Sotheby’s HK sale ‘smashes’ private owner record

The ‘Tran-scend-ent’ fine wine sale held by Sotheby’s in Hong Kong at the weekend has “smashed” the record for a private owner collection, making US$30 million.

The three day sale (29-31 March), realised HK$233,582,518 (US$29,756,077) in total, far surpassing the low pre-sale estimates and saw over 2,500 lots sold.

The leading lot were three 12-bottle cases of 1990 Romanée-Conti from Domaine de la Romanée-Conti which sold for HK$2.7m (US$347,520) each, while a case of 1985 Romanée-Conti realised HK$2.3m (US$300,131) and a further three cases of 1945 Château Mouton Rothschild HK$1.9m (US$252,742) each.

Already the highest estimated wine auction ever, the sale offered an exceptional array of blue chip fine wine from Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, the Rhône and Italy – with 619 lots of Coche-Dury, 359 lots of Dom Pérignon, 142 lots of Guigal and 249 lots of Mouton Rothschild among the collection.

With a final total of almost US$30m, it surpasses the US$21.9m made at the sale of Bill Koch’s collection in New York in 2016 and comes close to matching the US$34.5m made through the sale of Henri Jayer’s cellar last June.

Jamie Ritchie, Worldwide Head of Sotheby’s Wine, commented: “Transcendent Wines was aptly named, setting the record for the highest value private wine collection ever sold at auction at US$30 million, beating the total achieved at Sotheby’s in 2016 for the William I Koch sale.

“This result continues our record-setting trend and marks a significant moment in the history of wine auctions, presenting a new benchmark in the wine industry.

“The scale, quality and value of this collection is totally unprecedented, and the superb result is a fitting outcome, as collectors continue to compete for the world’s greatest wines.

“To present the most important single-cellar collections at auction is to quench the insatiable thirst of today’s enlightened collectors who are buying to open and enjoy the bottles, a sentiment very much in tune with the man who put together this outstanding collection.”

Another sale is being held in Hong Kong today featuring more lots of Mouton Rothschild and rare Moutai baijiu.

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