Scarcely two weeks have gone by since we reported that Roman Abramovich’s gigayacht Eclipse was not quite as big as originally reported at only 533 ft. At the time we speculated that the man in second place, one Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum. who rules a little country called Dubai and owns a yacht called Dubai that’s a mere 18 inches shorter than the Eclipse, would instruct his local shipyard to tack on enough extra hardware to put Abramovich in his place. From James’ mouth to God’s ear, so to speak: the London Sunday Times is now reporting it as a done deed, without so much as a nod in our direction.
According to the Times, the Sheikh plans to have the UAE’s Platinum Yachts, which built his boat the Dubai, tack on anywhere from two to eight extra feet in order to regain the world’s largest privately owned yacht title. Upon closer inspection, however, the Times’ story is less concrete fact than abject speculation; it seems they did little more than embellish our original report with some cagily referenced quotes from “shipping experts” and “port officials”. The best the Times can come up with in the final analysis is that the Dubai “could be” refitted and enlarged some time in the next year. In the meantime, keep watching this space if you want to know where the so-called paper of record gets it’s info.