Château Le Bon Pasteur in Pomerol, owned by the Rolland family, has been sold to a Chinese businessman, marking the first grand cru property in Bordeaux to be sold to an Asian investor.
Château Le Bon Pasteur in Pomerol has changed hands, but will it change name?
According to The Wine Cellar Insider, the property was bought by Sutong Pan, chairman of Hong Kong-based investment holding company Goldin Financial Holdings, last December, though the deal was only finalised this week.
The deal took longer than usual to complete as Le Bon Pasteur belonged to more than one member of the Rolland family.
The price has not been disclosed yet, but it could set a new benchmark for prices paid per hectare in the region.
The 7-hectare estate, which had been in the Rolland family since the 1920s, is planted with 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Franc on gravel, sand and clay soils.
Le Bon Pasteur’s new owner, Sutong Pan (right)
In addition to Le Bon Pasteur, Jeff Leve reports that the deal also involved two additional Right Bank estates belonging to the Rolland family: Château Rolland-Maillet in St Emilion and Château Bertineau St Vincent in Lalande Pomerol, comprising 16 hectares in total.
It is expected the Rolland management team will remain with the estate, though when the drinks business contacted the estate, they refused to comment, neither confirming nor denying the sale.
“We will be releasing a statement on Monday, we cannot comment at this time about the sale,” consultant Michel Rolland’s daughter Stephanie told db.
In addition to finance and property, Goldin Financial Holdings also has a wine investment arm – in June 2011, Mr Pan snapped up the 16-hectare cult Napa Valley winery Sloan Estate for US$40m.
The estate, to be renamed Pan Estate in honour of its new owner, is managed Pan’s daughter Jenny.
And it looks like the magnate is keen to add further high end estates to his portfolio: “We will continue to look out for other wine related opportunities both within China, Hong Kong and in other parts of the world,” he said in a statement on his company’s website.
In addition to wine, Sutong has a passion for horses and is chairman of the Tianjin Goldin Metropolitan Polo Club.
Le Bon Pasteur produces just over 1,000 cases of wine a year.
There are currently around 50 Bordeaux estates owned by Chinese, Hong Kong or Taiwanese investors, but this figure is rising by the week and is expected to hit 200 in the next five years.
Just last week, the six-hectare Château La Commanderie in Pomerol was sold to young Singaporean couple Andrew and Melody Kuk for £6.8m.
Earlier this month, Château La Fleur Jonquet in Graves, Château Patarabet in Saint Emilion, Château l’Enclos in Sainte Foy la Grande and Château de Pic in Cadillac were all sold to Asian investors.
Of the 35 châteaux sold in Bordeaux in 2011, 21 went to Chinese buyers, while 23 of the 37 châteaux sold in the region last year were Chinese bought.
Capitalising on the trend, auction house Christie’s launched Vineyards by Christie’s International Real Estate, the world’s first estate agency for would-be vineyard buyers, in Hong Kong this month.
Run by both wine experts and luxury property specialists, the agency will offer a consultancy service for clients looking to acquire vineyards in the world’s most sought after wine regions.