Wine auctions hot up in Asia

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Christie's SK Wine lot 72.jpgIt’s a good time to be in the auction business these days. Retail sales are flat but the auction business is strong, says Zachys Auction Director, Jeff Zacharia. Christie’s Hong Kong wine sale “Modern Classics:A Selection from the SK Networks Collection” notched up an incredible HK$ 48.13 million (US$ 6.2 million) with 100% sell-through rate and several auction records broken.”This is the highest sale total for Christie’s Wine Sales in Hong Kong, wrote Olivia Lo


The bidding from Asia and around the world was enthusiastic with most of the lots selling over their top estimates. David Elswood, Christie’s International Director of the Wine Department for Europe and Asia, noted that US$ 6.2 million was nearly twice the total estimate and the highest total for Christie’s wine sales in Hong Kong.
This is a strong indication that demand for fine wines in pristine condition continues to grow apace. This auction took place in Hong Kong on Saturday, 18 September 2010. The next Hong Kong wine sale is scheduled for November 26th and 27th.
Retailing wine from as far back as 1944, Zachys later joined Christie’s in the wine auction business. Subsequently in 2002 they branched out on their own. Their first Hong Kong Wine Auction was in 2008 although they had been conducting regular auctions in New York prior to that.
Jeff Zacharia, who is Auction Director, in an interview with the Wall Street Journal speaking about Hong Kong vs. New York wine auction markets, said, “There are certain wines that don’t sell as well in Hong Kong as they do in New York; for example, they don’t tend to buy much California wine or Italian wine or lesser known Rhônes in Hong Kong. But they also like to show up at the auctions in person in Hong Kong which can be exciting, while in New York we do a lot of business over the phone.”

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