Sanctioned Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich’s $600 million superyacht Solaris has finally found a spot to dock after wandering in the open seas without a set destination for a long time. The 460-footer docked in the Turkish tourist resort of Bodrum on Monday. Turkey has not joined European sanctions against Russia and many of its wealthy businessmen with close contacts with Vladimir Putin, including the Chelsea Football Club owner. The billionaire’s Bermudan-flagged superyacht was at a shipyard in Barcelona for maintenance since late 2021. However, the luxury vessel had to hastily set sail on March 8, shortly before Abramovich was sanctioned, to avoid being seized by the authorities. Several European nations have already seized yachts, private jets, and other assets belonging to several sanctioned Russian billionaires.
After leaving the shipyard in Barcelona, the Solaris made a brief stop at Tivat, Montenegro. However, the superyacht was back in the sea on March 8, sailing aimlessly, skirting the jurisdictions of European Union countries. According to the tracking website MarineTraffic, the vessel was located off the southwestern coast of Turkey before Monday and had changed its to “scenic cruising” from “awaiting orders.” A spokesperson for MarineTraffic told Insider that the superyacht’s status change was most probably a tactic “to confuse people from where its final destination is.”
While Abramovich’s gargantuan luxury superyacht is currently safe in Turkey away from anti-Russia sanctions, supporters of Ukraine made it difficult for Solaris to dock at the Aegean Sea resort. Protestors in a tiny inflatable dinghy got in the way of the massive superyacht to prevent it from docking. It is believed that the group of protestors were of Ukrainian origin and were carrying flags with the words ‘No War’ emblazoned on them. The pictures might evoke the story of David vs Goliath; however, the protestors were unable to stop the massive vessel.
A day after the Solaris docked at Bodrum, Abramovich’s second megayacht named Eclipse has also reportedly reached Turkey and docked in Marmaris. It had set sail from St. Martin in the Caribbean in late February and was on its way to meet the Solaris.
After traveling for 28 days, the $700 million luxury superyacht finally docked at the tourist resort in Turkey. The sanctioned billionaire’s private jet also flew into Istanbul last week, also to avoid being confiscated in all probability. According to news reports, Abramovich has already reached Russia after being spotted in a VIP lounge at an Israeli airport on March 14.
Roman Abramovich is believed to be the 11th richest man in Russia with a net worth of around $13.5 billion. The 56-year-old billionaire is most famous around the world as the owner of the Chelsea soccer club, which he is been trying to sell for $3 billion after Russia invaded Ukraine last month.
A recent study also made a startling claim that the Russian oligarch has the biggest carbon footprint amongst all billionaires across the world. What’s surprising is that the Solaris and Eclipse, two of the world’s biggest superyachts, are the biggest contributors to his carbon footprint. The two luxury vessels have a combined value of $1.5 billion and produce more CO2 than some small island nations. To know more about the two superyachts and other ultra-expensive toys of Roman Abramovich, you can read here.