How To Buy A VINEYARD
MAXIM Australia|May 2020
From acquiring the perfect estate to bottling world-class wine...
Jared Paul Stern

For the truly wealthy, one elegant solution to increased tariffs on French wine readily presents itself: buy your own vineyard. Despite burgeoning interest and a surge in acquisitions eating into available inventory, there are over 80 vineyards and wine estates currently listed for sale with Vineyards-Bordeaux, the Christie’s International Real Estate affiliate and market leader located in what is arguably the world’s most famous wine region.

Chinese buyers now own about 170 vineyard estates, or châteaux, in Bordeaux, Vineyards-Bordeaux cofounder and executive partner Michael Baynes tells MAXIM — billionaire Jack Ma, China’s richest man, reportedly owns several of them — and the uptick in investment means that “Bordeaux wine estates are more popular today than we have seen for a long time.” Which we predict also means that prices will only go up from here.

“THE OENOPHILE INVESTOR HAS OPTIONS INCLUDING TUSCANY IN ITALY, ARGENTINA’S MENDOZA AND THE NAPA VALLEY, TO NAME A FAMOUS FEW.”

As an example, an attractive property with a historic mansion with origins dating back to the late 1700s and about 200 acres, a quarter of which is planted with the classic Bordeaux blend of Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon, is listed for about US$4.5 million.

Of course France is just one of the world’s great wine-producing countries that also offers attractive luxury real estate opportunities. The oenophile investor has options including Tuscany in Italy, Argentina’s Mendoza and the Napa Valley, to name a famous few. Baynes points out that selecting a vineyard depends on an investor’s personal goals and business strategy. His clients’ wishlist often includes a desirable residence, attractive landscape, vines producing top-quality fruit, well-stocked cellars, state-of-the-art equipment and a fully operational winery with “strong Parker points” — referring to Robert Parker, the world’s most influential wine critic.

ABOVE: More stunning architectural elements at Italy’s Marchesi Antinori; OPPOSITE: A US$14.25-million wine-country estate in the Napa Valley listed with Sotheby’s International Realty is an architectural masterpiece in its own right.

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