does the queen invest it?
15. $13 million invested in offshore portfolios in Bermuda and Cayman Islands
In November 2017, documents were leaked regarding the queen’s investments in the offshore havens of Bermuda and the Cayman Islands. Questions were raised in regards to the legitimacy and legality of these investments, however, statements have been made assuring the public that the queen has done nothing improper. It’s lucrative to invest in these areas due to the lower tax liability. That alone may rile up some who believe the royal family already receives enough special treatment.
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