Most of us think of a panic room or safe room as the dark, small space in the basement, perhaps with video surveillance cameras and a small stash of food. At least this is the type of panic room we saw in the 2002 Jodie Foster movie of the same name.
However, two decades later, those living the life of the rich and famous are adding these panic rooms to their home’s interior for reasons that span from safety to protection against natural disaster and more. The difference is, to the natural eye, the room looks like almost any other. It’s the library, the den or office, the wine cellar or hidden behind a fake bookshelf or under stairs.
Many owners don’t divulge the information to just anyone, but architects and those in the luxury home sales market are sharing how desirable a secret panic room is among their clientele, particularly those rooms that serve as functional in the day-to-day routine.
To install such a room that isn’t previously in place can cost these millionaire’s upwards of $500,000, giving them a sense of personal protection from just about anything.
Check out some of the more luxurious panic rooms reported by these experts in the field.
9 Hidden From Outsiders
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If you opt for a room not typically used for dual purpose, experts have seen staircases that lift up to expose a basement level room below, bookshelves that open with a secret lever and stone decorative walls that open up to a high security space.
8 A Cozy Den
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The small, intimate room with comfortable seating, luxurious wall covering and carpeting gives the allure of curling up with a good book or enjoying drinks and cigars with your guests after dinner. No one would be the wiser, that the door is bulletproof and that fancy wall covering is a disguise for Kevlar lining and a top-notch air-filtration system.
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7 Wine Cellars
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The temperature and air quality is important for your wine just as it would be if you were stowed away in the room for a short time. Wine cellars designed by Architectural Plastics are built with an interior more than 10 times stronger than glass. Based off of classic bank vault design, the walls and doors are made with steel and some rooms can hold up to 3,000 bottles of wine.
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According to MSN, Covert Interiors built a high-end office, also serving as a panic room. The classic design with wood paneling includes bulletproof walls, ultra-resistant doors and windows and in non-emergency situations, allows for a private office for your business needs.
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Fortified Ballistic Security says the average panic room is soon to be a dated amenity, rather, your functional bedroom or bathroom can serve the dual purpose. These days, any room of the home can be outfitted with impenetrable armored doors and windows (currently made in Italy), ballistic proof walls that will withstand bullets as well as hurricanes. Full-length bathroom mirrors and closets can also provide the perfect disguise for an adjoining secret room. To the naked eye, the space looks like a common use wardrobe or mirror.
4 Underground Tunnels
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In one New Jersey home, lies a 130-foot bomb-proof, concrete tunnel. Slip through the secret door within the house, and escape to the other side of the property to safety. In fact, there are more homes with secret tunnels than you might imagine.
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While the exact location of the panic room in interior designer L.M. Pangano’s former home is unknown, what we do know is that safe rooms can be made with solar power, complete with water purification system and backup generator according to Luxexpose. Pangano’s panic room is protected against all natural disaster and imminent danger and was featured in Bruce Willis’ 2005 film, “Hostage”.
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It may not be the most luxurious location, but according to Architecture and Design, it’s the oldest version of the panic room to date. The fireplace looks usable but isn’t. Behind a secret lever, one can dip into a hollow chamber behind the brick. The original plan was a design used for priests to hide when holding illegal, religious gatherings.
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For those celebrities that don’t care to hide, some panic rooms are similar to a bank vault in plain sight. With four-inch-thick steel doors, and a 10-gauge carbon steel inner plate with electronic lock guards, it’s nearly impossible to break through, even with lock-picking devices. A fire-resistant seal has the ability to inflate more than seven times it’s normal size to prevent flames and smoke from entering the room and what’s more, behind that door, many have a luxury game room with billiard table or a man cave with big screen TV, luxurious seating and more.
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Sources: MSN, Luxexpose, Architecture and Design
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