Pair of 1926 Macallan whiskies sold for record $1.2m

Dubai Airport-based retailer Le Clos has set a world record for the most expensive bottle of whisky ever sold following the purchase of two 1926 bottles of The Macallan for $1.2 million.

The two extremely rare bottles of The Macallan 1926 featured labels commissioned by artists Sir Peter Blake and Valerio Adami, and originally retailed for £20,000, with the last known individual bottle sold in 2007 for US$75,000 at Christie’s.

Both bottles were sold to a private collector for US$600,000 each – which almost matches another world held by The Macallan for the most expensive single bottle of whisky sold at auction.

A six-litre decanter of The Macallan M Imperiale in a Lalique decanter was sold by Sotheby’s in Hong Kong for US$628,000 in January 2014, breaking the previous record of $460,000, which was also held by The Macallan in Lalique Cire Perdue.

This remains the most paid for a whisky at auction, however it equates to eight standard bottles, the equivalent of $78,000 per 70cl bottle, making this most recent sale of two bottles for $600,000 each, and not in an auction setting, proportionately far more significant.

The whisky itself is The Macallan 1926, which was distilled in 1926 then aged for 60 years in Sherry-seasoned oak barrels before being bottled and released in 1986.

Of the 40 bottles produced, 12 were given to British artist Sir Peter Blake, who co-created the Beatles’ album cover for Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, and 12 were given to the Italian artist Valerio Adami, (released in 1993) – one of the most acclaimed pop artists of the 21st century – to design.

Each artist created a bespoke label for the bottles, making them highly sought after by art-lovers and whisky collectors alike.

Geoff Kirk, director of Prestige at The Macallan, said: “These represent some of the most exclusive bottles ever produced making this an iconic sale that will be remembered worldwide for years to come. It is incredibly rare for The Macallan 1926 to be made available for purchase, and the sale offers whisky connoisseurs the chance to secure historic bottles emblematic of 20th century pop culture.

“The Macallan is renowned for its outstanding quality and this sale demonstrates the brand standing as a leading figure in the whisky industry worldwide.”

Le Clos is owned and operated by Maritime and Mercantile International (MMI), headquartered in Dubai, and currently has nine outlets located within Dubai International, which are open 24/7 365 days a year.

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