Mega-yachts ob­scure view of Statue of Lib­erty

The Commercial Appeal - - Viewpoint -

The (Ber­gen County, N.J.) Record

Wealthy enough to own a mega-yacht but too cheap to pay for park­ing? Just drop anchor next to the Statue of Lib­erty and soak up the mil­lion-dol­lar views for free.

That was the tac­tic of Rus­sian-Amer­i­can oil ty­coon Eu­gene Shvi­dler, who an­chored his 370-foot Le Grand Bleu next to Lady Lib­erty for weeks at a time from April to June.

No sooner did he leave Lib­erty Bay than Swiss-Ital­ian scion Ernesto Bertarelli parked his 318-foot Vava II in the same wa­ters, fol­lowed by Ger­man bil­lion­aire Rein­hold Wuerth in his rel­a­tively mod­est 280-foot Vi­brant Cu­rios­ity this month.

The an­tics have ob­structed views of the iconic mon­u­ment and left tourists fum­ing.

A New Jer­sey state se­na­tor wants to clear the bay of parked mega-yachts for good.

“When Emma Lazarus wrote about Amer­ica wel­com­ing ‘your tired, your poor, your hud­dled masses yearn­ing to breathe free,’ it was not an in­vi­ta­tion to bil­lion­aire oil ty­coons to use the wa­ters sur­round­ing the Statue of Lib­erty as a park­ing lot for their yachts,” State Sen. Richard Codey said in a state­ment Fri­day.

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