Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.
Marqués de Riscal – a Luxury Collection hotel in Rioja Alavesa region, Spain by Frank O. Gehry
July 2nd, 2011 by Sumit Singhal
Wine-growing tradition and avant-garde art: luxury, vineyards and relaxation in a Luxury Collection Hotel, designed by Frank O. Gehry
Designed and built by Frank O. Gehry, one of the world’s most renowned architects and author of works of art like the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, The Marqués de Riscal Hotel merges deep rooted wine-growing tradition with twenty-first century avant-garde design.
Nestled in the renowned Vinos de los Herederos del Marques de Riscal’s vineyard in the medieval village of Elciego, the hotel’s spectacular curves, titanium roof and asymmetry of walls provide an elegant contrast to the historic wine cellars designed in 1858 by the architect Ricardo Bellsola. The hotel’s 43 luxury rooms and suites, each unique and different in their shapes and offered views, are “thrown” in two wings connected by a spectacular suspended footbridge.
Gehry’s personal and exclusive project of interior design characterized by its forms, colors and materials, offers an authentic avant-garde vision. The leather and raw maple wood of the suites the dark marble of the bathrooms, and furniture by Gehry (such as the Cloud lamps) and by other famous architects like Alvar Aalto melt harmoniously with the most advanced technology. State-of-the art “Beovision” televisions by Bang & Olufsen, VOIP telephones and WIFI internet access in all areas of the hotel combine perfectly with avant-garde furniture, lamps and headboards, designed exclusively for the Marques de Riscal Hotel and the quality and comfort of The Luxury Collection beds and linens.
The world of wine and the world of gastronomy meet at The Marques de Riscal Hotel. With the most exclusive crockery at their finger tips, guests can enjoy the creative and traditional Basque-Riojan cuisine of Francis Paniego, who in 2004 was the first Riojan chef to receive a Michelin star. The hotel also offers a more informal Wine Bar and a rooftop lounge with breath taking panoramic views. Its cozy fire-place will be perfect for guests who want to sample the thousands of wines from around the world found in the hotel’s cellars or enjoy the reading of one of the 1000 books of the library, all of them with topics related to the luxury world. Guests can also experience the entire process of wine production, from the most traditional to the newest and technologically most advanced processes.
Guests are invited to indulge in the wine therapies of The Caudalie Vinothérapie® Spa Marqués de Riscal, recognized in 2006 by the Condé Nast Traveller as the Best European Spa, 2007 with Wallpaper’s Best Design Award and Best Treatment Gala Spa Award and finally in 2008 included in Spain’s Hot Condé Nast Hot List. The spa offers a broad selection of relaxing, energizing, slimming and anti-aging treatments and sensations based on the grape’s and vine’s purest essences and other natural ingredients such as brown sugar, honey and oils.
The Marques de Riscal Hotel also offers modern meeting, conference, events and banquet services. There is a modern auditorium with capacity for 100 people and several multifunctional spaces for informal meetings, cocktails or social events. 1,200 sq. meters of the estate’s cellars were converted into a large banquet venue with a maximum seating capacity of 500 people and the possibility of dividing the space into different sections.
As with all Luxury Collection hotels around the world, The Marques de Riscal concierge will provide guests with the most enriching experiences to savor the beauty, culture and gastronomical richness of the area, whether by bicycle, on horseback or by hot-air balloon. There are over 55 Luxury Collection hotels and resorts around the world, including the Maria Cristina (San Sebastian) and Alfonso XIII (Sevilla) in Spain, Hotel Danieli in Venice, The Imperial in Vienna, the Hotel Grand Bretagne in Athens and The Phonenician in Arizona. Each is unique, providing the discerning global traveler with an experience that is authentic to the destination, and that is what will be found at The Marqués de Riscal Hotel.
About the Principals:
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with 1000 properties in nearly 100 countries and territories with 145,000 employees at its owned and managed properties. Starwood Hotels is a fully integrated owner, operator and franchisor of hotels, resorts and residences with the following internationally renowned brands: St. Regis®, The Luxury Collection®, W®, Westin®, Le Méridien®, Sheraton®, Four Points® by Sheraton, and the recently launched Aloft®, and Element SM. Starwood Hotels also owns Starwood Vacation Ownership, Inc., one of the premier developers and operators of high quality vacation interval ownership resorts. For more information, please visit www.starwoodhotels.com.
About The Luxury Collection Hotels & Resorts:
The Luxury Collection® is a selection of hotels and resorts offering unique, authentic experiences that evoke lasting, treasured memories. For the global explorer, The Luxury Collection offers a gateway to the world’s most exciting and desirable destinations. Each hotel and resort is a unique and cherished expression of its location; a portal to the destination’s indigenous charms and treasures. Magnificent décor, spectacular settings, impeccable service and the latest modern conveniences combine to provide a uniquely enriching experience.
Today, The Luxury Collection is a glittering ensemble of more than 65 of the world’s finest hotels and resorts in more than 26 countries in bustling cities and spectacular destinations around the world. The Luxury Collection includes award-winning hotels that continuously exceed guest expectations by offering unparalleled service, style and class in some of the most desired destinations in the world. Most recently, Mystique, a Luxury Collection Resort, was honored with the 2008 Travel + Leisure Design Award for Best Small Resort in the world. All of these hotels, many of them centuries old, are internationally recognized as being among the world’s finest. For more information, please visit www.luxurycollection.com.
About Wines from Herederos de Marques de Riscal:
Wines from Herederos de Marques de Riscal always have been a pioneer in its field. In 1858 it became the first winery in Rioja region that produced wine using according to the Bordeaux system. In 1972 Marques de Riscal was the first winery to promote the D.O. where the famous Marques de Riscal white wines are made. It was also the first winery to create a wine of a new age: Barón de Chirel. Marques de Riscal products can be found in more than 70 countries and its wines have earned some of the most distinguished international awards and acclaim as well as media recognition from professionals.
About Spa Vinothérapie® Caudalíe Marques de Riscal:
CAUDALIE, the French cosmetic niche brand was created in 1995 by Mathilde and Bertrand Thomas in collaboration with Dr. Vercauteren from the University of Bordeaux and President of World Polyphenol Group. In 1999, CAUDALIE offered its products a beautiful showcase creating the first Vinothérapie® Spa in the world, in the middle of Château Smith Haut Lafitte, Bordeaux, France.
Now, three others centres offers this exquisites services: the Marques de Riscal Hotel in Elciego since 2006, Les Etangs De Corot Hotel in Ville d´Arvay opened in 2008 and the Plaza Hotel in New York also since 2008.
Implemented today in 28 countries all over the world, Caudalie sells millions of products of its more than 40 references, which efficiency (scientifically proven) is due to patented molecules from the grape-seed Polyphenol that are, 10,000 times more powerful than Vitamin E in fighting free radicals; the Resveratrol that stimulates cell renewal by 25 % and Viniferine, the most powerful anti dark spot on the market.
Spa Vinothérapie® Caudalíe Marques de Riscal have especifics and uniques treatments in the world, as honey and wine wrap, exhilarating massage or the Crushed Cabernet Scrub. All them characterized for indulged the senses, soothed the bodies and regenerated the soul.
Contact Frank O. Gehry