One seafarer’s loss could be your gain.
The government of Antigua and Barbuda is looking to auction off one of the most recognized superyachts of the early 2000s after it was abandoned in the Caribbean country at the beginning of the Russo-Ukrainian War.
The 267-footer in question, which goes by the name of Alfa Nero, was moored at Antigua Yacht Club Marina back in February 2022. Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the vessel was barred from leaving Falmouth Harbour until authorities confirmed whether the owner had been named on international sanction lists. The government said the search proved unsuccessful and has deemed the unmaintained vessel a hazard to shipping and the harbor. As a result, the yacht will be auctioned off to the highest bidder unless the owner comes forward within a 10-day timeframe.
“A notice to the newspapers and other media will be published for a period of 10 days, notifying the sale of the Alfa Nero vessel in order to satisfy the requirements under the law for a forced sale,” a statement from the Office of the Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda read. “If the owner fails to claim the vessel within that time period, the Government of Antigua and Barbuda will sell it to the highest bidder.”
Delivered in 2007 by Oceanco, Alfa Nero features a striking exterior by Nuvolari Lenard and interior styling by Alberto Pinto that together have landed the yacht a number of awards. The beautiful behemoth notably features six staterooms, accommodation for 28 crew, a hydraulically operated pool and a large helipad aft. Alfa Nero was sold in 2011 to its current owner with an asking price of $115 million, according to Marine Industry News. The Guardian has previously reported that the yacht is linked to the Russian oligarch (and Putin ally) Andrey Guryev.
The Antigua and Barbuda government reportedly consulted with the US authorities prior to taking the action. During a media briefing, Information Minister Melford Nicholas told reporters that any proceeds from the sale of Alfa Nero would remain in the Antiguan government’s hands, but the US could request access to the funds in the future.