Sir Richard Branson’s $70 million Caribbean island home was struck by lightning and battered by winds caused by Hurricane Irene, which continues to wreak havoc in the Caribbean. From this once paradise on earth, and hell now, Kate Winslet has emerged as a hero. Branson says the Oscar-winning actress carried his 90-years-old mother, Eve from the house while it was still ablaze. He joked that Winslet was wondering when a director was going to shout ‘CUT!‘
Thank you for all your kind messages after the fire on Necker, Branson wrote on his blog. We’re thankful that everyone is ok. Around 20 people were in the house and they all managed to get out and they are all fine.
Branson’s 29-year old daughter, Holly, was due to get married there this winter. Despite the destruction, Branson says, he still hopes to play host.
We’ll make sure that Necker Island is back and ready for her wedding, so we’ve got something to aim for at Christmas-time this year. … Necker is our home … and it will be a beautiful island again. We’ve just got to rebuild the Great House. Fortunately the rest of the island survived, and we’ll make sure it was as beautiful as it was before.
Branson bought the island in the early 1980s. It is part of the British Virgin Islands. Each bedroom in the house has its own balcony, king-size bed and en-suite bathroom. The island can be hired privately for $54,500 a night.