Luxury bomb shelter business thrives amid conflict fears

Global Business

The U.S. has had a long history of building bomb shelters, going back to the days of World War Two and the Cold War with the Soviet Union.

But when the danger of nuclear war subsided, so too did the demand for underground shelters. Current events around the world, however, are stoking fear and anxiety, which is boosting the bomb shelter business again.

CGTN’s May Lee reports.

The reality of growing threats in the DPRK, political instability in the U.S. and on-going doomsday theories is stoking fears, and it’s triggering some to prepare for the worst.

Robert Vicino is founder and CEO of Vivos Group, a California-based company that builds and sells memberships to underground bomb shelters that Vicino said can withstand just about anything.

“Our philosophy is not what’s going to happen, and it’s not when it’s going to happen.”, says Vicino. “We have built shelters for whatever is going to happen and whenever. We’re prepared for everything. Vivos has a range of shelters in the U.S. and Europe with more on the way. Depending on the location, the one-time cost ranges from $35,000 per person to $2 million.

Clinical psychiatrist Emanuel Maidenberg said buying into a bomb shelter may seem extreme, but not to those who live with fear and anxiety. “That majority of people will actual follow through with what they want to do,” Maidenberg said. “And the reason is if they can afford it and it’s something that they thought will help them.”

Vivos isn’t alone in trying to meet growing demand for underground shelters. Other companies including Rising S Bunkers out of Texas have also experienced triple digit growth. Vivos’ next big project is in the Republic of Korea where threats from the DPRK are growing by the day. Plans are underway to build a massive multi-level, 23,000 square meter shelter.