$185 Million Private Yacht “Vacationing” in San Diego Bay
by Hayley Bisceglia-Martin

Note the LUNA’s expansive aft deck with the double stairs down to the swimming platform, providing an ultra-luxurious beach club atmosphere for guests.

San Diego Bay is playing host to nautical royalty, as one of the largest luxury yachts in the world has been laying anchor here for the last four months. Due to extreme security, it is unknown if the owner is on board.

With a daily docking fee of approximately $752, the yacht’s stay has racked up over $90,000 in harbor fees alone. But that’s pocket change to billionaire owner Roman Abramovich. The Motor Yacht LUNA clocks in at 115m (377 feet) and boasts two helicopter landing pads, an outdoor swimming pool and a staff of 40 to service 11 guest cabins. The interior was designed by the distinguished designer, Donald Starkey.

The exterior was designed by Newcruise Design. The artistic inspiration, according to Katherine, came from the period 1920’s - 1940’s when the Art Deco movement and the Swing era of jazz flourished in New York City.

Roman Abramovich, owner of a fleet of mega yachts including the LUNA , pictured above with his girlfriend.
LUNA is an expedition yacht which means it was built to allow her owner to cruise long distances without refueling and to weather adverse weather conditions. The yacht has an expansive open aft deck that has a covered swimming pool as well as an open luxury sunbathing area which leads down to the swim platform.

This expansive open aft deck is similar to another luxury yacht, the 82m ALFA NERO, which allows the guests to get close to the water which is unusual for a yacht of this size. The Russian steel tycoon Roman Abramovich paid $185 million when it was built in 2010.

At the time, it was the longest yacht in the world, but it has since slipped to No. 20 on the global rankings—tied with the ship PERLORUS which was once owned by Abramovich (his ex-wife received it as part of a divorce settlement). His other yacht, the 164 m (533 feet)-long ECLIPSE is the second largest private yacht in the world as of April 2013. The competition for “Largest Private Yacht” is especially keen as Russian, Chinese, and Arab billionaires have developed a taste for mega yachts.

Roman Abramovich, owner of a fleet of mega yachts including the LUNA , pictured above with his girlfriend.

Of course, dropping a few hundred million dollars on a fleet of luxury yachts is nothing to 46-year-old Abramovich, who is No. 107 on Forbes’ 2013 list of “The World’s Billionaires;” currently his wealth is estimated at $10.2 billion. He peaked at No. 15 in 2008, when his net worth was estimated at $23.5 billion.

It seems that the competition for “The World’s Billionaires” is as fierce and volatile as the competition for largest mega yachts.

According to, the longest yacht in the world now is the 180m (590 feet) AZZAM. German shipbuilding company Lürssen completed it earlier this year for an unknown buyer.

The superyacht LUNA was built by Lloyd Werft and Stahlbau Nord Shipyards as a motor yacht, meant for long sea voyages and exploration. It spends most of its time cruising in the West Mediterranean, or being leased out for charter.

Though 377 feet long, San Diegans may be hard-pressed to actually find the LUNA, since most of it is oscured from public view by surrounding buildings. The top of the radio tower is about all you can see, and can be easily mistaken for the top of a buiding.

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