When King Charles III and his wife, the Queen Consort Camilla, are crowned on May 6, the coronation ceremony will glitter with the Crown Jewels and other historic symbols of the monarchy’s vast wealth.
King Charles’ net worth has soared to about $2.3 billion, according to The Guardian, which said it worked with 12 experts to undertake the first “comprehensive audit” of the king’s assets, which range from country estates to race cars and jewels.
Yet among his most valuable assets is something intangible: an exemption for Charles from the U.K.’s inheritance tax, which otherwise would have taken a 40% bite out of his inherited assets. Queen Elizabeth II was worth $500 million when she passed away last year, largely from her ownership of Balmoral Castle in Scotland and Sandringham House in England, as well as art, jewels, investments and real estate, Forbes estimated last year.
Not everyone pegs Charles’ wealth at the same sky-high valuation as The Guardian. The U.K.’s Sunday Times estimated his net worth at about $750 million. Part of the challenge in assessing the king’s wealth is that many of his financial holdings aren’t publicly disclosed, while other assets that may appear to be owned by the monarchy are in fact property of the U.K., the Guardian noted.
Live coverage of the coronation will begin at 5 a.m. Eastern time on May 6, available on CBS television stations or streaming live on CBS News and on your mobile or streaming device
Here’s what we know about King Charles’ wealth.
The Duchy of Lancaster: $820 million
The duchy consists of a private estate owned by the monarch that spans about 45,000 acres across England and Wales, ranging from castles such as Lancaster Castle to commercial properties in London’s Savoy precinct.
The estate provided Queen Elizabeth with profits of almost $140 million in the five years before her death, the Guardian noted. The assets of the sprawling group of properties is worth about $820 million, it estimated.
Private jewels: $670 million
A 94.4-carat pear-cut diamond will be featured in the crown worn by Camilla, the Queen Consort, in the coronation — representing just one of the jewels privately owned by Queen Elizabeth that are now among Charles’ possessions, according to The Guardian.
Together, the 54 privately owned jewels are worth about $670 million, the Guardian estimated. The diamond that will be in Camilla’s crown is one of two gems called the “the Lesser Stars of Africa,” which are both usually in a brooch that The Guardian estimates could be worth more than $226 million.
The Crown Jewels — many of which will be displayed during the coronation — are owned by the state and aren’t part of Charles’ wealth.
Balmoral and Sandringham: $415 million
Charles inherited Balmoral, the Scottish estate where Queen Elizabeth passed away last year, and Sandringham, an estate in Norfolk, from his mother.
Balmoral, with 53,000 acres of land, is valued at $100 million, while Sandringham, which includes farmland and rental properties, is worth $315 million.
Other royal haunts of the monarchy, such as Buckingham Palace and Kensington Palace, aren’t actually properties of the king, but are owned by the state.
Race horses, a stamp collection and art: $190 million
Queen Elizabeth owned about 70 thoroughbreds, which The Guardian valued at $34 million.
The monarch also owns a stamp collection, called the Royal Philatelic Collection, which is considered one of the finest in the world, the newspaper noted. It includes rare stamps from Laos, Canada and other nations, valued at $125 million.
Art by artists including Monet, Chagall and Dalí are worth another $30 million, the publication said.
Investments: $180 million
King Charles also likely has significant wealth in stocks and other investments, according to The Guardian. It estimates those holdings at $180 million, based on 1993 research into the royal family’s shares of FTSE 100 companies. If the monarch had continued to hold those investments, they would be worth $150 million today, the paper said.
Assuming that the crown’s private income has been socked away in the stock market throughout the years, it’s likely that the king has at least $180 million in stock and other investments, it noted.
Rolls-Royces, Bentleys and other cars: $8 million
The Guardian said it identified 23 cars at the Royal Mews at Buckingham Palace and Sandringham, although not all of them belong privately to Charles.
Among the privately own cars are a 1950 Rolls-Royce Phantom IV, one of only 18 made by the manufacturer, and which was bought by Queen Elizabeth and her husband Prince Philip before she was coronated. The car is worth about $3 million, the Guardian estimated. It also estimated the value of the king’s privately owned cars at $8 million.