Reports about the superyachts of sanctioned Russian billionaires being frozen or detained came a dime a dozen in the aftermath of the invasion of Ukraine by the country at the end of February. But are these floating displays of obscene wealth now closely watched over in European harbors and marinas big or little fish when considering the most valuable superyachts owned by Russian billionaires?
The answer to this question is: they kind of are.
As Statista's Katharina Buchholz details below, among the megalomaniac yachts detained in Europe are some of the biggest known to be owned by now sanctioned Russians. This is according to information by the Russian Asset Tracker and several media reports by Forbes and others.
The Crescent, currently being held in Tarragona on the Spanish Mediterranean coast, is linked to sanctioned Rosneft CEO Igor Sechin. At an approximate value of $600 million and a length of 443 feet, it is one of the largest yachts in the world and is said to feature a large glass-bottom pool, a helicopter hangar and a two-story glass atrium.
Another enormous vessel - nabbed by authorities while undergoing repairs in Hamburg, Germany – is the Dilbar, owned by Metalloinvest’s Alisher Usmanov. It is the world’s largest yacht measured by interior volume and has a staggering length of 511 feet. The yacht is believed to have been even more expensive upon delivery in 2016 than the Crescent, which was finished in 2019. Finally, the world’s largest sailing yacht, three-master SY A, was detained in Trieste, Italy. It is owned by Andrey Melnichenko of EuroChem and coal company SUEK.
But several more of the biggest boats owned by sanctioned Russian oligarchs are currently out of reach of Western authorities.
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These vessels have been sighted in the Maldives, Dubai or Turkey - all countries that haven't imposed sanctions on Russian individuals and have no extradition agreements with the West. The latter nation is currently hosting two boats of yacht afficionado and soon-to-be former Chelsea F.C. owner Roman Abramovich.
Compared to the value of these massive boats, some other superyachts that European countries detained seem rather modest despite their luxurious furnishings. The only ones valued at more than 100 million dollars were Sergei Chemezov’s Valerie, which was frozen by Spanish authorities, and another one of Igor Sechin’s yachts, Amore Vero, which was detained in France. Only the price at the time of delivery was available for the two boats, meaning the current value of the boats built in 2013 and 2011, respectively, would be lower now.
Other highly publicized detainments of superyachts included Alexey Mordaschov’s Lady M and Gennady Timchenko’s Lena, both held up in Italy. The vessels are valued at comparably low $27 million and $8 million, considering loss of value after delivery. The only other yacht of a value of more than $50 million belonging to a sanctioned Russian billionaire was detained in the islands of Mallorca – Victor Vekselberg’s Tango. The latest catch was a $38 million superyacht belonging to an unnamed Russian businessman, which was frozen by British authorities in London’s Canary Wharf in connection with sanctions, The Guardian reported Tuesday.