A Guide To All The Outrageous Mansions And Estates Owned By Sanctioned Russian Billionaires


Russian oligarchs looking to hide their “ill-begotten gains” from sanctions may be able to evade the authorities in a superyacht or private jet, but good luck moving that $190 million villa on the French Riviera.

On Thursday, the U.S. and the United Kingdom ratcheted up the pressure on Russian billionaires reportedly close to Vladimir Putin when they simultaneously announced an asset freeze and travel ban on prolific investor Alisher Usmanov. The 68-year-old metals magnate had already been sanctioned three days earlier by the European Union, making him one of 16 Russian billionaires sanctioned by the EU, U.S., U.K. Switzerland or Canada since the Russian annexation of Crimea in 2014; five were hit for the first time in the past month since Russian troops invaded Ukraine.

Two of Usmanov’s most prized assets—the 16th-century Sutton Place estate in Surrey and the Beechwood House mansion in London—are located in England. According to a press release by the British government announcing the sanctions, both properties have now been frozen, and no “British citizen or business” can deal with Usmanov. In practice, this means Usmanov can’t sell, rent, or receive any economic benefits from the homes. A representative for Usmanov did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

He’s not the only sanctioned Russian billionaire with significant real estate holdings outside of Russia. Nor is he the only one with homes in Western capitals. Forbes uncovered at least 36 properties owned by 10 sanctioned Russian oligarchs, stretching from Connecticut to Sardinia. By Forbes’ count, these Russian-owned properties are collectively worth more than $1.1 billion.

While asset freezes and travel bans may block these oligarchs from visiting their far-flung homes, it doesn’t mean they immediately lose control of them. That’s in part because it’s not always easy to pin the ownership on them. Putin ally Oleg Deripaska was first sanctioned by the U.S. in 2018, and two of his properties—one in Washington, D.C. and another in New York City—were raided by the FBI in October 2021. But their ownership still hasn’t changed: Forbes reviewed property records in both cities that show both of those properties, plus a third in Manhattan that’s been linked to Deripaska, are still owned by three Delaware-based LLCs that bought them prior to the sanctions. A spokesperson for Deripaska told the Washington Post on Tuesday that the homes are owned by his relatives.

A common way to get around sanctions, according to Alexi Fehlman, an analyst at data intelligence firm Sayari Labs who specializes in Eurasia and Russia, is to transfer properties to a relative or a close associate. “Even though there’s a push to seize assets, that’s going to be complicated,” Fehlman says. “Legally, a lot of the time they’re not necessarily the owners of the property. Often it’ll be an [offshore] entity.”

Still, the U.S. and its allies in Europe have recently indicated they will step up enforcement of sanctions and seize any assets held by sanctioned individuals. On Wednesday, U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland announced a new task force named “KleptoCapture” that will target Russian oligarchs and use asset forfeiture to seize the holdings of sanctioned individuals. That includes using “cutting-edge investigative techniques” such as data analytics, cryptocurrency tracing, foreign intelligence sources and information from financial regulators to identify any sanctions evasion.

Here are the mansions, villas and luxury apartments held by sanctioned Russian billionaires in the United States, Europe and the United Kingdom:

Aven owns Ingliston House, a large estate with 18 rooms, a gym and a saltwater pool, on 8.5 acres adjacent to a golf course in the gated Wentworth Estate in Surrey, England. The wealthy banker reportedly installed “intelligent” electronic fencing, a two-story octagonal guardhouse and a bombproof shelter to make it “KGB-proof.” Aven owns the property through a Cyprus-based company named Servilia Properties Limited, per British property records. He also owns a villa in Sardinia, Italy. A representative for Aven did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Deripaska’s properties in the U.S. include a five-story home on New York’s Upper East Side at 11 East 64th St, purchased through Delaware-based Vesta International LLC for $42.5 million in 2008; a three-story townhouse in Manhattan’s West Village at 12 Gay St, purchased through Delaware-based Lucina International LLC for $4.5 million in 2006; and a nearly 12,000-square-foot mansion with 7 bedrooms and 11 bathrooms near Embassy Row in Washington, D.C. at 2501 30th Street NW, purchased through Delaware-based Hestia International LLC for $15 million in 2006. All three properties are still owned by the same entities, despite the fact that the metals mogul had his assets frozen by the U.S. Treasury Department in 2018.

He also owns Hamstone House in the exclusive St. George’s Hill private gated community in Surrey, an estate with 5 bedrooms and 8 acres of grounds, replete with an 8-foot Venetian glass chandelier as well as a gym, spa, sauna, tennis court and a heated swimming pool. Deripaska owns the mansion through Cyprus-based Edenfield Investments Limited, according to British property records, and the property was recently on the market for $17.5 million.

Elsewhere in England, Deripaska owns a residence with 7 bedrooms, a home cinema, a gym and a Turkish steam bath on 5 Belgrave Square in the chic London neighborhood of Belgravia, bought through British Virgin Islands-based Ravellot Limited, per British property records. He also owns an adjacent property—a “mews house” in what was once a service road for the estate in the 19th century, originally intended for stable horses and servants—with an additional four bedrooms and two garages. A representative for Deripaska did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

His Athlone House is a Victorian-era gothic estate in the wealthy north London neighborhood of Highgate. Built on five acres of landscaped gardens designed to mimic the Palace of Versailles, it’s located next door to Usmanov’s Beechwood House. The mansion had been in disrepair until Fridman purchased it in 2016 for roughly $90 million and restored it, adding an underground swimming pool, a yoga room and an observatory. Fridman owns it directly, according to British property records. A representative for Fridman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Gutseriev owns a home in the affluent Mayfair section in London. A representative for Gutseriev did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

His four villas in Cap d’Antibes on the French Riviera were embroiled in a tax scandal involving a Swiss company named Swiru Holding AG in 2020. French authorities fined Swiru $1.6 million for alleged tax evasion in the sale of one of the villas, named Hier, to Kerimov in 2008, for a declared amount of $51 million instead of the actual purchase price of nearly $190 million. Located on so-called “Millionaires’ Bay,” the nearly 13,000-square-foot Hier also served as the backdrop for the 1988 film Dirty Rotten Scoundrels starring Michael Caine.

In May 2020, Kerimov’s legal counsel Nikita Sychev issued a statement after the fine was issued, indicating that Kerimov “is not under any investigation in this case and that he has never been convicted by any court whatsoever, in France or abroad.” The statement also cites that French courts dismissed prior allegations of money-laundering made against Kerimov, which “caused serious prejudice to [Kerimov] since they constituted the sole basis for the sanctions imposed on him by the [U.S.]” A representative for Kerimov did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Putin’s onetime judo partner, Rotenberg owns several properties in Italy, including two villas in the luxe Costa Smeralda in Sardinia; a villa and an apartment in southern Sardinia; a villa in the hilltop town of Tarquinia, north of Rome; and the 4-star Berg Luxury Hotel in central Rome near the Spanish Steps. The properties, which he owned through Cyprus-based Olpon Investments Limited, were valued at $40 million in 2014. In September that year, Italian authorities froze those assets after the EU imposed sanctions on him as a result of Russia’s annexation of Crimea. Rotenberg sued the EU over the sanctions and obtained a partial annulment in November 2016, when the General Court of the European Union upheld them but revoked the “restrictive measures” applied from July 30, 2014 to March 14, 2015—a period of time that covers the Italian government’s freezing of his assets.

According to Italian property records, Arkady still owns 50% of Aurora 31—the company that owns the Berg Luxury Hotel—through Olpon Investments Limited. The other 50% is owned by another Cyprus-based firm, Logotax Developments Limited, where his brother Boris is a director. A representative for Rotenberg did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Arkady’s brother, Boris, owns two large villas in the town of Èze on the French Riviera, as well as a 72-acre estate with a horse breeding business, which he owns with his wife, Karina, in nearby Mouans-Sartoux. According to a 2018 investigation by the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project, in collaboration with French daily Le Monde and Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta, Rotenberg’s ownership of the Mouans-Sartoux estate was routed through a complex ownership structure including a Monaco-based company named Tannor 2. The villas in Èze, totaling 14,000 square feet including a swimming pool, were valued at $37 million in 2008. In 2009, Rotenberg obtained initial authorization for a third villa with a pool, tennis court and a private funicular; work was stopped for unknown reasons and the project was reauthorized in 2015, with construction resuming in 2018. Rotenberg did not comment on the investigation, but a source close to the family told OCCRP that the family doesn’t own the Èze home and rents it from an undisclosed landlord.

Boris’ son Roman, who is also subject to U.S. and Canadian sanctions, owns a home at 46 Cadogan Lane in Belgravia, London. According to British property records, he owns it through Cyprus-based Loktan Services Limited, which purchased it for nearly $7 million in 2007. A representative for Rotenberg did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Timchenko owns a mansion on Lake Geneva in Switzerland. According to French corporate records, Timchenko’s wife, Elena owns a 61.9% stake in Sogeco, a French firm that owns Le Club de Cavalière, a 5-star hotel and spa with its own private beach in Le Lavandou on the French Riviera. A representative for Timchenko did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Usmanov owns the 19th-century Beechwood House estate in Hampstead, London, built on 11 acres of land that include a squash court and several cottages. Previous owners include King Khalid of Saudi Arabia and Qatar’s Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani. According to British property records, Usmanov owns the property through Hanley Limited, a company incorporated in the Isle of Man.

He also owns Sutton Place, a Tudor-era manor built in 1525 on a 700-acre estate in Surrey, south of London. Formerly owned by J. Paul Getty, the historic property features a two-story mansion with multiple gardens, several libraries and a swimming pool. Queen Elizabeth I visited the estate in 1560. Usmanov owns the property through two offshore companies registered in Cyprus—Delesius Investments Limited and Bacerius Investments Limited—according to British property records. Through those companies, Usmanov owns additional land and several farms nearby.

Outside of the United Kingdom, Usmanov also has homes in Lake Tegernsee, Germany; Lausanne, Switzerland; Monaco; and Sardinia, Italy. His villa in northern Sardinia was reportedly frozen by Italian authorities on Friday. A representative for Usmanov did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Through his wife, Marina Dobrynina, Vekselberg owns two properties in the U.S. including a 4-bedroom home with a swimming pool on 5 acres of land at 15 Goodhill Road in Weston, Connecticut, purchased in 2001 for $5 million by Mojave Park Investments Limited and transferred to Marina a year later; and a 2,700-square-foot luxury condo at 111 West 67th St in New York, purchased in 2002 for $3 million. Vekselberg was sanctioned by the U.S. Treasury Department in 2018, but both properties are still owned by his wife Marina, according to property records.

Outside of the U.S., Vekselberg owns real estate in Italy, Latvia and in Zug, Switzerland. A representative for Vekselberg did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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