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Bordeaux wine estate Chateau Fauchey sold to Chinese investor

[LONDON] A Chinese property investment company has acquired French wine estate Chateau Fauchey on the right bank of the Garonne river southeast of Bordeaux, according to an emailed statement from Maxwell-Baynes-Vineyards, an affiliate of Christie's International Real Estate.

The estate comprises the 15th century chateau along with 25 hectares of land, of which 6.5 hectares are AOC Cadillac Cotes de Bordeaux vines, according to Maxwell-Baynes-Vineyards. It identified the purchaser as Profitsun Holdings (Hong Kong), which also bought the estate's stock of wine, it said. The purchase price wasn't disclosed.

Investors from China have bought more than 100 Bordeaux wine estates since starting to focus on the area in 2010, seeking both access to supplies of wine for the growing Chinese domestic market and also historic properties which can be used to expand wine tourism.

The sellers were the Emmanuelli family, which bought Chateau Fauchey in 2010, converted it to organic farming by 2013 and established a guest house business in 2014 on the property. Profitsun intends to build on that business and distribute the wines to members of its clubs located mainly in Beijing, Shenzhen and Hong Kong, according to Maxwell-Baynes-Vineyards.

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The transaction follows other similar deals in Cadillac Cotes de Bordeaux. In January 2015, Chinese entrepreneur James Zhou bought Chateau Renon in Tabanac, while in December 2014 Hangzhou-based New Century Tourism Group bought Chateau de Birot, a 34-hectare property with an 18th century mansion and 25 hectares of vines, from the Fournier-Casteja family.

While Chinese buyers have generally focused on mid-tier properties typically selling for less than 1 million euros (S$1.58 million) per hectare, that has supported demand across the region, where the top 150 estates now command prices ranging from 1 million euros to more than 10 million euros a hectare.

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