A Russian vodka billionaire has just snapped up a trophy Scottish sporting estate with a £25 million (US$31 million) price tag.
The 21,000-acre Tulchan Estate, which had been owned by the Litchfield family for 23 years, lies on the edge of Cairngorm National Park, 40 miles south of Inverness, according to listing agent Savills.
It is outfitted with a sprawling Edwardian lodge that sleeps up to 26, a two-bedroom cottage, ample hunting and fishing grounds, and five farms that produce their own meat, fruit and vegetables.
Many famous faces have visited the estate over the years including, King George V, Theodore Roosevelt and William Vanderbilt, according to its website.
A spokesman for Tulchan said in a statement that it had been been bought by a company for the principal benefit of Yuri Schefler, who has been a regular visitor to the estate in the past.
According to Forbes, Mr. Schefler owns S.P.I. Group, which produces and sells alcohol under 380 brands in 160 countries. Its best known brand is Stolichnaya vodka.
“It is understood that the new owner of TSEL will continue to operate the estate as a business along similar lines as the Litchfield family and plans to make additional investment and innovation in the business,” the spokesman said.
“This was an important factor to the sellers, as the estate makes a valuable contribution to the local economy employing 20 full time and a further 20 seasonal staff.”
Mr. Shefler, who has a net worth of $1.69 billion, splits his time between Great Britain, Switzerland and his yacht Serene, one of the largest in the world, according to Forbes.
Scotland’s sporting and agricultural estates, which in most cases have thousands of acres of land for hunting, shooting and fishing, as well as grand houses often with historical connections, are unique to the country and have long been popular with wealthy investors, who are attracted by the privacy they offer. Many of these estates can also produce significant income in the form of renewable energy and other industries.
Notable estate owners include the wealthy Danish family behind Lego, who own two sprawling neighboring properties in Scotland, and Anders Holch Povlsen, the Danish billionaire fashion magnate.
A spokesperson for S.P.I. Group did not respond immediately to request for comment.
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