Jeff Bezos and Lauren Sanchez have recently invested in an extravagant venture: a ‘10,000-Year Clock’ constructed within a mountain.
For a couple accustomed to having everything and always seeking more, Jeff Bezos and Lauren Sanchez have directed some of their considerable wealth towards a distinctive project: an underground clock embedded deep within the West Texas mountain range. According to Sanchez, the “10,000-Year Clock” serves as a means for her and her future husband, the second wealthiest individual globally, to contemplate the future. During a helicopter tour of Bezos’ West Texas ranch, one of several opulent properties in his approximately $500 million real estate portfolio, Sanchez shared insights about the clock with a Vogue writer.
On their ranch, Bezos and Sanchez host holiday gatherings for their extended, blended family, and Bezos launches rockets from his Blue Origin space facility, as per Vogue. The West Texas property features a family compound centered around a two-story main residence and a swimming pool designed to resemble a pond with rocky banks, according to Vogue writer Chloe Malle, who is Candice Bergen’s daughter.
Additionally, Bezos recently acquired two adjacent mansions, valued at a combined $147 million, on South Florida’s Indian Creek Island, also known as the “Billionaire Bunker,” as reported by Insider. Noteworthy neighbors include recently divorced Tom Brady and the controversial former White House aides Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump, the latter of whom Sanchez socialized with at Kim Kardashian’s October birthday celebration. Bezos, with an estimated net worth of $160 billion, recently announced on Instagram that he and Sanchez are relocating from their long-time residence in Seattle to make Miami their new home base, as reported by Insider.
Despite this, Sanchez can maintain her image as a philanthropic figure in Los Angeles, according to Vogue. This is because she and Bezos also own a Tudor mansion in Beverly Hills valued at $165 million, as reported by the New York Post. Over the weekend, their friends Barry Diller and Diane von Furstenberg hosted a second star-studded engagement party for them at their Beverly Hills mansion, with celebrity guests including Kris Jenner and her daughters Kim and Khloe Kardashian.
Meanwhile, in West Texas, Sanchez and Bezos participated in a glamorous photoshoot for Vogue’s December cover story, captured by celebrity photographer Annie Leibovitz. One image features Sanchez and Bezos, the latter in a cowboy hat, sitting closely in a pickup truck, while another depicts Sanchez in a red-sequined Dolce and Gabbana gown, descending a spiral staircase into the underground complex housing the 10,000-Year Clock.
Noah Kirsch, The Daily Beast’s “wealth and power reporter,” expressed confusion about the clock, situated 500 feet underground, deeming it a somewhat perplexing endeavor. Kirsch also remarked that the Vogue cover story about Sanchez and her conspicuous consumption with Bezos appeared to be intentionally provocative, potentially inciting criticism from the “eat the rich crowd.”
In the story, Sanchez brushes off questions about whether she and Bezos are eco-hypocrites. The couple promote themselves as dedicated environmentalists with their Earth Fund, a $10 billion commitment to climate solutions. But it’s evident that the couple’s lifestyle choices also create a massive carbon footprint. Like other ultra-rich people, they enjoy their multiple mansions and their private jet travel. At least their super-yacht Koru is a sailing vessel, but Sanchez also likes to get around by flying her own helicopter, as she did when she took the Vogue writer to see the 10,000-Year Clock.
Malle described how Sanchez landed the helicopter, on the side of the Sierra Diablo mountains, so that the two could descend into the mouth of a cliff to explore the clock. Sanchez insisted that they go all the way to the bottom, to get a better sense of “the engineering feat envisioned with next generations in mind.”
For the website for the 10,000-Year Clock, Bezos said he was working with the its “father,” inventor, entrepreneur and computer scientist Danny Hillis, who pioneered parallel computers and their use in artificial intelligence. Other partners in the endeavor include the San Francisco-based Long Now Foundation, which was created to foster “long-term” thinking with this “Clock of the Long Now,” “an immense, mechanical monument.”
Malle reported that it took over a year to drill 500 feet into solid limestone and quartz to create the space for the clock, and two years for a diamond-cutting robot to slice stairs into the stone. Inside, enormous titanium and stainless gears look like parts to the inside of a giant wristwatch and showcase a 10,000 pound bronze-cased concrete pendulum, Malle reported.
Sanchez tried to explain the concept of the clock, telling Malle that there are five metal anniversary displays that will function like traditional cuckoo clocks chiming at one year, 10 years, 100 years, 1,000 years, and 10,000 years. Bezos probably explained it a bit better by saying that the clock will tick once a year, with its century hand advancing once every 100 years. The clock should keep time for the next 10,000 years, becoming “a symbol” and “an icon for long-term thinking,” Bezos said.
If the concept remains “a bit confusing,” as the Daily Beast reported, Sanchez suggested a more immediate use for the clock, one that could include a visit by the Kardashians and her other celebrity friends. She told the Vogue writer: “Wouldn’t it be cool to have a Halloween party here?”