What would you do if you won Dh200m?

Luxury penthouses, private jets, yachts, holidays and islands are all within reach of jackpot winners

Winning hundreds of millions in the lottery can open up a world of possibilities. Getty
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What does winning Dh200 million ($54.4 million) in a prize draw make you? An overnight millionaire.

But what can Dh200 million buy you? That’s trickier to answer, with so many asset classes to choose from.

Emirates Draw announced this week that the first grand prize winner of 2023 could take home a monumental Dh200 million on January 1 after a rollover from last week.

This is the largest grand prize in the Middle East, Africa and Asia, organisers said. The event has made cumulative payouts of more than Dh65 million so far.

We have compiled a list of what to spend and invest in if you win this life-changing sum.

Luxury property

You can buy not one, but four four-bedroom duplex waterfront apartments in luxury developer Omniyat’s The Residences, The Dorchester Collection in Dubai’s Business Bay, for Dh50 million each, according to real estate broker Better Homes.

Each of these swanky apartments, designed by architect Foster & Partners, are about 7,900 square feet.

Or, you could buy a six-bedroom villa of 30,000 square feet in the L Sector of Emirates Hills for Dh190 million, a top floor four-bedroom, four-level penthouse with a private lap pool in Volante, Business Bay for Dh183.6 million, a One & Only Resort triplex penthouse in Dubai’s Za’abeel neighbourhood for Dh200 million, or a six-bedroom triplex penthouse in Raffles The Palm for Dh153 million, according to Luxhabitat Sotheby's International Realty.

The Residences Dorchester Collection Dubai Penthouse Hover. Courtesy Omniyat

Travel the world

If the winner likes adventure and exploration, they’ll want to travel.

Star Alliance’s Round the World ticket is an international, multi-flight tour that lets passengers travel 40,075 kilometres around the globe.

Although prices vary for each trip depending on which countries you choose, economy trips start at about Dh14,690, with premium economy at Dh25,700, business class at Dh33,000 and first class at Dh51,400 for itineraries starting and ending in the US, according to the Star Alliance booking tool.

Amphibious car

These cars cost upwards of Dh1 million, says Vijay Valecha, chief investment officer at Century Financial.

“Imagine the thrill of entering the water at a slow speed of 20 kilometres an hour — the vehicle switches from land use to marine use in a few seconds and vice versa,” he says.

Jimmy Choo shoes, Patek Philippe watch

Lottery winners need to look their best.

Spending Dh200 million on Jimmy Choo shoes, which retail for about Dh5,500, would snag the winner 36,300 pairs.

They can also buy a Patek Philippe Nautilus fully loaded rose gold diamond set watch for Dh2.6 million, Mr Valecha says.

Unique licence plate

The super-rich pay millions to acquire special or personalised licence plates and regard them as a statement of individuality or an investment.

You can spend Dh89 million on an MM California licence plate, the most expensive in the world, according to a report by lifestyle magazine Luxe Digital.

It is one of only 35 two-letter plates, but is especially rare because the letters are the same. It comes with the added bonus of buying its matching non-fungible token.

You can also consider buying the F1, UK licence plate for Dh73.5 million, according to the Luxe Digital report. The current owner, car designer Afzal Khan has the plate gracing his Bugatti Veyron.

Mr Khan bought the plate in 2008 from the Essex County Council in England. Previously owned by a councilman who had it on his Volvo, Khan paid £440,000 ($573,640).

Mr Khan has turned down several multimillion-dollar offers for the plate and is not looking to sell it, “unless there is an absolutely incredible offer”, his website says.

The super-rich pay millions to acquire special or personalised licence plates and regard them as a statement of individuality or an investment. Photo: RTA

Private jet

In today’s market, most private jets are priced between Dh18 million and Dh110 million, according to sales listing platform AV Buyer.

On the used aircraft market, older jets have depreciated to below Dh7 million, and even less than Dh3.67 million following years of depreciation.

Stay in one of the world’s most luxurious hotels

You can stay in a diplomatic three-bedroom suite, which costs Dh20,500 a night, in Dubai's Burj Al Arab, one of the world’s most luxurious hotels, for 8,900 nights.

A private yacht

The lottery winner can buy a customised Cantieri Navale Ferrari yacht, which costs more than Dh100 million, Mr Valecha says.

The vessel can accommodate up to 50 guests.

Life on board The World, the largest private residential ship — in pictures

An apartment on a globe-trotting residential yacht

If you want to avoid the hassle of owning a private yacht, the next best option is to buy an apartment on The World, the largest residential ship, which goes on expeditions around the globe.

Apartments on board are priced from Dh7 million to Dh55 million. This price tag also gives you access to the most remote destinations, Michelin-level dining and health and wellness services on the ship.

A private island

You can buy a man-made island in Nakheel’s The World development in Dubai for between Dh77 million and Dh128 million, according to an aggregate of listings on Property Finder.

The buyer can choose to build either a private mansion or a hotel or resort on the island, the listings say.

However, Better Homes says it is possible to buy not one, but two man-made islands on The World Islands for Dh80 million and then use the rest of your money for renovations, furniture and personal touches.

Mukesh Ambani, chairman of Reliance Industries, spent Dh367 million on his daughter Isha's wedding celebration in 2018. Reuters

Spend on an opulent wedding

When money is not a concern, you can splurge Dh367 million on a wedding, which is what India's second richest man, Mukesh Ambani, chairman of Reliance Industries, spent on the wedding celebration for his daughter, Isha, who married Anand Piramal in December 2018.

The week-long extravagant event included a private concert by Beyoncé at the Oberoi Udaivilas hotel, a food donation to the city of Udaipur to give 5,100 people three meals a day for four days, accommodation at five five-star hotels, and more than 100 chartered flights for guests.

Invest, pay off debt and donate to charity

Experts recommend spreading wealth across a variety of investments and asset classes. These assets could include property, stocks, government bonds and fixed-income products, for example.

"Establish a single family office under the jurisdiction of DIFC or Abu Dhabi Global Market and hire a team of experienced investment managers to make diversified investments," suggests Sharad Nair, vice chairman of Abalone Capital.

"Action across global equity trading (passive/active) options, fixed income, private equity, real estate and venture capital executed with appropriate risk management can yield returns of 23 per cent."

Sweepstakes winners must also put away money for retirement and save for an emergency fund worth three to six months of expenses.

Investing Dh200 million in a business or property will also qualify you for a golden visa in the UAE, Mr Nair adds.

Eliminating large debts incurring high interest rates should also be your focus when you come into a large sum of money as it will free up funds and make your financial decisions much easier.

Philanthropy should be factored into your financial plan, because research shows that giving to charity in terms of both time and/or money can offer a great deal of happiness and increase overall well-being.

How to spend Dh200 million

  • Buy luxury property
  • Travel the world
  • Buy an amphibious car
  • Buy Jimmy Choo shoes, Patek Philippe watch
  • Buy a unique licence plate
  • Buy a private jet
  • Stay at one of the world’s most luxurious hotels
  • Buy a private yacht
  • Buy an apartment on a globe-trotting residential yacht
  • Buy a private island
  • Spend on a lavish wedding
  • Invest, pay off debt and donate to charity
Updated: December 30, 2022, 5:37 AM