The Anti-Paparazzi Yacht

Owner of the world’s largest and most expensive private yacht, Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich, has broken ground yet again and this time he’s taking a stand against the paparazzi.

Abramovich’s superyacht, the $420 million Eclipse, currently undergoing construction in Hamburg, Germany, can accommodate 24 guests with a 70-member crew and measures in at 557 feet. In the ongoing battle of the boats, it supersedes Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid’s 530-foot Dubai yacht, formally the world’s biggest yacht. However, it’s not only about the size of the yacht—the Eclipse is reported to be equipped with some of the finest features to date, including armor plating surrounding the bridge and Abramovich’s master suite, bullet proof windows, an underwater submarine launcher that doubles as an escape pod, home cinema screens in each of the suites that measure six feet, and two helicopter pads.

However, when you sail around in a record breaking yacht, you’re bound to attract attention, and that is exactly what Abramovich is working against now. In order to avoid the constant invasion by the paparazzi while sailing his superyacht, Abramovich has come up with a unique solution to protecting his privacy. The anti-paparazzi shield incorporates a hi-tech system integrated into the yacht that relies on lasers to block any digital cameras that may be lurking nearby. If the system detects a digital camera in the proximity of the Eclipse, it automatically fires a beam of light at the camera, disabling the camera’s ability to shoot and record. The laser beams can also be activated by Abramovich’s security, should they spot a paparazzi lingering, helping Abramovich maintain a level of privacy rarely experienced by individuals of his status.

The updated super yacht is set to be delivered to Abramovich on December 22, 2009. He is currently taking frequent trips to Hamburg to oversee its construction and request updates like the anti-paparazzi shield. Due to the ongoing modifications, it is reported that the yacht has nearly doubled in price.

Via Luxury Launches