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Wine and architecture

With the craze for wine tourism, the wineries have abandoned their purely industrial role for a more cultural approach. Situated in the wonderful landscapes from France to Argentina, and from Australia to Spain, these new ultra modern wine cellars open to the public, match architecture and wine to exalt the senses. These at the forefront equipments help to modernize the wine production, whilst focusing on the aesthetic approach in order to seduce the visitors. Many renowned architects have left their footprint in this activity. Bofill is a pioneer. In 1987, he conceived the underground winery for Château Lafitte Rothschild. Since then, the trend has accelerated, especially during these last years. It is not astonishing to see the greatest names associated to wine. Santiago Calatrava draws metallic undulations close to the sierra Cantabria for Ysios, in Laguardia (2001). Foster & Partners for the Bodegas Portia in Ribera del Duero (2010), taking advantage of the local topography to reduce the buildings’ energy demand; Frank O. Gehry and his famous bodega wrapped with coloured titanium sheets or Marqués de Riscal in Elciego or Zaha Hadid, offering to the Bodegas Lopez de Heredia a wine tasting cellar, where her style is easily recognizable. Among the most outstanding achievements, in France and particularly in Saint-Emilion, let’s point out: the high towers of Château Faugères designed by Mario Botta (2009), the red stainless steel setting of Jean Nouvel at Château La Dominique (2013) or the concrete belvedere winery overlooking the vineyards of Château Cheval Blanc signed by Christian de Portzamparc (2011). For the Clos d’Estournel, Jean Michel Wilmotte transforms in 2008 some working places in magnificent visit opportunities. Robberecht & Daem discretely inserted in the local environment the wine cellar for Château le Pin, Pomerol (2011); the Foster & Partners office has a very delicate approach for the Château Margaux winery (2015). Sometimes, restaurants, hotels and art centers are created next to the wineries, like the contemporary art exhibition hall of the Château La Coste (Jean Nouvel, 2011). These vast programs illustrate the desire to renew, without losing them, the winemaking traditions by combining content and container for the prestige of the “Grands Crus”.

The Archi-Europe team

Portrait of the month

1 Anouk Legendre and Nicolas Desmazières

2 Prehistory Museum, Jeongok, South Korea (2011)

3 The Terraces, Nanterre, France (2012)

Flohara, Moroccan Pavilion,Venice Biennial 2014

Flohara, Moroccan Pavilion,Venice Biennial 2014

Pavilion of France, Expo Milan 2015

6 Wine City, Bordeaux (2016)

6b Wine City, Bordeaux (2016)

7 Organic façade

8 Housing tower, Strasbourg, France

9 Project Vivo

9b Project Vivo

XTU Architects, Paris

Dreaming of a green and ecologically-responsable city, full of life, Anouk Legendre and Nicolas Desmazières are close to making a revolution in the building activity with their very cutting-edge technological researches.

The two architects met each other during their studies in 1985. Both have graduated from the Paris La Villette High School of Architecture and were immediately encouraged by a certain recognition. Indeed, after winning Europan and 'Pan Université' Prizes, they were also laureates in 1992 of the 'Album des jeunes architectes', an initiative to select young architects and landscape architects (less than 35 years old) and to help them to integrate the profession. During approximatively ten years, they realized mainly public and university buildings. In 2000, they created their own office in Paris called XTU – the letter X for the unknown in a mathematical equation and TU with reference to SITU, indicating the place and the landscape, and showing their will to associate architecture with research. During a certain period they favoured massive forms, before visiting Iceland, where their vision of architecture was completely upset. They put aside the geometric forms to concentrate on a universe full of curves. This new approach can be seen in the Jeongok Prehistory Museum (South Korea) which was completed in 2011. This realization brought them renown. Perfectly integrated in the environment, this 100 m long building with a metallic skin stretches full of curves. «This project was a turning point in our production, as well as our project in the Reunion Island for the Civilization Museum. We have in this case tried to see how to exploit the local resources. (..) We had ourselves started to think about energy autonomous buildings and our research led to organic façades. Regretfully, this project did not take place, but like the one realized in Korea, it has nevertheless transformed our vision of architecture.»

To promote vegetable gardening on the roofs, they equip 160 residential buildings in the Nanterre Terrasses complex (supplied in 2012) with greenhouses and vertical gardens and they also favour systems with natural ventilation. For the ecological district with energy exchange in Saint Ouen (within an EDF competition), they foresee 4000 sqm of roof gardens. For the Bordeaux private University, they follow the principle of passive tapping on the south façade with a natural ventilation in summer. The experience proposing is a much more efficient solution than simple solar panels. Their projects, very different from one another depending on the context, are often quite surprising. Probably by the challenge they express. Only to mention the construction concept created in the Moroccan Pavilion of the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennial which challenges the housing conventions by offering a shelter in the worse climatic conditions in an inhospitable desert. The basic idea is to use inflatable cells, easily transportable. Sand, water and an hydrogel would be mixed to a bacteria which would solidify and be sprayed on the bubbles to strengthen the structure. First architecture prize of the Milan's World Fair 2015, the French pavilion, with low energy consumption could be completely dismantled. More than 1500 cubic meters of wood were needed to represent the diversity of the French land. It is important to point out the assembling technique, without visible fixings.

Anouk Legendre and Nicolas Desmazières have also designed the Wine City, a building with audacious forms recently inaugurated in Bordeaux. The architects have imagined a place with plenty of wine symbols, with numerous curves, like as if it was winding up on itself before climbing towards the sky. This sensual roundness can be also felt in the interior spaces and materials. Made of silkscreen printed glass panels and perforated lacquered aluminium sheets, its façade has golden reflections, reminding of the blond stones of the Bordeaux façades, whilst its wooden structure is wrapped with organic solar captors, facilitating air circulation.
Working on positive energy environmental buildings, the architects tried to put aside the photovoltaic solar captors and use alternatively micro-alga. Each project is an opportunity to move into a new investigation field and propose a concrete innovation. For more efficiency, and associated to various research centers (FSB, Algosource Technologies, CNRS and others), their ambition is to develop an organic façade system with three glass panels. In one of the gaps between the glass sheets, water will feed solar alga. These organisms use carbon dioxide and transform it into biomass asper the photo synthesis principle. «The patent for the micro-alga system, like the one for green concrete which followed, open the way for other specialities than ours.» Real experimentation enables to unite competences. As a symbol, the first positive energy residential building, in Strasbourg, will operate entirely with renewable energies and will be covered with vegetation to bear the urban density. Other organic façade projects are presently running: the BIO3 tower in Paris La Défense and a ten story pilot building with an organic façade, on the CSTB site in Marne-la-Vallée.

Presented in the competition “Reinvent Paris”, creating first of all an architectural environment for more mixity and share, the In Vivo project wants to be a manifest for innovative living integration: the Tree House, equipped with large balconies planted with trees for each apartment, the Plant House dedicated to small agriculture in greenhouses or open air on the roofs, the AlgoHouse, with an organic façade of more than 900 sqm producing micro-alga and the Earthworm house, a construction where earthworms are breeded, for the earthworm composting of the inhabitants organic waste. Today, the office XTU employs about thirty persons. Their challenge and their partners one (laboratories and industries) is to continue to develop very innovative technologies to make the cities more sustainable. If the architects believe that they should never stop thinking about the future, by implementing daily this philosophy, it is because they see nowadays the natural resources running out and the possibility of creating an architecture based on natural elements.

(1) Intended for young architects, Europan is a competition for new ideas in architecture and city-planning, followed by realizations, one year out of two, simultaneously in about twenty European countries on a common subject.


1 Anouk Legendre and Nicolas Desmazières, © XTU Architects Photo Intramuros
2 Prehistory Museum, Jeongok, South Korea (2011), © XTU Architects Photo Renaud Dessade
3 The Terraces, Nanterre, France (2012), © XTU Architects Photo Luc Boegly
4&4b Flohara, Moroccan Pavilion, Venice Biennial 2014, © XTU Architects
5 Pavilion of France, Expo Milan 2015, © XTU Architects Photo Andrea Bosio
6 Wine City, Bordeaux (2016), © XTU Architects
6b Wine City, Bordeaux (2016), © XTU Architects Photo Julien Lanoo
7 Organic façade, © XTU Architects
8 Housing tower, Strasbourg, France, © XTU Architects
9&9b Project Vivo, Competition “Reinvent Paris “,© XTU Architects

Project of the month

Château des Carmes Haut Brion,
© Philippe Labeguerie

Château des Carmes Haut Brion, © Philippe Labeguerie

Château des Carmes Haut Brion, © Philippe Labeguerie

Bodega Valdemonjas, courtesy of Architizer

Bodega Valdemonjas, courtesy of Architizer

Bodega Valdemonjas, courtesy of Architizer

Château des Carmes Haut Brion, France
Architects: Philippe Starck, associated to Luc Arsène Henry

A new building dedicated to Wine Art, settled in the Bordeaux area, and shining like a metal blade half sunk in a pond, this wine cellar with plain lines can't leave any one indifferent.

The owner of the Château Carmes Haut-Brion is now happy to manage, high quality installations well integrated in the environment. Philippe Starck wanted to build a passive wine cellar. Thanks to the small local river, very close, it was constructed under water level and surrounded by earth. “Wine is so extraordinary, so magic that it doesn't need any architectural gesture, explains the designer. And for this reason, to respect its mystery, we had to be minimalist.” Covered with bronze color aluminium, the building has a total surface of 2.400 sqm on four levels. On the first immersed level, the wine cellar with 300 casks and the prestige cellar (we must point out the stakes sunk under earth to fix the concrete slabs). This setup enables a constant temperature of 15°C and a natural hygrometry of 85% whilst preserving the air quality as well as the energy autonomy. On the second level, a 200 sqm space is dedicated to receiving the grape harvest and communicates directly with the vats, of different shapes and alternatively in wood, stainless steel or concrete.The tasting room with some Starck designed furniture is set up on the higher level with a view on the fermenting room. Finally, right on the top, a 350 sqm panoramic teck terrace with a magnificent view on the whole estate.

Bodega Valdemonjas, Quintanilla de Arriba (Valladolid), Spain
Architects: Sylvia Paredes et Ana Agag

Architizer A + 2016 Prize, the building is perfectly integrated in the spectacular landscape and shows a commitment towards sustainability added to a strong brand image.

Trained in the Foster & Partners office, the two architects were chosen to design the new wine cellar of this vineyard with the Ribera de Duero designation. Straightaway, they wanted to send a strong and efficient impression. As a result, the compact and half buried building reinforces the image of a family owned wine estate having respect and passion for the terroir. The project aims to an energy balance and the water consumption – the estate is not connected to the electric nor water distribution system – is fully respecting the environment: sloping roofs to recuperate rainwater with integrated photovoltaic panels, passive solar control systems on the western façade, natural ventilation of spaces enabling to avoid air-conditioning. Orientated on an east-west axis, the building uses the inclination of the site so that the grape enters it by gravity. The cask brick vaulted hall is situated below earth to take advantage of the constant temperature and the strong humidity. The higher floor, of smaller size, wants to be the visiting card of Valdemonjas expressing clearly their values.

Product of the month


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Events in the spotlight




BAU - The future of building at BAU 2017

BAU, the World's Leading Trade Fair for Architecture, Materials and Systems, is the biggest and most important event in the construction industry. Everyone involved in the international community for planning, building and designing buildings comes together here—i.e. architects, planners, investors, representatives of the industrial and commercial sectors, the building trades, etc.

The next BAU takes place from January 16 to 21, 2017 at the Messe München exhibition center.

Around 2,000 exhibitors from more than 40 countries and approximately 250,000 visitors from all around the world are expected to take part.
On display at BAU on about 185,000 square meters of exhibition space—for years all the available space has been fully booked—are architectural solutions, materials and systems for commercial and residential construction and for interior fit-out, for both new-build and renovation and modernization.

BAU is also the world´s largest trade fair for architects and construction engineers, attracting more than 60,000 design professionals. It lets them experience the latest ideas, technologies and materials in actual practice. And the fair's first-rate supporting program features a wealth of new ideas.The many attractive events in the supporting program, including high-caliber forums with experts from all over the world, round off this industry showcase.

Archi-World® Academy 2015 - 2017 - III edition: registrations are closed

The projects have been transmitted to the 12 jury members, they will decide in the coming weeks who will be the lucky one to perform the traineeship in their practice. We are looking forward contacting the winners in November and meet them all at BAU on January 18th.

More information: bau-muenchen.

__________________________ __________________________________________________

Piscine Global November 15 - 18, 2016 - Eureexpo Lyon

You are an architect, designer or landscaper? Come to the dedicated specifier days on 17th and 18th, 2016



- Creating swimming pools with value added designs
- Integrating pools into the surroundings : is this a combination of skills or a dual skill?

An expert partner, Arch- Europe Group, 400 candidates and projects since 2012, 600 subscribers on LinkedIn, 15 journalists at the 3 Piscine Show network.

- STARTING AT 7.00PM, SHOWROOM ACADEMY AND POOL VISION TROPHY AWARDS CEREMONY and Cocktail party during the Show Late Night Opening.


Guided Tour of the Confluence dis- trict led by the Lyon Tourist Information Office.

How to register: On the website with code GMFPR


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Ecobuild 07 - 09, 2017 - Excel London

Inspiring, informing and connecting the entire built environment with solutions to build better communities.

Ecobuild is the UK's largest and number one event for specifiers across the built environment. No other UK event attracts 33,319 high calibre, senior level decision makers and influencers from architects and developers to local government and major infrastructure clients.

In 2017, the event will return on 07-09 March, with a renewed focus on enabling sustainable construction for 2017 and beyond. With Lead Partner the UK-GBC, Ecobuild 2017 will explore sustainability as a driver to innovation and growth, a catalyst for regeneration and as a way for organisations to do better business.

This year the event theme is Regeneration. Ecobuild 2017 will be regenerated into an immersive city - complete with main street, distinct destinations and special feature attractions. Central to the experience will be Regeneration Drive, a boulevard running through the middle of Ecobuild, linking different aspects of the exhibition and enabling you to experience the very best examples of innovation and creativity from across the built environment.

In the lead up to the event, Ecobuild will be driving industry-wide conversation around the ongoing evolution of sustainability. Industry professionals can get involved in the conversation on social media using #SustainabilityIs

Or interested in joining over 33,000 industry professionals? Ecobuild 2017 is free to attend! Get your free ticket by clicking here.

More information: Ecobuild


Alexander Girard. A Designer’s Universe
(> 29/01/2017) - Weil am Rhein Vitra Design Museum (DE)
SPACE IN MOTION: A Century of Estonian Architecture
(> 31/12/2017) Tallinn Museum of Estonian Architecture
Wim Delvoye
(2/07/2016 – 8/01/2017) - Luxembourg MUDAM (LU)
Stay. Now. Then: Housing and answers for 99 years
(16/04 - 31/12/2016) - Stockholm ArkDes (SE)
Lionel Jadot
(18/09 - 4/12/2016) – Hornu CID (B)
>> read more

eVolo 2017 Skyscraper Competition
Deadline: 07/02/2017

Genoa Blueprint Competition
Deadline: 15/12/2016

Deadline: 01/02/2017

>> read more
books books books
Container and Modular Buildings
Cornelia Dörries / Sarah Zahradnik

DOM publishers
€ 38.00
252 pages
ISBN 978-3-86922-515-9 (English)
ISBN 978-3-86922-512-8 (German)
>> Read more

Shigeru Ban. Updated version
Philip Jodidio

€ 39.99
568 pages
ISBN 978-3-8365-3236-5 (Spanish, Italian, Portuguese)
ISBN 978-3-8365-3220-4 (German, English, French)
>> Read more

Vital Architecture
Tools for Durability
Ruurd Roorda, Bas Kegge

nai01 Publishers
€ 29.95
176 pages
Dutch / English
ISBN 978-94-6208-283-0
>> Read more

© 2016 Archi-Europe
Responsible Editor: Jacques Allard
Chief Editor: Marie-Claire Regniers

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