Jeff Bezos’ superyacht was moved from a Dutch shipbuilding yard before dawn Tuesday, likely to avoid drawing locals’ frustrations, and a possible egging.
After public outcry from locals, it did not in fact require dismantling of a historic bridge.
Watch Bezos’ yacht makes its journey.
Jeff Bezos’ megayacht has quietly left the Dutch shipyard where it was built, sans bridge dismantling and crowds of spectators.
The 417-foot vessel, known as Y721 and estimated to cost $500 million, has been under construction by shipbuilding company OceanCo in a shipyard in Alblasserdam, Netherlands. It was towed to the Greenport shipyard in Rotterdam in the wee hours of the morning Tuesday, according to German newsmagazine Der Spiegel.
The controversy surrounding Bezos’ yacht began in February, when Oceanco requested the city of Rotterdam dismantle the Koningshaven Bridge to allow the vessel to pass through the city. Known colloquially as De Hef, the beloved bridge is considered something of a landmark by locals and is nearly 100 years old. Upon completion, the yacht would have three masts that would be too tall for the bridge’s clearance, which is nearly 131 feet.
Dutch residents were outraged and planned an event to throw eggs at Bezos’ yacht if it would require the bridge be dismantled for its passage. Within days, Rotterdam Mayor Ahmed Aboutaleb clarified that no decision had yet been made to dismantle the bridge and said Bezos or Oceanco might need to foot the bill if it ultimately happened.
Earlier this month, Oceanco withdrew its request for the dismantling after the public outcry.
Hanco Bol, a local yachting enthusiast from yacht fan club Dutch Yachting, saw and recorded Tuesday’s relocation in a YouTube video, per Der Spiegel. He said preparations for the move started around 1 am, and the yacht departed at 3 am.
Bol speculates Oceanco “tried to keep the launch and transport under wraps” because the vessel took a route that was longer than necessary but avoided going through the city center and past the Koningshaven Bridge.
“We never saw a transport going that fast,” he wrote in the caption of his YouTube video, adding that Bezos’ yacht arrived at the Greenport shipyard three hours and 24 miles later.
On its voyage Tuesday morning, Bezos’ yacht was towed without its masts, which will be installed later, Der Spiegel reports.
Watch the video of Bezos’ yacht quietly moving shipyards here:
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