Major auction houses Christie’s, Sotheby’s set to open Hong Kong spaces


By AGENCY

As anchor tenant, Christie’s will take up floor six to floor nine of The Henderson commercial building (centre), developed by Henderson Land Development Co, in Hong Kong. Photo: Bloomberg

Major auction houses Christie’s and Sotheby’s have announced opening dates for their new spaces in Hong Kong.

Christie’s will open its new headquarters at The Henderson in September, while Sotheby’s will open its maison at Landmark Chater in July, the companies said.

As anchor tenant, Christie’s will take up floor six to floor nine of The Henderson – a skyscraper in the Central district developed by Henderson Land Development Co and designed by Zaha Hadid Architects – for a total of 4,645sq m.

Sales will be held there starting from its autumn auctions, alongside a three-month programme of events after the opening.

The building’s “pillar-less” floor plate and windows that keep out UV light work well for designing an auction house, said Betty Ng, founder of Collective Studio, the architect behind Christie’s headquarters. Other tenants at The Henderson include watchmaker Audemars Piguet Holding SA and investment firm Carlyle Group Inc.

At Sotheby’s, the company will open its 2,267sq m space located at Central’s Landmark Chater in July. The two-floor maison will have street access and a cafe, along with space to host auctions and exhibitions. It will also offer art and luxury objects available for immediate purchase.

The auction house has hired Rotterdam-based MVRDV as its architect.

The announcements coincide with Art Basel, which opened on March 28, with the fair finally returning to its pre-pandemic scale. Hong Kong remains Asia’s art hub even as economic challenges cause Chinese collectors to be more cautious about their spending.

“The market can have its ups and downs in the short term, but we have very strong commitment from our shareholders,” Christie’s Asia Pacific president Francis Belin said at a press event on Monday.

“We navigate the context as it is.”

Hong Kong’s commercial property market remains in a prolonged downturn, but record-high vacancies and lower rents have prompted some businesses to upgrade their spaces. Investors are watching closely for developments with both The Henderson and CK Asset Holdings Ltd’s Cheung Kong Center II, another skyscraper under construction in Central. – Bloomberg

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