Publicly Accessible Buildings

Rioja leading the way in the design stakes

Frank Gehry leads the way in Rioja .....

27 November 2007


Rioja, Spain’s premier winemaking region is now setting a benchmark for exceptional cutting-edge architecture and design, as well as world-renowned wines. Founded in 1860 Marqués de Riscal is an extremely established winery in Rioja. This successful producer was one of the first to introduce innovative winemaking techniques and the historic cellars are a popular visitor attraction. Yet today’s guests may be deceived about its true age, as in 2006 the grounds were completely transformed by leading architect Frank Gehry (responsible for the Guggenheim in Bilbao). At a cost of €70 million a state-of-the-art hotel was created – it has become an inspirational, design led, building set within this traditional landscape. Flowing wine is symbolised by layered, purple flecked metallic sheets blazing in the heat. The hotel is a haven for guests offering accommodation and a vinotherapy spa, using grape-based treatments; the on-site restaurant offers an elite selection of wines including its complex, savoury Reserva made from a blend of Tempranillo, Graciano and Mazuelo grapes paired with modern Basque-Riojan cuisine.

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