Wine Hotels: Three of the Best
We raise a glass to a trio of Europe’s most luxurious hotel-wineries that mix tastings, treatments, terroir and other diversions for the committed oenophile
April 27 2019
The world’s most famous living architect, Frank Gehry, not only opened the door for the profusion of architecturally wondrous wineries around Rioja with his Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, but followed it up with a breathtaking hotel and winery in the wine heartland itself. Built for the Marquez de Riscal, Rioja’s oldest winery, it’s a freeform symphony of crazy, billowing surfaces and folds, and boasts a groundbreaking “vinotherapy” spa, restaurants and its own winery.
The Epicurean Experience package includes accommodation in a Deluxe Spa Wing room, breakfast and a Tasting Menu dinner, with a guided tour of the winery itself.
From €450; marriott.co.uk
While the Champagne region has long been a must-do for the oenophile, it’s not been easy to do it in fine style – until now. At last, a five-star hotel has opened in the heart of fizzing France. The Royal Champagne is an odd-looking place – all angles and modernity.
But it grows on you, and sipping your morning espresso from a balcony above a parcel of prime Bollinger vines gives one a suitably satisfying start to the day. As you’d expect, the spa and restaurant sont formidables. Consider the sumptuous Suite Joséphine for pue luxe.
From €510 (approx. £445) per night. royalchampagne.com
Amid vineyards surrounded by forrests, Bordeaux’s family-owned Les Sources de Caudalie has as much the feel of a rural hamlet as a luxury hotel. There are three restaurants for just 61 rooms, a majestic spa and oodles of rural charm across a series of rustic buildings.
The time to visit is in the autumn, for the hotel’s ‘In the Footsteps of the Winemaker’ package during the harvest season. Guests can grab pruning shears and get stuck in at the estate’s Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte winery, and enjoy cellar tours, tastings, special menus drawing on the best of the terroir and insights into Bordeaux viniculture.
From €1,600 for two peoplesources-caudalie.com