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Mr Viet surrounded by his Guinness World Records whisky collection (1)

Vietnamese whisky collector confirmed as owner of record-breaking £10m collection

By LLM Reporters on 26th November 2019

A Vietnamese whisky collector has been confirmed by Guinness World Records as the proud owner of the most valuable whisky collection.

The world-beating collection belongs to Mr Viet Nguyen Dinh Tuan of Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam and has been valued by the world’s leading rare whisky valuation experts at Rare Whisky 101 at a ‘hammer price’ of £10,770,635 (£13,032,468 adding 21% buyers premium if the collection were sold through a UK auctioneer such as Sotheby’s).

The collection comprises 535 of the world’s rarest, oldest and finest bottles of Scotch and Japanese whisky. Highlights include one of the world’s only complete Macallan Fine and Rare collections, including the now iconic 1926 “Fine & Rare”. Only forty bottles of the Macallan 1926 were ever released. Mr Viet owns three.

The 1926 Macallan Fine and Rare is also the world’s most expensive bottle of whisky having sold recently for a hammer price of £1,200,000 (£1,452,000 including buyer’s premium), as part of private collection which was claimed by Sotheby’s to be the ultimate collection of whisky ever to be sold at auction.

Mr Viet’s collection also holds one of only twelve bottles of the oldest Bowmore ever released, which also happens to be both the most expensive Bowmore and the most expensive Islay malt in the world, with a similar bottle fetching £300,000 (hammer price) at auction recently.

Mr Tuan surrounded by his Guinness World Records whisky collection (2)
Mr Tuan is surrounded by his Guinness World Records whisky collection

From Islay to Campbeltown, the collection also includes one of only twenty four bottles of the 1919 vintage Springbank. A similar bottle sold recently for £220,000 (hammer price) making it the world’s most expensive bottle of Springbank.

Mr Viet, a businessman and resident of Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam, has been collecting rare and vintage bottles of whisky for more than 20 years. Having amassed his collection of more than 500 bottles, locked securely in a bespoke whisky lounge at home, Mr Viet has no intention of reining in his passion.

He explanied: “For me, whisky collecting has been my life’s passion. Every spare I moment I get, I’m searching auction sites and trading websites to find famous and rare whiskies from around the world. Clearly this requires a lot of patience and no shortage of tenacity, but I’m proud of my efforts. As for my collection, I have no intention of selling any of it. Not one bottle. In fact, I’ll continue to hunt for more old and rare bottles and add to and enrich it.”

On discovering he is the now the official world record holder, Mr Viet added: “My first reaction was one of surprise. However, I’m really happy and feel honoured to be recognized by Guinness World Records as the owner of the world’s most valuable whisky collection. It feels like an acknowledgment of all my hard work and dedication over the past 20 years.”

Mr Viet's Guinness World Records whisky collection (1)
Rare Whisky 101 arrived at the collection’s valuation by determining each bottle’s expected open market price

Rare Whisky 101 arrived at the collection’s valuation by determining each bottle’s expected open market price; in effect what the collection could realistically be expected to fetch if sold at auction within the UK in the current market. The valuation was subsequently submitted to Guinness World Records, who confirmed the feat by certification in November this year.

Andy Simpson, co-founder of Rare Whisky 101, said: “We were somewhat gobsmacked, not to mention a little envious, when we realised the breadth and depth of Mr Viet’s collection. It’s a truly stunning example of one person’s twenty year passion and desire to seek out the finest, rarest bottles of whisky in the world. There are certainly reasonably well known whisky collections around the world which contain far more bottles from a volume perspective.

“However, from a pure value perspective, we’re confident this collection is head and shoulders above the rest. Mr Viet is, what we believe to be, one of possibly three collectors in the world to own all three variants of the legendary Macallan 1926 bottling (the Fine and Rare label, the Peter Blake label and the Valerio Adami label), which recently broke the world record. That said, it may well be the case that Mr Viet is the only collector in the world to have three bottles.”