$500 Million Megayacht Nord Reemerges at Anchor After Successfully Escaping Sanctions

Now that the initial wave of enthusiastic sanctions seems to have worn off and sanctioned oligarchs already know who their allies are, some of the vessels that went “missing” earlier this year are popping back again on the radar. Nord is one of them.
Nord, a $500 million custom superyacht explorer by Lurssen, was delivered in 2021 9 photos
Photo: Lurssen
As it happens, Nord is also one of the most spectacular and expensive projects to come out of the Lurssen shipyard in recent years. With a value estimated at $500 million, it’s often described as a warship disguised in a tuxedo, and it often draws James Bond comparisons – in the sense that a 007 villain would find it just perfect.

In real life, Nord, a very competent and luxurious megayacht slash superyacht explorer, is believed to belong to Russian billionaire Alexey Mordashov. He’s not a James Bond villain, but according to the U.S., the UK and the EU, he comes close to being a real-life one, because he’s funding President Putin’s war on Ukraine, for which reason he was included on sanctions lists right after the February invasion.

As this was happening, Nord turned off its AIS tracking (automatic identification system) and sailed to Vladivostok in Russia, only occasionally going out into the Sea of Japan before returning back to port. Bloomberg reports that, as of this week, Nord is in Hong Kong, and it’s no longer making an effort to keep a low profile, even assuming that such a gigantic vessel could. Nord is now flying a Russian flag instead of the Cayman Islands one it originally had. There is no indication as to where it might be heading next, since AIS is still turned off.

Delivered in 2021, Nord has a total length of 464 feet (141.5 meters), a very memorable silhouette, and six decks to hold all manners of luxury amenities and toys, including a matching helicopter, a private cinema, and 20 luxury suites that can sleep up to 36 guests. It was made for world cruising, and boasts a top speed of 22 knots (25 mph / 40.7 kph), and so far, it has used both these to avoid falling into the wrong hands because of international sanctions.

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About the author: Elena Gorgan
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Elena has been writing for a living since 2006 and, as a journalist, she has put her double major in English and Spanish to good use. She covers automotive and mobility topics like cars and bicycles, and she always knows the shows worth watching on Netflix and friends.
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