Known as the James Bond of the yachting world, Roman Abramovich is the owner of the yacht that eclipses nearly every other luxury yacht. Aptly named, the Eclipse is not only one of the largest and most expensive yachts in the world as of July 2014, but also one of the yachts with the most weird and wonderful features. Launched in 2010, the 528 foot long yacht was constructed by master ship builders Blohm & Voss in Germany.
Why James Bond?
Besides the luxury yacht standard of having on-board jacuzzis, pools, helicopter pads and designer furnishings, the Eclipse is also one of the safest yachts navigating the oceans. Roman Abramovich can safely explore the world without fearing Somalian pirates, being shot at or even having missiles fired at his designer yacht. The Eclipse was built with a state of the art radar missile detection system, an intruder detection system, armored protection around the wheelhouse and the main cabin, and the windows are bulletproof. In the extremely unlikely event that the ship does get boarded by intrepid pirates, Abramovich can escape from one of two helicopter pads or through specially crafted secret passageways into his on-board submersible and dive away to safety. The focus on security may be what prompted the Russian billionaire to select the company that built the famous World War II battleship known as the Bismarck for building this yacht.
Since 1877, the name Blom & Voss has been synonymous with quality construction and engineering in ship building. Located in Hamburg, Germany, the company collaborates with internationally recognized designers and architects to create exclusive designs that house complex and technologically advanced naval vessels. These specialist ship builders not only source the top international talent in the industry but also work closely with globally renowned research facilities like Germanischer Lloyd and the Hamburg Ship Model Basin. This makes Blom & Voss pioneers of the industry and has resulted in the company masterminding innovative production techniques that invariably move on to dominate the market.
One of the wealthiest men in the world, billionaire businessman and politician Roman Abramovich owns Chelsea Football Club and an extensive collection of very expensive toys like yachts, planes, helicopters and cars. Abramovich was not always super rich, he worked as a street trader and as a mechanic before his life as an entrepreneur started with one of his first business initiatives, selling imported rubber ducks from a stark apartment in Moscow. His diverse business interests now range from the oil industry to doll manufacturing, pig farms, bodyguard recruitment and tyre retreading. Abramovich is also active in Russian politics and served as the governor of Chukotka for eight years. It is rumored that he spent over US$1 billion of his own money on the region during this time. Although he resigned from this role, Abramovich continued to make substantial donations to the region.