Billionaire CEO lives in caravan park

Billionaire Tony Hsieh lives in this caravan. Source: ABC News
Billionaire Tony Hsieh lives in this caravan. Source: ABC News

WITH a net worth of more than $1 billion ($US780 million), Tony Hsieh could live wherever he wants.

Instead, the chief executive of Zappos, the online shoe retailer now owned by Amazon, prefers to live in a 22 square metre Airstream trailer in a Las Vegas caravan park that costs less than $1360 ($US1000) a month.

"I just love it because there's so many random, amazing things that happen around the campfire at night," he told NPR. "I think of it as the world's largest living room."

The 43-year-old, known for his eccentric management style, said he valued experiences over possessions, citing a conversation with a friend where they discussed what one item they would save if their house was on fire.

"My phone, maybe?" he said.

"Sometimes people ask me what my definition of success is, and for me it's getting to the point where you're truly OK with losing everything you have."

Hsieh bought the empty lot for the caravan park in 2014 - along with another lot a few blocks away where be built recycled shipping container offices for small businesses - as part of his $475 million ($US350 million) investment to rebuild downtown Las Vegas.

The community, which sits next to a liquor store, consists of about 20 trailers and 10 small houses.

Hsieh says it’s his favourite home so far. Picture: ABC News
Hsieh says it’s his favourite home so far. Picture: ABC News

"I love it at night here. There's campfires going. All these lights, sometimes musicians playing music, just jamming together, people cooking. I really like the unpredictability and randomness of it."

The park was partly inspired by the Burning Man festival for its communal nature and randomness, he told Las Vegas Weekly.

"We want people to contribute more than they take," he said.

"For some people, it might be cooking for everyone. For others it might be playing music."

Hsieh isn't the only billionaire embracing frugal living.

Berkshire Hathaway chief executive Warren Buffett famously eats breakfast at McDonald's every day and still lives in the family home he bought in 1958.

Topics:  billionaire caravan park

News Corp Australia

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