Ex-HK politician's wine collection goes for $6.2 mln

A former Hong Kong politician sold off part of his rare wine collection for over $6 million, auction house Christie's said on Sunday, after a scandal over a wine cellar at his home was partly blamed for his loss in last year's leadership race.

The city's former number two Henry Tang was set to become the chief executive in 2012 until a series of gaffes and the discovery of an illegal basement containing the cellar at his luxury home made him deeply unpopular.

The two-day auction, which fetched $6.22 million, included a wide selection of Burgundys with vintages ranging from 1949 to 2010, Christie's said, and dozens of wine aficionados attended with others bidding online.

The highlights of the sale were six magnums of Romanée Conti Vintage 1995 which sold for $156,695 and 12 bottles of Montrachet Vintage 1978 which sold for $109,687.

Though there were thousands of bottles on offer, they represented just a small portion of Tang's collection, the auction house said.

"He's at a point where there's enough wine that he can share them with joy," Christie's head of wine in China, Simon Tam, told AFP at the sale.

In an interview with Tang last month, the Wall Street Journal reported that none of the bottles in the Christie's sale were stored in the illegal cellar.

Tang is a well-known wine connoisseur who abolished duties on wine imports to Hong Kong in 2008, helping to turn the city into a regional wine centre.

Chief secretary until September 2011, Tang was thought to be Beijing's choice for Hong Kong's top job in the run-up to the chief executive election in March last year.

But his campaign began with a public admission of marital infidelity and suffered another blow with the discovery of the unauthorised basement, which reportedly also included a Japanese-style bath and a workout room.

His main rival Leung Chun-ying was subsequently handpicked for the post by a 1,200-strong election committee dominated by pro-Beijing elites, after China apparently switched sides.

Since his election, Leung has also apologised for illegal structures built without planning permission at his own luxury Hong Kong home.

Hong Kong is one of the most densely populated cities in the world and authorities regularly prosecute residents for making illegal additions to their houses.

Loading...

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • Indonesia informs convicts of execution, Frenchman excluded
    Indonesia informs convicts of execution, Frenchman excluded

    Indonesia said Saturday it has officially notified eight foreign drug convicts that they will be executed, but a Frenchman was granted a temporary reprieve after Paris stepped up pressure on Jakarta. The eight -- from Australia, Brazil, Nigeria and the Philippines -- have been transported to the high-security prison island of Nusakambangan where they will face the firing squad along with an Indonesian prisoner, despite strident international criticism. "Today, just now, we just finished …

  • Double Celebration
    Double Celebration

    Ropali Corporation, one of the top multi-brand motorcycle dealers in the Philippines, now holds two Guinness World Records. In the span of four days, Ropali Corporation broke two records, namely: The Largest Parade of Motorcycles with Sidecars and The Largest Simultaneous Motorcycle Burnout. As such, it also became the first motorcycle dealer in the Philippines to become a two-time Guinness World Record holder. The record for The Largest Parade of Motorcycles with Sidecars was previously …

  • United States seeks access to Philippine bases as part of Asia pivot
    United States seeks access to Philippine bases as part of Asia pivot

    The United States has asked for access to Philippine military bases in eight locations to rotate troops, aircraft, and ships as Washington shifts its forces to Asia and as China expands its military presence in the South China Sea. U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter, in a speech in Arizona, has outlined Washington's next phase in its Asia "pivot", deploying its most sophisticated destroyers, bombers and fighters to the region. The Asia "pivot" has already seen U.S. Marines rotating through the …

  • China's island-building to loom large at SE Asia summit
    China's island-building to loom large at SE Asia summit

    China's creation of new island footholds in contested seas will hover over a Southeast Asian summit that has become an annual test of the region's nerve in standing up to its massive neighbour. The South China Sea hot potato drops this year into Malaysia's lap as the rotating chair of the 10 member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and host of Monday's meeting. ASEAN states Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia and Brunei claim parts of the strategic South China Sea, but Beijing …

  • Philippines, China trade accusations over sea threats

    MANILA, Philippines (AP) — The Philippines accused China of aggressive maneuvers against its reconnaissance plane and fishermen in disputed seas where Beijing has stepped up construction of artificial islands, but China reiterated its claim on the strategic waterways. …

  • Indonesia orders execution of Mary Jane, 9 others
    Indonesia orders execution of Mary Jane, 9 others

    Indonesia has ordered preparations for the execution of 10 drug convicts, including Filipina Mary Jane Veloso, as the Philippine government filed yesterday a second appeal for judicial review of the case to save the maid from death by firing squad. The Attorney General’s Office (AGO) of Indonesia released an official letter dated April 23, instructing prosecutors to prepare for the execution of 10 convicts, the Jakarta Post reported yesterday. The execution would be conducted after the …

  • Business groups back K to 12 program
    Business groups back K to 12 program

    The government’s K to 12 program adding two more years to basic education received support from various business groups yesterday. However, they urged relevant government agencies to deal with issues regarding the implementation of Republic Act 10533, the Enhanced Basic Education Act or K-12 Law. In a statement, business groups led by the Philippine Business for Education (PBEd) said RA 10533 is a milestone piece of legislation that intends to bring the Philippines up to par with the rest of …

  • Happiest nations: Phl ranks 90th
    Happiest nations: Phl ranks 90th

    Switzerland is the happiest country in the world, while the Philippines placed 90th, according to a global ranking of happiness unveiled in New York on Thursday. Switzerland was followed closely by Iceland, Denmark, Norway and Canada. The 2015 World Happiness Report is the third annual report seeking to quantify happiness as a means of influencing government policy. The United Nations published the first study in 2012. …

POLL

Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Loading...
Poll Choice Options