The Williamsburg Winery, the iconic property near Colonial Williamsburg and Jamestown, has been listed for sale.
Rick Walden, owner, agent and Realtor of Virginia Estates, confirmed the winery had been listed on its website.
The property, 5800 Wessex Hundred, spans 342 acres with the winery, two restaurants — the Gabriel Archer Tavern and Cafe Provencal located in the Wedmore Place hotel — the Retail Wine Shop and multiple event spaces including Wessex Hall which frequently hosts weddings and other occasions, according to the description of the Virginia Estates’ website.
“The Williamsburg Winery (TWW) ca. 1985 and never before offered, is an iconic, unique, & profitable winery & diversified hospitality business with strong branding located in a vibrant well-known destination—-less than 3 mi. from Colonial Williamsburg and less than a 1-day drive for 30 million people,” according to the sale description.
In addition, the winery can hold up to 60,000 cases, 52 acres are “under vine with well-selected varietals” and the Wedmore Place, a “boutique, European-inspired inn/hotel” with 28 rooms and suites.
The sale includes “everything except the owner’s residence and the son’s residence,” Walden said.
“The wine inventory is not part of that part,” he added about the sale. “I think that part comes out of $6 million…”
Paul “Tyler” Williams, partner and Realtor at Virginia Estates confirmed the sale of the winery was not related to the coronavirus pandemic and the location in Virginia Beach was included in the sale.
The listing was posted on Sept. 18.
“Oh no no no, this is not COVID-related or any stressful thing,” he said. “It’s just a matter of the current owners are ready to be doing other things…it’s just time to let others take it on.”
He said the satellite locations in both Virginia Beach and Colonial Williamsburg are a “perpetual lease” which means the person who buys the $40 million winery would get an additional 74 acres on top of the 342 acreage.
Williams noted the winery is currently operating with restricted hours and “they are pretty well up and running” while the listing is still active.
When asked who the contact person would be for questions during this process and transition period, Williams said typically new ownership are “happy” to honor the bookings.
The Virginia Estates’ website notes there is an “experienced and talented management team in place” so is the new owner under an obligation to keep the existing staff?
“It’s really optional, up to new ownership but the fact of the matter is it’s a very very qualified, very professional staff,” he said, adding some of staff are experts in their field. “It would really be to the benefit of new ownership to step in and get their feet on the ground.”
Stephanie Heinatz of Consociate Media and spokeswoman for The Williamsburg Winery emailed the following statement to WYDaily which was sent from Patrick G. Duffeler, founder, chairman and CEO of The Williamsburg Winery to his staff and stakeholders:
“The Williamsburg Winery continues to do well; it is in a healthy financial condition in spite of all of the COVID-19 restrictions. General management is looking forward to 2021 and the future. A number of projects are under study, including several CAPEX projects. The Future Direction Committee of the Board has been assigned the task of identifying new partners i.e., investors that have the capacity to acquire the Company and to grow it to its fullest potential. In the meantime, I will remain in my capacity as Founder, Chairman, & CEO.”
Duffeler Sr. was raised in Europe and by the time he was a teenager, he was traveling from Norway to Portugal, learning about wine. After going to school in the U.S. and working abroad, he bought a 300-acre property in Williamsburg in 1983 and founded The Williamsburg Winery two years later in 1985, according to the winery’s website.
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