Gitana Superyacht in West India Dock

It is like the old days (pre Covid) in West India Dock with the arrival of another superyacht. The latest visitor is the Gitana which has a length of 48.2m and was built in 1997 at the Feadship yard in the Netherlands.

The Gitana which was previously named Carolina, Noa VII and Katrion, features exterior design by Guido de Groot Design, interior design by John Munford Design, with naval architecture by De Voogt Naval Architects.

Up to 12 guests are accommodated on board the Gitana, and she also has accommodation for 10 crew members.

The yacht Gitana has a steel hull and aluminium superstructure. She is powered by 2 Caterpillar Inc engines, which give her a cruising speed of 13.5 kn and a top speed of 14.8 kn.

According information on the net, Gitana superyacht is currently for sale at an asking price of €16,500,000.

Motor yacht A2 in West India Dock

On a beautiful spring day, I took a wander into West India Dock to see the latest arrival. The motoryacht A2 has a very interesting history of owners.

The yacht A2 was built by Feadship in 1983. She was built as Circus II, for William Bennett. He was the founder of the gaming giant Circus Circus Enterprises. She was later sold to Les Wexner who named her Limitless. Later she was bought by Sir Thomas Ogden, who named her Masquerade.

In 2011 she was bought by George Lindemann, who named her A2 and sent her for a refit to Pendennis. The yacht’s classical design led to her use as a support vessel for the schooner Adela, which is owned by the Lindemann family.

What makes the yacht really interesting is to see the way that superyachts have developed since the 1980s, the A2 looks old fashioned compared to modern yachts but has a lot more character.

The refit by Pendennis took the classic yacht but bought it up to date with re-engineering all systems, installation of new deck equipment, modern bridge technology and state-of-the-art AV equipment throughout. The yacht can accommodate 12 guests and has a crew of 9.

Also in the dock is PHI which has been the subject of much debate, allegedly owned by a Russian oligarch, the ship has been in the dock for a number of weeks and may be here for a considerable time.

A Spring walk to Mudchute Park and Farm

We have a number of traditions at Isle of Dogs Life, one of the most enjoyable is the Spring visit to Mudchute Park and Farm.

The spring flowers are blooming, the blossom is filling the trees and the birdsong is at its loudest. Although I enjoy the urban life, I do yearn occasionally for a walk through a woodland and the sound and smell of rural life.

In the Isle of Dogs, among the concrete jungle, Mudchute Park and Farm is a rural oasis on our doorstep.

Like most things on the Isle of Dogs, Mudchute Park and Farm has a fascinating history, the large open space where the Mudchute Farm and Park now stands was for centuries grazing land. However during the building of the Millwall Docks in 1865 much of this land was used for storing the bricks that were used to build the dock walls and buildings. During construction of the Millwall Docks in 1865–7 the land remained a brickfield, However after the docks opened in 1868 the land was once again used for grazing.

This changed in 1875 when The Dock company developed an innovative system of dredging its docks designed by the company’s engineer, Frederic E. Duckham. This involved the pneumatic transmission of mud, out of the dock into a pipe which ran under East Ferry Road to be deposited on the grazing land creating a mudfield. Over time the mud accumulated to create small hills and bumps, however towards the end of the 19th Century there was concerns when the mudfield was considered a health hazard and steps were taken to close the pipe which was discontinued in 1910.

Gradually the hardened mudfield became known as the Mudchute and was later used for allotments . At the beginning of the war the land was used for gun placements. Many people may be surprised when they come across a large Ack Ack Gun in the farm but this is a reminder of its former use.

After the war, various schemes were put forward for the use of the land , however it was not until 1973 that the site was transferred to the GLC to be used for housing. However, there then began a campaign by local residents and supporters called the Association of Island Communities who wished the land to be used as public open space, the success of this campaign led to the creation of an urban farm in 1977.

In 1977, the Mudchute Association was formed to preserve and develop the area which they have done by adding to the existing fauna and flora to provide a diverse environment that attracts all forms of wild life. It was somewhat ironic that the mud that had caused dismay to many people was full of nutrients that provided good growing conditions for many plants.

Farm animals have been introduced over the years to give visitors a variety of experience, there has always been an educational aspect to the Associations work and close ties have been developed with local companies, local schools and other community groups.

Spring is a wonderful time to visit the farm with spring lambs running around the field. The outer parts of the park is woodland with lots of wildlife and paths that take you all over the park.

The sheep were not the only attractions, there are Alpaca enjoying the sunshine as were the various horses, cows, donkeys, chickens, turkey, pigs and much more. Mudchute Park & Farm is one of the largest inner City Farms in Europe with a wonderful collection of British rare breeds and currently home to over 100 animals and fowl. Set in 32 acres of countryside in the heart of East London, Mudchute is a community charity which runs a number of events throughout the year.

If you suffer from some the strains of urban life, why not take a wander to Mudchute and enjoy the wonderful rural surroundings of the park and farm.

Dutch Navy Ship HNLMS Tromp in West India Dock

On a very windy day, I went to have a look at the latest arrival in West India Dock. The HNLMS Tromp (F803) arrived yesterday and I am sure they were happy to get away from the various storms.

The 144.24 metres (473.2 ft) long HNLMS Tromp is a Provinciën-class frigate of the Royal Netherlands Navy. The ship was laid down in 1999, launched in 2001, and commissioned in 2003. The frigate is named after Dutch naval heroes Maarten Tromp (1598–1653) and Cornelis Tromp (1629–1691).

In 2010, Tromp was deployed to the Indian Ocean off the coast of Africa as part of Operation Atalanta, which is composed of European Union naval units. The operation was tasked with suppression of piracy in the region. In the same year Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands visited Norway aboard Tromp for a 3-day state visit.

Not sure why the ship is visiting the dock, but is a welcome visitor after a very quiet 2021.

Phoenix Superyacht in West India Dock

Start of a new year and superyachts are still arriving at West India Dock, the latest arrival is Phoenix which has a length of 41.14m (134’12”).

The yacht’s builder is Benetti from Viareggio in Italy who delivered superyacht Phoenix in 2021.

The Phoenix features exterior design by RWD and interior by Bonetti / Kozerski architecture DPC, with naval architecture by Benetti SpA.

Up to 10 guests can be accommodated on board the Phoenix, and she also has accommodation for 9 crew members including the captain.

The Phoenix has been in St Katherines Dock for a while and people have speculated that the yacht belongs to the new owners of St Katherines Dock but nothing official is known.

West India Dock Review 2021

It is a tradition of Isle of Dogs Life at this time of the year to write a review of the ships that have called at West India Dock. Whilst we have not had the numbers or variety of previous years, we have a number of interesting visitors.

It has been the year of the superyachts in the dock and three of the ships are still in the dock, Bravo Eugenia, PHI and Here Comes The Sun have been here since December. The old favourite tall ship Tenacious made an appearance and in Greenwich was the RRS Sir David Attenborough polar research ship for a time.

Bravo Eugenia superyacht

PHI superyacht

Moon Sand Superyacht

Here Comes The Sun Superyacht

Dr No

Super Yacht Kismet

Tall Ship Tenacious

RRS Sir David Attenborough polar research ship

Let us look forward to the return of more ships to the dock. The development surrounding West India Dock and Canary Wharf is gradually becoming completed and hopefully we can put the pandemic behind us in 2022.

I would like to wish our readers a happy and healthy New Year.

Bravo Eugenia superyacht in West India Dock

Last week, I was joking that in West India Dock it was like a superyacht convention, the arrival of the Bravo Eugenia has added to the excitement.

At 109 meters (358 ft) Bravo Eugenia is probably one of the longest superyachts we have had in the dock since the 2012 Olympics.

Bravo Eugenia was built by Oceanco in the Netherlands and was completed in 2018.

Bravo Eugenia has exterior design by Nuvolari Lenard, interior design by Reymond Langton Design Ltd., with naval architecture by Lateral Naval Architects.

Up to 14 guests are accommodated on board the superyacht with accommodation for 30 crew members.

For once, we know the owner of the yacht. It is Jerry Jones, owner of the NFL Dallas Cowboys team.

What we do not know is how long the $250 million yacht will be in London.

PHI superyacht in West India Dock

I do not know if superyacht owners are having a convention, but another superyacht has appeared in West India Dock. After a very quiet year for visitors to the dock, we are finishing the year with a bit of excitement.

The recent arrival is the 58.5m / 192ft superyacht PHI which was built at Royal Huisman’s newbuild facility in Vollenhove, The Netherlands. The brand new yacht can accommodate up to 12 guests in 6 staterooms, with 11 crew members.

PHI was designed by Cor D. Rover, with naval architecture Van Oossanen Naval Architects, and the interior of the yacht was designed by Lawson Robb.

The attractive yacht has a aluminium hull and aluminium superstructure with a top speed of 22.0 kn.

As usual in the secretive world of superyachts, it is not known how long the yacht will be in the dock or who the owner is.

Moon Sand Superyacht in West India Dock

After a very quiet summer, we have a little bit of excitement with the arrival of not one but two superyachts. We have already reported on the Here Comes The Sun yacht but the new arrival is the 55m superyacht Moon Sand.

Moon Sand was built by Lürssen who are known for building the largest yachts in the world, Moon Sand at 55m is the smallest yacht launched by the yard since 1955.

So we have in the dock, the largest yacht built by Amels with Here Comes The Sun and with Moon Sand the smallest yacht built by Lürssen since 1955.

Moon Sand was designed by Bannenberg & Rowell, Moon Sand is influenced by the design of the 1973 Lürssen superyacht Carinthia VI.

Moon Sand was built in Germany by Lurssen and is brand new being delivered in 2021. It is so new, there is little information about its layout inside.

Here Comes The Sun Superyacht in West India Dock

On a bright cold morning, we welcome Superyacht ‘Here Comes The Sun’ into West India Dock.

The 83m/272ft yacht was built by Amels in the Netherlands at their Vissingen shipyard. The interior was styled by British designer design house Winch Design and exterior design is the work of Tim Heywood Design.

When the ship was launched in 2017, she was largest superyacht ever built by Amels and was built to very high specifications. She was refitted in 2021.

Here Comes The Sun can accommodate up to 24 guests in 12 suites comprising five VIP cabins and four cabins that can operate as twins or doubles. She is also capable of carrying up to 27 crew onboard.

Her length is 83 m (272 ft), beam is 14.54 m (47.7 ft) and she has a draught of 3.85 m (12.6 ft).[4] The hull is built out of steel while the superstructure is made out of aluminium with teak laid decks. The ship has all the latest state of the art equipment like satellite communications, beach club, gym, deck jacuzzi, WiFi and air conditioning. It also has a piano, sauna, beauty salon, underwater lights and elevator.

Here Comes The Sun is certainly impressive and probably one of the largest superyachts that has visited West India Dock.

In the secretive world of superyachts, it is difficult to know who the owner is, but there are rumours the ship has changed hands recently for a considerable amount of money.

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