Roman Abramovich's Colorado homes could be among first assets frozen

Iced out! Roman Abramovich’s $50M Aspen mega-mansion – and a $11.8M guest house – may be his first assets frozen by the White House as officials look to finally levy sanctions against the Russian billionaire

  • Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich’s luxe properties in Colorado are among the assets that could be frozen if he is sanctioned by the U.S. government, experts say
  • The billionaire businessman has been hit by EU and UK sanctions, but has not yet been hit by the U.S. 
  • Abramovich’s 14,000-square-foot mega-home in Snowmass, Colorado – just outside of Aspen – is worth an estimated $50M and is a prime target for sanctions, along with a smaller $11.8M property 
  • US officials haven’t made any indications about the properties 
  • CNBC reports that the properties were purchased and still remain in Abramovich’s name, which makes it easier for the U.S. government to freeze – though officials would not be able to seize ownership
  • Experts tell CNBC that the only way the government can take the property is if they prove Abramovich has committed a U.S. crime
  • On Friday, Abramovich’s $65 Gulfstream jet with the tail sign LX-RAY was targeted by the U.S.
  • Along with 99 Boeing jets, the Commerce Department said it was in breach of export controls and warned contractors against refueling or repairing the plane
  • This means the jet is unable to make international trips, the department said  
  • Abramovich has put the Chelsea Football Club up for sale, and staff are said to have been ready for viewings at his 15-bedroom $195 million in London

Two multimillion dollar mega-properties in Colorado that are owned by Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich are prime targets to be frozen by the U.S. government if the billionaire is finally sanctioned by the White House, according to experts. 

Abramovich has been sanctioned in the UK and Canada in response to the war in Ukraine – but not in the European Union or the U.S. as of Monday morning. 

The White House will make a decision in the coming days about whether or not to include Abramovich in its next round of sanctions, according to CNBC. If sanctioned, it’s likely that Abramovich’s two properties in Colorado would be the first to go.  

The Russian billionaire’s sleek 14,000-square-foot modern mega-home is perched nearly 1,000 feet above and secluded at the end of a remote road on 200 acres near Snowmass, Colorado, just outside of Aspen. He purchased the home in 2008 for $36.5 million – though its value is now an estimated $50 million. 

The home was designed by New York-based Voorsanger Architects. Its steel folded-plate roof has been compared to a giant wing, which was designed for heavy snow load to protect the driveway below, CNBC reported.  

Inside, the home boasts floor-to-ceiling windows with sweeping views of Capitol Peak, Mount Daly, the Roaring Fork Valley and Aspen. A 12-foot moss rock wall divides the east and west wings. 

Abramovich also owns another property just down the narrow mountain road, a 5,500-square-foot chalet-style home in Snowmass Village, which CNBC reports he purchased in 2008 for $11.8 million. 

This smaller property, which is next to the ski slopes, is thought to serve as a guest or caretaker’s house, local brokers said. 

CNBC reports that the properties in Snowmass were purchased and still remain in Abramovich’s name, which makes it easier for the U.S. government to freeze – though authorities would not be able to seize ownership unless they can prove Abramovich has committed a U.S. crime, experts said. 

Abramovich’s sleek 14,000-square-foot modern mega-home is perched nearly 1,000 feet above and secluded at the end of a remote road on 200 acres near Snowmass, Colorado, just outside of Aspen. He purchased the home in 2008 for $36.5 million – though its value is now an estimated $50 million

Abramovich also owns another property just down the narrow mountain road, a 5,500-square-foot chalet-style home in Snowmass Village, which CNBC reports he purchased in 2008 for $11.8 million

CNBC reports that the properties in Snowmass were purchased and still remain in Abramovich’s name, which makes it easier for the U.S. government to freeze – though authorities would not be able to seize ownership unless they can prove Abramovich has committed a U.S. crime, experts said

Abramovich also owns several New York properties, most notably a stretch of townhomes in the city’s Upper East Side, which he began acquiring in 2014 for a total of $90 million.

He owns four buildings on one block of East 75th Street, three of which he plans to consolidate into one massive mansion of 31,500 square feet, according to the New York Post. 

The mega home of three townhomes combined, estimated value at $74 million, would boast five bedrooms, 12 bathrooms, an indoor/outdoor pool, various staircases, and a primary suite that nearly takes up an entire floor. The fourth home at 15 East 75th is valued at $16.5 million. 

Abramovich also owns several New York properties, most notably a stretch of townhomes in the city’s Upper East Side, which he began acquiring in 2014 for a total of $90 million.

He owns four buildings on one block of East 75th Street, three of which he plans to consolidate into one massive mansion of 31,500 square feet, according to the New York Post

Last week, the U.S. moved to prevent one of Abramovich’s private jets from making international flights, along with 99 Boeing aircraft that are believed to violate U.S. export controls.

As part of its sanctions on Russia and the wealthy elite surround President Vladimir Putin, the Biden administration has already banned Russian aircraft from its airspace. 

Now the U.S. Commerce Department will use export control measures to warn companies around the world they face jail time or fines if they provide refueling, maintenance services or spare parts to the planes. 

The list of 100 aircraft includes 99 Boeing airplanes operated by Russian passenger and cargo carriers including Aeroflot, AirBridge Cargo, Utair, Nordwind, Azur Air and Aviastar-TU, as well as Abramovich’s $65 million Gulfstream G650, which is believed to still be in Moscow. 

Abramovich’s luxury lifestyle is being squeezed by EU and UK sanctions – and now the US has moved to prevent his Gulfstream plane from making international flights

Abramovich’s Gulfstream heads the list of 100 sanctioned planes issued by the Department of Commerce on Friday. Officials said it effectively means it cannot leave Russia

It is the latest blow to the 55-year-old billionaire, who made his fortune buying up discounted state assets after the collapse of the Soviet Union.

He has been hit by a string of sanctions in the U.K. and E.U. thanks to his close relationship with Putin, and scrambled to divest before the asset freeze hit.

He put Chelsea Football Club up for sale, and staff are said to have been ready for viewings at his 15-bedroom $195 million (£150m) mansion at Kensington Palace Gardens, London, and a three-story penthouse at Chelsea Waterfront. 

Along with other oligarchs, he has seen his world turned upside down since Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine and the West launched an economic stranglehold on Moscow. 

U.S. lawmakers had also stepped up calls for Washington to add its weight to the pressure on Abramovich.

‘We request that Abramovich be sanctioned as a matter of urgency,’ wrote members of Congress.

‘His blood money helps fuel Putin’s unprovoked and illegal war against Ukraine.’

It came after investigators at State Street bank in Boston claimed that more than a billion dollars of his in cash had been funneled through offshore companies into the US from 2001 to 2016, BuzzFeed News reported.

On Friday U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimando said: ‘Today, the Department of Commerce is demonstrating the power and reach of the actions we took over the past few weeks in response to Russia’s brutal war of choice against Ukraine.’ 

‘We are publishing this list to put the world on notice – we will not allow Russian and Belarusian companies and oligarchs to travel with impunity in violation of our laws.’

The department published specific tail numbers of the planes, including 33 Boeing planes operated by Aeroflot , and 12 Boeing 747 cargo planes operated by AirBridge Cargo, a unit of Volga-Dnepr Group.

Aeroflot, AirBridge and a spokesperson for Abramovich, who owns the English soccer club Chelsea, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

As sanctions increase and safe havens reduce, Roman’s planes and boats are heading for places where they cannot be seized

The United States, Canada and much of Europe have barred Russian planes from flying over their airspace, which has forced the cancellation of much of Russia’s international flights.

The rules apply to any U.S. manufactured aircraft or any with more than 25% U.S.-origin controlled content that were re-exported to Russia after the new stringent controls on aviation-related items for Russia took effect on Feb. 24.

Abramovich was among several Russian billionaires added last week to an EU blacklist that already included dozens of wealthy Russians, and EU governments have acted to seize yachts and other luxury assets from them.

World governments are seeking to isolate President Vladimir Putin and his allies over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which the Kremlin calls a ‘special operation’.

Last week, Abramovich flew into Moscow after leaving Istanbul in his private jet. According to flight tracking data it was a second trip by a jet linked to Abramovich between the Turkish city and the Russian capital in three days.

Sanctioned Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich was spotted in a VIP lounge last week before he left Tel Aviv for Istanbul

Abramovich made his fortune buying up discounted state assets after the collapse of the Soviet Union and was one of the oligarchs that make up Russia’s wealthy elite. The West has imposed sanctions on them in an attempt to put pressure on Vladimir Putin

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