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Château Haut-Bailly Winery

Continuity and Harmony in the Landscape

Agence Romeo Architecture

Château Haut-Bailly Winery
By Francesco Pagliari -

The new winery of Château Haut-Bailly in Léognan, Aquitaine – one of France’s historic winemaking regions – slips effortlessly into a landscape whose features speak of consolidated values but whose winemaking practices have kept abreast of the constant refinements in the art of producing top quality wine.

Intrinsically French, the old castle is classic 17th century, surrounded by equally historic vineyards. Together they form an inseparable, centuries-old functional and architectural whole immersed in the natural landscape on the left banks of the river Garonne but not far from the region’s capital Bordeaux.

The winery has been designed as a continuation of a setting characterized by orderly stretches of vineyards and their architectural focal point, the traditional château, here sited on a small rise to dominate the estate. Mainly underground, the new building appears as another small rise in the land, its accessible green roof and landscaped garden allowing it to slip effortlessly into its surroundings. The hallmark of the new construction is discretion. The fluidly curving lines of its circular plan not only fit noiselessly into this consolidated estate; they also echo the fundamental processes of winemaking.

The sensory experience of continuity is carried through into the interior. Hidden from view so as to maintain the original characteristics of the historic landscape, the large interior spaces are strikingly luminous, enhanced by the use of light-colored materials. The spatial distribution follows the successive winemaking steps – from delivery of the grapes through to crushing fermentation and bottling – and is arranged horizontally on different levels. The ground floor is given over to the large double-walled
truncated-cone vats – some in stainless steel, others in cement. Set in circular formation and mainly resting on supports, they are part of...

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