Chelsea Football Club owner Roman Abramovich may certainly have traveled to witness his team’s recent Champions League win in style. The oligarch philanthropist owns one of the world’s most expensive private jets – a Boeing 767-33AER complete with a gold-gilded banquet hall and the same anti-ballistic system as the VC-25As used as Air Force One.
We have recently covered the private jet collections of Microsoft founder-turned-philanthropist Bill Gates and Dallas Mavericks’ owner Mark Cuban. Now, the turn has come to take a closer look at the plane of choice of another high-profile sports team owner and billionaire.
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Banquet hall for 30 people
The star of Chelsea boss and Russian-Israeli oligarch Roman Arkadyevic Abramovich’s private fleet is a customized Boeing 767-33AER valued at $170 million. Officially registered as P4-MES, it has received the nickname ‘The Bandit’ due to its characteristic slanting black stripes by the window of the cockpit.
It was built in 2003 destined for Hawaiian Airlines. However, Hawaiian ended up canceling the order, and Abramovich bought the jet in 2004. It is operated by private air charter company Global Jet Luxembourg, formerly known as Silver Arrows.
Not only does its 4.7-meter wide cabin feature a banquet hall for 30 people, but it is one of the securest aircraft on the planet. The 767-33A has reportedly been equipped with the same kind of anti-missile system found on the modified 747s used as Air Force One. This protects the plane from both ground-to-air and air-to-air attacks by disturbing the guidance systems of potential incoming ballistic missiles. It also jams radio frequencies of non-friendly forces.
Full kitchen and gold-plating
The aircraft’s interior is conceptualized by British yacht designer Andrew Winch. It features chestnut furniture, a full kitchen, an office, and, of course, a bedroom with a double bed and ensuite bathroom, all with gold trimmings. The plane is powered by Pratt & Whitney PW4000 engines and has a cruising speed of 850 km/h.
First Boeing jet in 2001
The first Boeing jet Abramovich acquired, however, was a Boeing 737-700. The business version of Boeing’s Next Generation jet was deemed the perfect option for traveling back and forth from the inaccessible Chukotka Autonomous Okrug, the easternmost federal administrative object in Russia, of which Abramovich was governor from 2001 to 2008.
Reportedly, it was part of a settlement reached during Abramovich’s divorce from his second wife, former flight attendant Irina. Data from ch-aviation shows that the aircraft is now registered as N950TR and is operated by Silver Air on behalf of self-help guru Tony Robbins.
Abramovich’s flying mansion regularly features on lists of the most expensive private jets in the world, as is most likely befitting of the plane of someone worth $15.2 billion. However, when considering that just about lands him in the top 100 wealthiest individuals on the planet, one can only imagine what features planes such as the private A380 of Prince Alwaleed bin Talal of Saudi Arabia may have.