Luxury mega yachts have become part of the scenery in Portland Harbor, but one such vessel caused a bit of a stir late this week because of its association with a famous sea-going movie character: Captain Jack Sparrow.

The appearance of the Amphitrite, which was seen anchored in the harbor Friday morning, had some on the lookout for Johnny Depp, the actor who plays Sparrow in the “Pirates of the Caribbean” films.

The vessel was built in 2001 in Turkey for Depp. It is described as a 156-foot-long steamship-style motor yacht with multiple decks, five staterooms, and mahogany and teak woodwork. When the owner wasn’t using it, the yacht was chartered for as much as $130,000 a week.

Depp reportedly named the yacht Vajoliroja, which is a combination of the first letters of the names of his then-girlfriend Vanessa Paradis, himself, his 10-year-old daughter, Lily Rose, and his 8-year-old son, Jack.

Later, when he married Amber Heard, he changed the name to honor her, with the yacht becoming Amphitrite – the Greek sea goddess and wife of Poseidon.

According to the Telegraph newspaper, author J.K. Rowling bought the yacht from Depp in 2016, and sold it later in 2016 or early in 2017.


It was not clear who owns the yacht now or if it is being chartered.

Harbor Master Kevin Battle said he didn’t know who was aboard.

“They don’t tell me that,” Battle said. “They don’t even tell me when they’re coming or going.”

The yacht was anchored in the harbor and those aboard motored ashore via the old Portland Yacht Services at 58 Fore St.

When asked Friday morning how long it will be in town, Battle said, “until they leave.”

By Friday afternoon, the vessel had apparently weighed anchor and quietly steamed away. And no sign of Depp.

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