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Irish Examiner Thursday 15.08.2013

Sheikh relegates Abramovich in yacht league


Estimated cost: €305m to €456m Width: 20.8m Power: 70mw (94,000hp) Top speed: 31 knots Features: Six bridges and a 6,000sq ft salon

Privacy owned by Tiger Woods (47m)

The owner

Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed, President of the United Arab Emirates

by Audrey Ellard Walsh Roman Abramovich has been relegated to second position — in the super-yacht leagues at least. The Chelsea owner’s three-year reign as owner of the world’s largest yacht has been ended by Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed, President of the United Arab Emirates and ruler of Abu Dhabi. Coming in at 180m long, the Sheikh’s Azzam is the newest plaything in his collection and is 16m longer than Abramovich’s 164m-long Eclipse. The news was revealed in a survey of the world’s biggest yachts by the magazine Yachts France. The Azzam is estimated to have cost between €300m and €450,000 to build. With a combination of two gas turbines and two diesel engines producing 94,000hp, it has a top speed of 31 knots — making it the third-fastest vessel on the list, too. Designed by Nauta Yachts and built by Lurssen Yachts in Bremen, Germany, the project took

LÉ Eithne

■ Owner ‘left without livelihood’

Mariu owned by Georgio Armani (50m)


by Aodhán Ó Faoláin and Ray Managh

Eclipse 163m Azzam

Eclipse owned by Roman Abramovich (right)

three years to complete — a short time in shipbuilding terms. Lurssen has called it the “most complex and challenging yacht which has ever been built”. It features a 6,000sq ft salon designed in a turn-of-the-century style by French designer Christophe Leoni. Though smaller, Abramovich’s Eclipse is believed to accommodate 36 guests in 18 cabins and

boasts two helipads, two swimming pools, a disco, and a three-man leisure-submarine. The sheikh is half-brother to Mansour bin Zayed, owner of the company that acquired Manchester City FC in 2008, knocking the Chelsea owner off the top spot in football spending as well. The competition for ownership of the biggest yacht goes back decades.


Prior to Azzam and Eclipse, the title was held by Prince Abdulaziz, a 147m yacht owned by the Saudi royal family. Before that, it was the 138m-long Rising Sun, owned by the US businessman Larry Ellison. The arrival of Azzam marks a new phase in the race to build ever-bigger and more luxurious mega-yachts. Of the 100 top yachts profiled by the

French magazine, 31 were owned by people from the Middle East, 19 by Russians, and 17 by Americans. In 36th place and 91m-long is the highest-ranked yacht owned by a Briton. Called the Nahlin, it belongs to inventor and entrepreneur James Dyson. Another notable entry in 88th place is Venus. Ordered by Apple co-founder Steve Jobs

before his death in 2011, Venus was built in the Netherlands and designed by Philippe Starck. It features a control panel made up of iMac computers. The largest vessel in the Irish naval fleet is currently the LÉ Eithne at 80m in length. However, it will be surpassed in January by a 90m-long vessel, which is currently under construction in Britain.

RTÉ hopes for on-screen chemistry as Pippa joins Brian on lottery show by Lynne Kelleher Model Pippa O’Connor has revealed she is delighted to be joining husband Brian Ormond on RTÉ as Ireland’s first TV couple. The pair co-host the National Lottery’s Big Money Game on Saturday night on RTÉ One. She said yesterday on Tubridy that she is delighted they are scoring a television first in Ireland with their small screen debut. “It’s something I have wanted for ages. I’m really excited about it. It’s something I’ve been thinking about. I’m going to run with this and hopefully do a good job.” They are only appearing together for one night on

the show as Brian’s usual co-host Sinéad Kennedy has to attend a wedding. However, it is thought RTÉ are testing out the couple’s on-screen chemistry with their appearance on the primetime slot. The couple have been on screen together before when they took part in Celebrity Bainisteoir and starred in their own reality TV show Brian and Pippa Get Married which followed their wedding preparations in 2011. Pippa said: “I know Kathleen [Watkins], Gay Byrne’s wife, introduced the contestants on The Rose of Tralee. That is the closest maybe... I’m thankful that Sinéad is busy in that I get

to stand in for one night.” Meanwhile, she said the couple have been practicing their double act at home. “I’m worried about messing up my lines and reading autocue. But I’m comfortable enough with it. “We’ve done it a couple of times at home reading the script in my pyjamas on the couch. Then Brian says ‘Don’t say it like this. Say it like that’. And then we have a fight,” she joked. Pippa also opened up about the emotional rollercoaster of becoming a first-time mother after the arrival of her son Ollie four months ago. “From my own experience some days I feel great and then other days you just feel absolutely knackered.

It’s exhausting sometimes — most of the time.” She said the first three months were more tiring as she breast-fed. “Thankfully most of the time it’s fine for me but at the start when he was really small and very demanding and I was still feeding him myself, that was hard. “He was feeding on demand. It was sometimes every hour or hour-and-a-half and some days I just felt like crying. He’s just a big baby. He took loads to be full. It’s all part of it and all fun and you just have to not stress out and try and go with the flow and get as much help as possible. Meanwhile she said she has no secret to her

Tupperware tycoon closes the lid on €3.5m land deal in Co Cork by Rose Martin The sale of 370 acres at Hangman’s Point, Kinsale, Co Cork, to Tupperware tycoon Richard Goings has finally closed the lid on a protracted development sage on the sensitive coastal site. Goings has acquired half of what was to be the Kinsale Harbour Resort site for nearly €3.5m, or just under €10,000 per acre, regarded as a good price for a buyer, even in agricultural land values. And while the chief executive of the Tupperware brand slated US consumers earlier this year for what he termed a “discount mentality”, Goings wasn’t averse to picking up a bargain himself — the Ballymacus/Prehane tillage land he bought was originally acquired for multiples of the amount he paid.

The land at Hangman’s Point, Kinsale, which was the subject of a €600m tourism scheme in 2005.

Farming inside today with the Irish Examiner. Granted permission in 2005, the €600m tourism scheme on 650 acres of headland within 8km of Kinsale town received backing from a number of government ministers and was launched under a blaze of publicity. It proposed a five-star, 200-bed hotel set on an Ernie Els-designed golf course, with PGA approval

and associated international equestrian sporting facilities. Backed by XS Projects and spearheaded by local investors Sean Rainey and John Casey, the ambitious scheme ended up becoming a morality tale of the Celtic Tiger years and was stymied by one man, retired sailor Thomas Harding, who went to the High Court to injunct the scheme. Although subsequently overturned by the Supreme Court on a point of law, the scheme became the subject of an oral hearing by An Bord Pleanála in

winter 2008 and rejected in early 2009 by the planning board. The following August, just before the investment company behind the scheme, Kinsale Resort Developments Ltd, went into liquidation, the assets were seized by ACC bank, which placed the properties, mostly land, in the hands of receiver Barry Donoghue of KPMG. The advent of Goings as a buyer has ended the saga and, according to local reports, the tillage land will be leased out for the foreseeable future.

HSE: No delay in ambulance reaching injured man by Donal Hickey The HSE has said there was no delay in an ambulance getting to a critically injured man who had fallen from a tree in Kenmare, Co Kerry, early last Sunday. National Ambulance Service records show the nearest available ambulance was at the scene 22 minutes after a 999 call was made. The local ambulance was on another emergency call at the time. Ambulance control received the call at 3.44am. The first ambulance at the

scene arrived at 4.07am, followed by a second ambulance at 4.26am, according to the HSE. Two men required the ambulances after they had fallen from a tree they had been climbing in Kenmare town square. Jonas Scheibein, 24, of Drimnamore, Sneem, Co Kerry, suffered head and spinal injuries and is on life support at Cork University Hospital. His friend, also in his 20s, sustained fractured ribs and a broken collar bone in the fall.

Meanwhile, senior ambulance officials are to hold a meeting early next month with politicians and representatives of Kerry communities arising from plans to reorganise the service. Amid concerns about the future of the service, more than 8,000 people have signed a petition calling for a full retention of the current ambulance service in the Kenmare area. The petitioners want to retain a Kenmare-based service with a patient-carrying capacity, serving large sections of the Iveragh and

Beara peninsulas. Concerns are also being voiced in Killarney that the town could lose its second ambulance. HSE senior management will attend a meeting in Killarney, on Sept 3, along with a representative of the National Ambulance Service. Members of the Kenmare lobby group Save Our Ambulance Service will also attend. Local TD Michael Healy-Rae said they would be highlighting the importance of a full ambulance service for the Kerry area.

Receiver entitled to control of corner shop

Pippa O’Connor and Brian Ormond will present ‘The Big Money Game’ on RTÉ One on Saturday night. shedding her baby weight. “I haven’t done one single thing since having him. That is the truth. I have no secret. I was relatively

healthy throughout. I ate well. I have a sweet tooth and I gave it back up the last two months of the pregnancy.”

A bank-appointed receiver is entitled to orders for possession of a corner shop in Waterford City, a High Court judge has ruled. Anthony Elliott and his wife Anne, who own and operate the mini market at Griffith Place, Waterford, had pleaded with the court not to grant the receiver, John Coulston of RSM Farrell Grant Sparks, possession of either the shop or an apartment in the city they owned. Mr Elliott said he and his wife would be “left without a livelihood and have no means of income” if they had to hand over the shop, and claimed the receivers had acted in an underhand and intimidatory manner towards them. However, Mr Justice Nicholas Kearns said while he had “every sympathy” with the Elliotts, he had no choice other than to grant the receiver possession of the properties. The judge said he was placing a three-month stay on the order to allow the Elliotts sort out their affairs in respect of their business. The judge said this was yet another “tragic” case where “decent” people like the Elliotts had found themselves in financial difficulties caused by the recession. Mr Coulston and ACC bank sought various orders, including injunctions granting them possession of the properties, and orders prohibiting the Elliotts from interfering or obstructing the receivers from carrying out their duties. ACC appointed a receiver over the properties in Jun 2012 after the Elliotts failed to pay a demand to repay loans advanced to them in 2004. The couple borrowed money to acquire the properties, but fell behind on repayments and now owe

ACC about €600,000. It was claimed the receiver was prevented from gaining possession of the shop and his agents were threatened and intimidated by people while making attempts to secure the shop. Anthony Elliott, aged 60, who represented himself, accepted that the money was owed. The former truck driver said he was suing his former legal and financial advisers and ACC for alleged negligence over being sold a financial product which he said was designed to cover the repayments due to the bank. ACC, he said, accepted this policy as security for the loans. However, he said he later discovered that the product would not cover the repayments, and that he had been “sold a pup”. ACC should have known the product was never going to cover what was owed. He asked the High Court not to grant the injunction until the action arising out of the alleged mis-selling of the financial product had been resolved. He rejected allegations that the agents of the receiver had been in any way threatened or intimidated, and said they had been trying to blacken both his and his family’s name. He said the receivers made a number of attempts to retake possession of the shop. On Sept 27 last, six big men had forced entry into the shop at 4.15am, he claimed. Gardaí were called and told the receiver’s agents were “breaching the peace” and asked them to leave, he said. Two agents of the receivers remained outside the shop and did not leave until 6pm that day. They were given free apple tarts, tea, coffee, and sandwiches, and allowed use the toilet facilities, Mr Elliott added. He said his wife’s heath had also suffered due to the receivership.

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