Tokyo real estate developer builds “wine apartment” complex

A swanky apartment in Tokyo’s Shibuya district is every connoisseur’s dream, offering access to a 10,000-bottle wine cellar and its own sommelier.

The aptly named “Wine Apartment” in Shibuya features a temperature- and humidity-controlled room in the basement, with 18 flats that can be rented to house a large wine collection.

Each of the units comes with a wine fridge for 26 bottles and a rack for glasses. Monthly rents range from 239,000 to 258,000 yen for a 42 to 46 square-meter space.

For larger collections of up to 300 bottles, tenants pay a monthly charge of about 20,000 yen. A sommelier will visit the building on weekends to advise residents on how to pair food and wine.

“Tokyo is a unique market for wine lovers,” said Takayuki Suzuki, owner of Inovv Inc property development firm. “They do not just enjoy drinking wine but also have academic interest in wine. Wine Schools are always busy here. That is why I am seeing potential for a property like this.”

Suzuki said he is planning a second wine apartment complex with 30 units, also in Tokyo, to open in 2015.

“I want to develop apartment buildings with a touch of playful spirit,” said Suzuki.

Taizo Osawa, a tenant and owner of Osawa winery in New Zealand’s Hawkes Bay, plans to use the space as his office and a tasting room for customers.

“This venue should help us expand our sales network in Japan,” Osawa said.

By: Maesie Bertumen

Image: sparktography/Flickr

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