Rioja pioneer Marqués de Riscal will open its long-anticipated City of Wine cultural centre on 1 September.
Located at the company’s main bodega in the tiny Rioja village of Elciego, the 60ha complex, devoted entirely to wine, is part of a 10-year, US$77m renovation of the winery and its facilities.
It features a 43-room luxury hotel by architect Frank O Gehry, who designed the roof of wave-shaped titanium sheets in homage to the flowing skirts of Flamenco dancers.
Visitors to the hotel, set amid Riscal’s vineyards, will be able to descend by glass elevator to cellar level, where they can participate in tours and tastings that take them through the winemaking process from production to ageing.
The restaurant, run by Michelin-starred chef Francis Paniego (of Restaurante Echaurren, also in Rioja) will also offer cooking and wine-and-food pairing classes.
Best known for its Reserva and Gran Reserva Riojas, the 150-year old Marqués de Riscal also produces wine in La Rueda and Castilla y León.
Written by Maggie Rosen