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Bordeaux must open its doors to visitors

The future of Bordeaux depends on opening its doors and losing its reputation for being dismissive of visitors, CIVB head Christian Delpeuch said at the Great Wine Capitals Awards last week.

The Awards were launched last year to promote wine tourism between the member cities of Bilbao (Rioja), Bordeaux, Cape Town, Florence, Melbourne, Porto, Santiago (Chile) and San Francisco.

Chateau Pape Clément and Chateau Cos d’Estournel were among the Bordeaux winners announced on 30 September. The two properties join winners from the other Great Wine Capitals member countries in Melbourne next month for the grand finals of the awards.

Other winners were Chateau Pichon Lalande in the Arts and Culture category, Chateau Giscours for Business Tourism, and Cos d’Estournel in the Architecture category.

The Prix Spécial was awarded to Planète Bordeaux, a permanent exhibition explaining how Bordeaux and Bordeaux Supérieur are made, with special reference to the grapes, the vines, the terroir and the work of the growers.

Delpeuch, president of the CIVB and managing director of winning entrant Ginestet, congratulated the winners on understanding that Bordeaux needs to move away from its reputation for being dismissive of visitors.

‘The future of Bordeaux lies in promoting our heritage, in encouraging people back to the wines through sustained tourism, capitalising on the beauty of the region and explaining our understanding of what makes great wines. Each winning chateaux has demonstrated exceptional capability to cater for, and welcome, visitors and tourists,’ he said.

The only Bordeaux chateaux to go on to become an international winner at the 2003 finals, held in Bilbao, was Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte in the Architecture category.

Full list of winners:

Parks and Gardens – Château Pape Clément, Pessac-Leognan

Architecture – Château Cos d’Estournel, Saint Estèphe

Leisure – Château Lanessan, Cussac Fort Medoc

Education Tourism – Ginestet

Business Tourism – Château Giscours, Margaux

Arts and Culture – Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande, Pauillac

Accommodation – Château de Carbonneau, Pessac-sur-Dordogne

Innovation – Millésima École du Vin

Written by Jane Anson in Bordeaux

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