Above: Tuscan Vineyard in Chianti, Italy
Most people dream of having their own vineyard on their estate, and for many luxury homebuyers that dream is being turned into a reality. Many known celebrities own vineyards and wineries. Like with any business, it offers great tax benefits and the challenge of starting a new enterprise. Other celebrities such as Johnny Depp, Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Kate Moss, and David Beckham to name a few own vineyards for their personal use.
Above: Johnny Depp recently listed his 37 acre French estate (basically an entire small village) near Tropez for 16.5 Million. Depp’s estate includes a vineyard on the ground, a wine-tasting cave, and an authentic Provencal village restaurant and bar.
Vineyard properties around the world are becoming the latest must-have accessory in Luxury. For many lifestyle buyers, the scenery that a vineyard offers is a classic view and rustic feel. It also reaps numerous other lifestyle benefits such as a much needed change to the buyers everyday routine and getting to reap what you sew and drink the fruits of your labor, literally. But for many of these buyers, the prime real estate that comes along with a vineyard as equally as important as the vines themselves.
While all of these benefits sound appealing, there are many factors to consider such as where to buy and the level of involvement needed to care for the vineyards once purchased. Investing in fine wine is one thing, but diving in heads on and investing in vineyards is a whole other story. To some it is a ‘one up’ to the traditional wine investment, but it typically requires a larger amount of capital to get up and running.
For many the price of the land merely the starting point. Other typical expenses can include establishing and maintaining the vines, harvest labor, machinery and fuel, and distribution (bottling and labeling if its for personal consumption). For example, in Napa Valley, where there is a shortage of fine grapes and acre prices can reach up to $300,000 per acre, the start up costs to get a boutique vineyard up and running can approach $2 Million.
Buyers should keep in mind how hands on they want to get when seeking a vineyard, since the monetary return on investment is not as lucrative as common stocks or bonds (although typically safer), it truly has to be a labor of love.
Some of the aforementioned celebrities, such as David Beckham and Brad Pitt, employ a team to deal with production. This leaves them with the benefit of consuming the end result, but it is for good reason. Operating a functioning vineyard is extremely time consuming and requires a lot of hard work. However, for many owners it is a new and refreshing hobby, that can potentially turn into a profitable business. Other owners simply like to have their own brand of wine to share with family and friends, and the reward of seeing others enjoy your wine and something you crafted and produced is highly rewarding.
All things considered, the rise of purchases in boutique vineyards in areas like Bordeaux, Napa Valley, Champagne, Northeast US, and Southeast England has spiked over the last few years.
Highlighted below are some of the most luxurious vineyard properties currently on the market around the world:
6175 Oregon Road, Cutchogue, NY – $7,500,000 USD
This rare waterfront estate comprises a classic farmstead with 1860s farmhouse, two-story barn with modern poolhouse, pool and detached art/exercise studio, along with 32 acres of preserved farmland, including a 5+ acre vineyard.
5580 Alpine Road, Santa Rosa, California – $11,000.000 USD
Spanish/Mediterranean View Estate & Winery. 120 ac +/- Two story 11545 sq.ft villa with 5 plus bedrooms, overall prop sq. ft is about 16,000 sq. ft+/- with 9 bedrooms, 9 full bath rooms and three half bath rooms. Perfect for conferences & weddings, 3 offices in addition/master suite, large living & dinning room, media room, full gym, fully landscaped, second unit, original three bedroom farmhouse with winery. Wine label, 100+ guests for weddings.
La Rochelle, Atlantic Coast, France – $5,400,000 USD
This magnificent equestrian property of 15,6 ha is comprised of a beautiful south Louisiana style house of 220 m² (6 bedrooms/bathrooms) with swimming pool, an outbuilding of 30.2 m² used as a superb summer dining room (with BBQ), an amazing 100 m² apartment (1 bedroom) with terrace overlooking the property, a 52 m² independent guest house and various outbuildings including a horse stable (18 boxes, 4 showers, a saddle room, 2 staff apartments), an outdoor and an indoor arenas, a top-notch horse walker and a big hay storage barn. The property is surrounded by top quality land fenced in paddocks with water in each paddock (the property has its own private water supply).
Photo Courtesy: theguardian.com, mansionsglobal.com, christiesrealestate.com