Many of China’s wealthiest investors have shown interest in the vineyards of Bordeaux, France. Pierre Goguet, president of the Bordeaux Chamber of Commerce, said that the number of Chinese winery owners has increased from 3 to 83 in just five years.
The South China Morning Post reports that much of the interest vested in the red wine region is due to tourism and possible expansion of wine exports to mainland China.
Chinese wineries in France are looking to attract Chinese travelers as they flock to European destinations. The Bordeaux Chamber reports that France saw 1.4 million Chinese visitors last year.
Just as Chinese investors are looking to attract Chinese visitors, French wineries are also vying for their attention. Bordeaux has plans to open a wine exhibit in 2016 titled Cite des civilisations du vin—Civilizations of Wine.
By 2017, there will also be a high-speed railway designed specifically for transporting wine aficionado’s from Paris to Bordeaux.
Although the wine industry in France has appealed to some Chinese business developers, a recent dip in the sales of foreign wines in China has some a little weary. Wine imports fell to 6.8 percent this year.
One key to keeping the wine flowing in China might be opening additional hotels and attractions in Bordeaux. Goguet said that one Hong-Kong based hotel group did look into expanding in France, but “upon further evaluation of visitor growth.”
Bordeaux is currently home to more than 8,000 vineyards, but only 5 percent are owned by foreign investors. For now it seems that only the wealthiest Chinese with a passion for wine will continue to invest in France.
image credit: Ståle Prestøy