A Russian oligarch's 2 superyachts worth a total of more than $1 billion have docked in Turkish ports, avoiding sanctions risks at EU harbors

A Russian oligarch's 2 superyachts worth a total of more than $1 billion have docked in Turkish ports, avoiding sanctions risks at EU harbors
Roman Abramovich's superyacht, Solaris.Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/SAVO PRELEVIC/AFP via Getty Images
  • Roman Abramovich's $600 million yacht Solaris docked in Bodrum, Turkey, on Monday, per ship-tracking data.
  • The oligarch's $700 million superyacht arrived Tuesday in Marmaris, Turkey, Marine Traffic shows.

Two superyachts belonging to sanctioned Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich have docked in Turkey, ship-tracking data showed, following weeks of speculation over the vessels' destination amid a crackdown on oligarchs' assets.

Abramovich's $700 million luxury superyacht, Eclipse, arrived in the tourist resort of Marmaris in southwest Turkey, on Tuesday, after cruising around the Greek island of Crete, according to the tracking website Marine Traffic.

The 533-foot vessel had set sail from St. Martin in the Caribbean in late February and had been traveling for 28 days, Marine Traffic showed.

It arrived a day after Abramovich's $600 million superyacht, Solaris, docked in the port of Bodrum in southwest Turkey on Monday, per Marine Traffic data.

The yacht departed from Tivat in Montenegro on March 13, avoiding other destinations in Europe that may have left it vulnerable to EU sanctions, before arriving in Turkey.


After US, UK and EU governments announced sanctions targeting Russian oligarchs, the location and movements of their luxury assets, such as private jets and yachts, have been closely followed.

Governments have seized some vessels at European ports in recent weeks, as governments implement measures designed to pressure the Russian elite and President Vladimir Putin over Moscow's decision to invade Ukraine.

Bodrum has been popular with Russia's wealthy in the past, but the country's ports may also have been chosen due to Turkey's stance on Moscow's decision to invade Ukraine, which potentially leaves oligarchs' assets at less risk of being impounded.

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan has criticized sanctions levied against Russia, while at the same time supporting Ukraine.

Abramovich was sanctioned by the EU on March 15, meaning his assets have been frozen and he's been barred from doing business there.


The Chelsea Football Club owner's private jet flew into Istanbul last week, according to flight-tracking website FlightRadar24. Abramovich was spotted in a VIP lounge at an Israeli airport on March 14 before the jet landed in Istanbul on the same day, Reuters first reported. It then flew back to Moscow on Wednesday, FlightRadar24 showed.

Solaris had been docked in the Barcelona shipyard of the Spanish yacht-maintenance firm MB92 since late 2021. It left Spain on March 8, two days before Abramovich was sanctioned by the UK, and sailed to Tivat in Montenegro on March 12.

NATO member Turkey, which has good relations with both Russia and Ukraine, doesn't want to fall out with Moscow because of its strategic interests — but it also needs to support Ukraine and its NATO allies over any threat to European security.

"We believe that the sanctions will not resolve the problem," Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said last week at a diplomatic forum in Antalya on Sunday, cited by Russian state-owned news agency TASS.

Reuters reported that Erdogan has described the West as a "hindrance" in response to Russia's invasion of Ukraine.