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Russian Construction King’s $120M Superyacht Quietly Made Its Way to a Safe Haven

Before the invasion of Ukraine, yachting connoisseurs knew that Russians were some of the top superyacht owners in the world, outnumbered only by Americans. After the international sanctions against the oligarchs were announced, most of the world became familiar with some of the most spectacular floating mansions owned by them. Aurora is one of the few that got away from authorities.
Aurora was close to being seized in Barcelona, but is now safe in a Turkish port 22 photos
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Billionaire Andrey Molchanov is one of the youngest Russian billionaires. The 51-year-old owns the major stake in Russia’s largest producer of construction materials and real estate developers, LSR Group. His floating luxury toy is a majestic 242-footer (74 meters) built by Lurssen just five years ago.

Designed by the world-famous Winch Design studio, this spectacular yacht was initially named Project Gatsby due to its Art Deco style inspired by the 1920s. Boasting enough space for up to 16 guests and what Lurssen calls “custom, state-of-the-art lighting” across each deck, Aurora is also capable of a greater speed than the average for its size category – up to 17 knots (19.5 mph/31.4 kph).

This $120 million superyacht is now safe after having been just one step away from getting seized by authorities. The most recent marine tracking data indicates that Aurora is now close to joining all the other oligarch-owned superyachts that ran to the safe haven of Turkey. Unlike other vessels that had to travel incredible distances after the sanctions, Aurora was luckier and didn’t get to put its impressive range of over 4,000 nautical miles (4,600 miles/7,408 km) to the test.

Back in March, Aurora was undergoing repairs that were allegedly secret at a Barcelona yard. According to media sources, it was moored right next to Valerie, another targeted superyacht. But while Valerie was seized, the investigation of Aurora turned out to be much more complicated due to the infamous issue of determining and proving the exact ownership of Russian yachts. Taking advantage of this, the vessel wrapped up its repairs and quickly sailed away.

While the spectacular Aurora is safe in a Turkish port, its billionaire owner is reportedly one of the many oligarchs looking to move to Dubai, another well-known safe haven.

 
 
 
 
 

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