On Tuesday, Britain’s wealthiest landowner, Gerald Cavendish Grosvenor, the 6th Duke of Westminster, died suddenly. His estimated net worth was $10.8 billion at the time of his death, and now his 25-year-old son stands to inherit everything.
The title of Duke of Westminster is a fairly recent one, established in the 19th-century by Queen Victoria. But the Grosvenor family has been in the property game for far longer.
In 1677, Grosvenor’s family made an acquisition of “500 acres of swamp, pasture, and orchards” in England, according to the company’s website cited by Forbes. After the family got a taste for land they never looked back. Currently, the Grosvenor Group holds property on five continents and reports more than $15 billion in assets under management.
So who will oversee the family fortune now that the duke is dead? His son, the 7th duke, of course. Hugh Grosvenor, a godfather to Prince George, immediately assumed the dukedom.
There isn’t a lot of public information out there about Hugh, who is surely now Britain’s most eligible bachelor. We do know that he studied “countryside management” at Newcastle University.
And that he had a rather extravagant 21st birthday party.
The party was held at Eaton Hall and reportedly cost £5m. He hosted some 800 guests, including Prince Harry, at the “black tie and neon” themed bash. Comedian Michael McIntyre and hip-hop duo Rizzle Kicks both preformed.
And the kicker? Guests were asked to donate to the young earl’s large wine collection.
He told the Chester Chronicle at the time: “The party was simply amazing – a birthday and a party I will never forget. It is the beginning of a new era in my life and I look forward to the challenges that lie ahead.”