Abamovich's superyacht is turned away from Turkish port over sanctions

Keep on moving! Roman Abamovich’s £430m superyacht Solaris has to leave Turkish port to stop the marina’s operator breaching UK’s sanctions by allowing the 460ft vessel to moor up as it seeks refuge

  • The 140-metre yacht, which has a helipad and swimming pool, has been turned away from a Turkish port
  • After arriving at Bodrum Cruise Port on Monday morning, the luxury vessel faced a fearful port operator
  • Global Ports Holding, which is listed on the London Stock Exchange, refused to accept berthing fees
  • Although Turkey has not sanctioned the Russian oligarch, his vessel could not transact and had to leave

A superyacht owned by Roman Abramovich has left a Turkish marina, after the port’s operator turned away the £430m vessel over fears that accepting a toll could see the company fall foul of UK sanctions on Russia.

Solaris, a 460ft yacht complete with a helipad and swimming pool, arrived at Bodrum Cruise Port on Monday morning – a marina owned by the Turkish government.

The port is run by Global Ports Holding, a publicly traded company listed on the London Stock Exchange, and the company feared charging Mr Abramovich’s boat berthing fees could violate the UK’s sanctions against Russia, according to the Financial Times. 

Unable to turn the ship away from the Turkish port while fearful of doing business with a sanctioned individual, the operator was left with little option but to give the oligarch-owned superyacht a free pass to berth for the day.

Solaris took refuge in Turkish waters last month, after its owner correctly pre-empted that EU countries might attempt to impound and expropriate the vessel. 

A superyacht reportedly owned by Roman Abramovich has left a Turkish marina, after the port’s operator turned away the £430m vessel over fears that accepting a toll could see the company fall foul of UK sanctions on Russia

Solaris is a 140-metre yacht complete with a helipad and swimming pool


The Chelsea Football Club owner was seen in Tel Aviv airport in early March on his way to Istanbul, as the EU decided to follow the UK and sanction him

The Bermuda-flagged luxury yacht Solaris docked in Turkey – which has not joined sanctions on Russia – after departing from Montenegro.

A group of Ukrainians carrying Ukrainian flags with the words ‘No War’ emblazoned on them boarded a small motor boat and tried to prevent the yacht from docking.

Mr Abramovich and other peace negotiators suffered debilitating symptoms including temporary blindness on a mission in early March to Kyiv seeking an end to the war. 

Investigative journalist Christo Grozev, who led research into the shocking incident, said a team of experts agreed the wartime chemical was the most likely one used in the attack.

It has since emerged the billionaire felt so unwell that he asked the scientist examining him if he was dying, reported the New York Times.  

On March 16, the European Union imposed sanctions on the Chelsea-owner as it updated a list of individuals facing asset freezes and travel bans over their ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s government.

Abramovich is worth up to £12billion and owns a £150m Kensington mansion, a £22m penthouse, and more than £1.2bn of yachts, private jets, helicopters and supercars based in Britain and around the world

Montenegro is not in the EU, although it is expected to join in 2025, and the port of Tivat was being used by several Russian superyacht owners.

The country then signed up to EU sanctions against Russia after the invasion of Ukraine, possibly putting Solaris at risk of being seized if it had stayed in the port.

Nato-member Turkey has close ties to both Russia and Ukraine. It has criticised Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine but has also positioned itself as a neutral party trying to mediate between the two.

Turkey has closed the Turkish Straits connecting the Black Sea to the Mediterranean Sea to most Russian warships but has not imposed sanctions on Russia or shut down its airspace to Russian flights.

According to the Financial Times, Mr Abramovich has a fleet of five yachts – including Solaris – worth a collective £760m, with one even larger boat measuring 163 metres called Eclipse, worth £540m, moored in the Turkish port of Marmaris.

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