15 Most Expensive Buildings in the World

Marina Bay Sands, Singapore
Marina Bay Sands, Singapore (Source: WallpaperSafari)

15 Most Expensive Buildings in the World!

First thing first, a building is a structure with a roof and walls standing permanently in one place.

It comes in various shapes and sizes and has been adapted throughout history for factors such as ground conditions, land prices, prestige, specific use, and aesthetic reasons.

Humanity has taken building construction to the next level with advancements in science, technology, and materials.

Home Insurance Building in Chicago
Home Insurance Building in Chicago (Source: Chicago Tribune)

Did you know that the world’s first skyscraper was the Home Insurance Building in Chicago?

It was the first building to use a curtain wall construction on a steel frame and was completed in 1885.

Today, the world’s most expensive buildings include commercial buildings, luxury hotels, skyscrapers, and residential buildings.

Let’s not waste any more of your time and get into the details, but first, please check the quick overview.

Quick Overview

Building Country Construction Cost
15. Venetian Macau Macau $2.40 Billion
14. Wynn Resort United States $2.70 Billion
13. Palace of the Parliament Romania $3 Billion
12. Emirates Palace United Arab Emirates $3 Billion
11. Lotte World Tower South Korea $3.11 Billion
10. One World Trade Center United States $3.80 Billion
9. The Cosmopolitan United States $4.10 Billion
8. Wynn Palace Macau $4.2 Billion
7. Resorts World Sentosa Singapore $4.93 Billion
6. Apple Park United States $5 Billion
5. Marina Bay Sands Singapore $5.50 Billion
4. SoFi Stadium United States $5.5 Billion
3. Željava Air Base Croatia $6 Billion
2. Abraj Al Bait Saudi Arabia $16 Billion
1. The Great Mosque of Mecca or Masjid al-Haram  Saudi Arabia $100 Billion

#15 Venetian Macau

The 39-story building located in Macau’s Cotai Strip is a hotel and casino resort owned by the American Las Vegas Sands.

It has 10.5 million square feet of floor space.

The resort building features 3,000 rooms, 1.6 million square feet of retail space, 1.2 million square feet of convention space, and 550,000 square feet of casino space.

Venetian Macau
Venetian Macau (Source: booking.com Booking.com)

It is the largest single-structure hotel in Asia and the second-largest casino on the planet.

The $2.40 billion resort has been entangled in several controversies over the years.

In 2010, it was reported that authorities had found over 100 prostitutes inside the casino.

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#14 Wynn Resort

Named after the casino developer Steve Wynn, Wynn Resort is a luxurious resort and casino located on the Las Vegas Strip in Paradise, Nevada.

The 45-floor, 187 m/ 614 feet resort covers the area of 215 acres or 87 ha.

The 2,716 rooms resort features 560,620 square feet of the convention center, 111,000 square feet of casino, and 13,564 square feet of retail space.

Moreover, the building features a curtain waterfall behind a mountain that falls into 3 acres lake.

Wynn Resort Las Vegas, Nevada
Wynn Resort Las Vegas, Nevada (Source: Der Las Vegas Blog)

Wynn was the tallest resort building on the strip at its opening.

Similarly, it was the first resort to provide Amazon Echo in all rooms, connected to the room’s electronic systems and lighting.

The construction cost of the resort was over $2.70 billion.

#13 Palace of the Parliament

Located atop Dealul Spirii in Bucharest, Romania, the Palace of the Parliament is the seat of the Parliament of Romania.

It was designed by Anca Pentrescu and more than 700 architects team.

The whole project took 13 years to complete, beginning in 1984.

It has a total floor area of 3.93 million square feet and a height of 276 feet.

Palace of the Parliament in
Palace of the Parliament, Romania (Source: Thrillist)

The second largest administrative building in the world is also the heaviest in the world, weighing close to 4.10 million tonnes.

Moreover, the building rakes in more than $6 million in cost of electricity, heating, and lighting, which can be comparable to the cost of powering a medium-sized city.

The construction cost of the structure was a staggering $3 billion.

#12 Emirates Palace

The luxurious five-star hotel located in Abu Dhabi, UAE, was designed by WATG Architect.

It consists of a total of 390 residences, including 22 residential suites and 92 suites.

Most of the rooms in the Palace are furnished in marble and gold.

Emirates Palace
Emirates Palace, Abu Dhabi, UAE (Source: Pickyourtrail.com)

In total, the building features over 40 meeting rooms, two spa facilities, two helipads, a 1.3 km long beach, international restaurants, and various branded shops.

On 24th October 2008, American singer Christiana Aguilera performed at the facility as part of her Back To Basics Tour.

More than 20,000 people attended the live performance.

The total construction cost of the building was $3 billion.

#11 Lotte World Tower

Lotte World Tower is located at Sincheon-dong, Songpa District, Seoul, South Korea.

The 555.7-meter (1,823 ft.) the 123-story skyscraper is currently the eleventh tallest building on the planet.

The tallest building in South Korea is also the first 100-story building and was the fourth-highest tower in the world when it was completed.

Lotte World Tower, Seoul, South Korea
Lotte World Tower, Seoul, South Korea (Source: ArchDaily)

It was officially opened on April 3rd, 2017.

Construction of the roof alone used 3,000 tons of steel parts and a 64-t tower crane with GPS alignment systems.

The total construction cost of the building was $3.11 billion.

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#10 One World Trade Center

The tallest structure in the United States, One World Trade Center, was designed by David Childs of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill.

The building is located at 285 Fulton St, New York, NY 10007, United States.

Similarly, it is the seventh tallest building in the world and the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere.

One World Trade Center
One World Trade Center, New York, United States (Source: Conde Nast Traveler)

The structure shares the same name as the North Tower destroyed in the September 11, 2001, 9/11 terrorist attack.

With a total construction cost of $3.80 billion, it is one of the most expensive buildings in the world.

#9 The Cosmopolitan

The Cosmopolitan building or commonly referred to as The Cosmo is a luxury resort hotel and casino located just south of the Bellagio on the west of Las Vegas Boulevard.

It consists of two high-rise towers, both of which stand 184 meters tall.

The Cosmopolitan Building, Las Vegas, United States
The Cosmopolitan Building, Las Vegas, United States (Source: Arquitectonica)

Valued at $4.10 billion, the building features a total of 3,027 rooms, 300,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space, 110,000 square feet of casino, and 150,000 square feet of meeting and convention space.

The building was the setting for Top Chef Masters Season 4 and The Killer’s music video for “Shot at the Night.”

In April of 2022, the building made headlines when a security staff removed a transgender guest from the ladies room, took a photo of her, and said that she would be banned for life if she did not vacate the premises.

#8 Wynn Palace

The recipient of most Forbes Travel Guide Five Star Awards more than any other building in the world, Wynn Palace is located in Cotai, Macau.

The building features 424,000 square feet of casino space, 28 story hotel with over 1,706 rooms, the largest spa in Macau, and 13 casual dining restaurants.

Wynn Palace
Wynn Palace, Cotai, Macau (Source: Kayak)

Just like the interiors, the exterior of the building also stands out among its competitors with features such as an aerial transport system with gondolas.

Similarly, the 288,290 square feet performance lake at the entrance is a choreographed dancing fountain with 1,000 jets and 2,000 lights synchronized to numerous western, Chinese, and Broadway musical and classical songs.

The construction cost of the building was a whopping $4.2 billion.

#7 Resorts World Sentosa

The $4.93 billion integrated resort located on the island of Sentosa, off the southern coast of Singapore, Resorts World Sentosa, was developed by Genting Singapore.

The building sits on approximately 120 acres (50 hectares) of land and employs over 15,000 people.

It is probably most famous for two key attractions; a Universal Studios Singapore theme park and the world’s second-largest oceanarium S.E.A Aquarium.

Most Expensive Buildings in the World- Resort World Sentosa
Resort World Sentosa, Singapore (Source: Cvent)

Moreover, six hotels in the building offer 1,840 total rooms for accommodation.

Interestingly, RWS was fined for two violations by the Casino Regulatory Authority in May 2011.

The total fine amount was approximately $425,000 (S$530,000).

#6 Apple Park

Located in Cupertino, California, United States, Apple Park is the corporate headquarters of Apple Inc.

Nicknamed “the spaceship,” the main building’s scale and circular grounds caper was designed by English architect Norman Foster.

The building sits on 360 acres of land and houses over 12,000 employees.

Most Expensive Buildings in the World- Apple Park
Apple Park, Cupertino, California, United States (Source: Smart Campus Cloud Network)

Apple’s then CEO, late Steve Jobs, wanted it to be more like a natural park and less like a business park which is why 80% of the site consists of green space planted with drought-resistant trees.

Also, the center court of the main building features an artificial pond.

The nominal cost for the ring-shaped building is approximately $5 billion.

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#5 Marina Bay, Sands

An integrated resort in front of Marina Bay in Singapore, Marina Bay Sands is owned by Las Vegas Sands Corporation.

The resort features a 1.3 million square feet convention-exhibition center and a 2,561-room hotel.

The three 55-story high-rise towers of the resort are connected to the top of the sky by a boat-shaped park.

Most Expensive Buildings in the World- Marina Bay Sands, Singapore
Marina Bay Sands, Singapore (Source: Twitter)

Similarly, one of the major features of the building worth mentioning is its “infinity pool,” which sits at an altitude of 200 meters.

The construction cost of this building was $5.50 billion.

#4 SoFi Stadium

The unparalleled and unprecedented entertainment and sports destination in Inglewood, California, was built by Los Angeles Rams Chairman/Owner E. Stanley Kroenke.

SoFi Stadium is the first indoor-outdoor stadium to be constructed and is the home of two NFL teams, the Los Angeles Rams and the Chargers.

At the beginning of construction, the total cost of the stadium was estimated at just $2.66 billion, which later increased, nearly doubling the cost making it the most expensive sports venue ever built.

Most Expensive Buildings in the World- SoFi Stadium, Inglewood, California
SoFi Stadium, Inglewood, California (Source: Wikipedia)

Interestingly, the building still holds the title with a total cost of over $5.5 billion.

On February 12, 2022, it hosted the first Super Bowl to be played in the LA area since 1993, Super Bowl XXVII.

#3 Željava Air Base

The complex designed to withstand a direct hit from 20 kilotons nuclear bomb Željava Air Base is situated on the border between Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia.

Shared by the local governments of Lika-Senj County of Croatia and Bihać, it was the largest underground airport in Yugoslavia.

Most Expensive Buildings in the World- Željava Air Base
Željava Air Base (Source: The Telegraph)

Moreover, the construction of the base was led in ultimate secrecy between 1957 and 1965, with the total cost surpassing $6 billion, which was three times more than the entire military budget of Yugoslavia.

#2 Abraj Al Bait

The second most expensive building in the world, Abraj Al-Bait, is located in Saudi Arabia.

It is a government-owned seven skyscraper hotel with the Makkah Clock Royal Tower as the central hotel tower.

The complex sits just meters away from the Great Mosque of Mecca, Islam’s most sacred site.

Most Expensive Buildings in the World- Abraj Al Bait, Saudi Arabia
Abraj Al Bait, Saudi Arabia (Source: Quizmaster Trivia)

One of the most stand-out features of the building has to be its loudspeakers which broadcasts prayer calls to a distance of 7 km.

The building had two fire incidents during its construction.

All in all, the construction cost of the structure was more than $16 billion.

#1 The Great Mosque of Mecca or Masjid al-Haram

The $100 billion Masjid al-Haram, also known as the Great Mosque of Mecca in Saudi Arabia, is the world’s most expensive building.

It is the largest mosque in the world.

The 89 m/292 ft. building covers an area of 88 acres in total.

Most Expensive Buildings in the World- The Great Mosque of Mecca or Masjid al-Haram
The Great Mosque of Mecca or Masjid al-Haram, Saudi Arabia (Source: CNN)

It is considered the holiest place for Muslims to do hajj once in their lives if able.

The building can accommodate over 4 million Muslim worshippers during the Hajj period, which is also one of the largest gatherings of people in the world.

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