Herzog & de Meuron
Project
2016–
Realization
2019–2023

The BĂ©lair-Monange winery in Saint-Émilion is designed to meet the future needs of the estate’s winegrowing operation. The program integrates sustainably into the town of Saint-Émilion, listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO since 1999; the project is both a place of production and promotion. The four main areas dedicated to the wine-making process are the harvest receiving area, the vat room and the barrel cellars. For the reception of private clients, the project includes a tasting room as well as a reception room that can accommodate approximately 100 people.

The project is a direct commission which continues a long-standing relationship, initiated some twenty years ago, between the Moueix family and Herzog & de Meuron. BĂ©lair-Monange is the fifth joint project and the second winery, after the Dominus Winery in Napa Valley, California, that we have worked on together.

History

The countryside of Saint-Émilion is a historic wine and cultural territory preserved in a state close to that of the mid-14th century. Saint-Émilion, a medieval town that contains numerous churches, chapels and monasteries dating back to the 11th century. This long history is also associated with the development of wine making in the region, first introduced by the Romans. The characteristics of the monuments, the architecture and the landscape, the combination of the built and the unbuilt, the land itself, the vineyards and the parks are woven into a unique cultural and urban tapestry.

Character of the site

The site is located on the clay-limestone plateau of the “Croix Gaudin” about one kilometer southwest of the historic center of Saint-Émilion. The plateau is defined by the Mediterranean rim and the surrounding area of hillsides, ridges and valleys. This marked relief offers a panoramic view of the valley of the Dordogne. The existing context is composed of three characteristic elements: the omnipresence of the vineyards, the neighboring Magdelaine park, and an existing stone house, built in 1845, which is preserved in the framework of the project.

Landscape, Heritage, and Architecture

The adjacent Magdelaine park is characterized by a similar materiality and vegetation as the site, containing a number of holm oaks, lime trees and sycamore maples. This park, experienced as an island of coolness and refreshment in a larger landscape of few trees, is the opening of a sequence of architectural spaces that defines the monolithic ensemble of the BĂ©lair-Monange winery.

The sculptural character of the existing stone house is reinforced by blocking most of its openings, with infill slightly recessed from the exterior of the façade. This allows a shadow line to be cast over the old openings so as not to completely erase their traces, like a palimpsest of a past era. Three new windows are carefully positioned on the main façade to the east to meet the needs of the new interior configuration and program of the existing house.

The new cellars, slightly buried so as not to impose themselves on the existing house, are revealed as a concrete monolith. Chosen for its thermal qualities, concrete allows for a stable and temperate indoor environment throughout the year – an important quality for spaces dedicated to the wine making process. The link between the two mineral monoliths, one in stone and one in concrete, is strengthened by the concrete roof of the reception room. This new roof extends the existing roof of the south wing of the house above the cellars, in the direction of the vineyards and the Dordogne valley. The ochre hue and lightly textured surface of the concrete elements reinforces the intimate relationship between the two entities. The new winery building adapts to the presence of the old house, establishing a dialogue with it rather than overwhelming it.

On the façade, horizontal and vertical slits subdivide the large volume of the new building and bring natural light into the main winery. The large wooden doors on the south facade, similar to freestanding furniture elements, recall elements of medieval vernacular and allow the workspaces to open to the outside during the harvest period. The concrete beams of the roof are a reminder of the Roman furrows, an ancestral technique of the culture of the vine of which certain traces are still present in Saint-Émilion. Some of these beams have been partially hollowed out to allow for natural air ventilation and free-cooling of the work spaces in summer.

The BĂ©lair-Monange winery is composed of four symmetrical quadrants located along a central alley, which is both the main circulation of the project and a tribute to the underground architecture of Saint-Émilion as seen in the quarries and monolithic church. The walls and ceiling of this rough textured concrete walkway express the motif inspired by an engraving by Albrecht DĂŒrer from 1504, “Joachim and the Angel”, which is also represented on the labels of the first wine produced here, “ChĂąteau BĂ©lair-Monange”. A large staircase carved into the volume unifies the four key work spaces – the vat room, the reception and harvest area and the two barrel cellars. The reception room on the top level is entirely open to the landscape and the Dordogne valley.

Engagement with the terroir

Learning about and experiencing viniculture directly on-site contributes to the cultural development of the entire region. The BĂ©lair-Monange winery was designed not only to meet the functional needs of the client’s staff, but also to welcome visitors from around the world. The project revolves around creating a wine that expresses the true potential of the vineyard, with the new winery reflecting the minerality of the local soil and the wine that will be produced within these walls in the years to come.

Le nouveau chai « BĂ©lair-Monange » Ă  Saint-Émilion est dimensionnĂ© pour rĂ©pondre aux futurs besoins de l’exploitation viticole de la propriĂ©tĂ©. Le programme du chai, ambitieux et exigeant, s’intĂšgre durablement et harmonieusement dans la commune de Saint-Émilion, inscrite au patrimoine mondial de l’humanitĂ© par l’UNESCO depuis 1999. Le chai est Ă  la fois un lieu de production et de promotion d’un des meilleurs vins français. Les quatre espaces principaux dĂ©diĂ©s au travail vinicole sont la rĂ©ception vendange, le cuvier et les chais Ă  barriques. Pour l’accueil de clients privĂ©s, le projet comprend une salle de dĂ©gustation ainsi qu’une salle de rĂ©ception pouvant accueillir une centaine de personnes.

Le projet est une commande directe s’inscrivant dans la continuitĂ© de la relation constructive historique, initiĂ©e il y a une vingtaine d’annĂ©es, entre la famille Moueix et Herzog & de Meuron. Le futur chai « BĂ©lair- Monange » sera la cinquiĂšme rĂ©alisation commune et le second chai aprĂšs la Dominus Winery Ă  Napa Valley en Californie.

Histoire

Le paysage de Saint-Émilion est un paysage viticole et culturel historique conservĂ© dans un Ă©tat proche de celui du milieu du XIXĂšme siĂšcle. Saint-Émilion – de par son histoire dans l’AntiquitĂ© Romaine puis Ă  son grand dĂ©veloppement au Moyen-Age – compte de nombreuses Ă©glises, chapelles et monastĂšres du XIĂšme siĂšcle. Cette longue histoire est Ă©galement associĂ©e au dĂ©veloppement de la viticulture introduite dans cette rĂ©gion fertile par les Romains. Les caractĂ©ristiques des monuments, de l’architecture et des paysages, l’alliance du bĂąti et du non bĂąti, des pierres, des vignes et des parcs se tissent dans une tapisserie culturelle et urbaine unique.

CaractĂšre du site

Le site dĂ©diĂ© au projet se trouve sur le plateau argilo-calcaire de la « Croix Gaudin » Ă  environ un kilomĂštre au Sud-Ouest du centre historique de Saint-Émilion. Les abords du plateau sont dĂ©finis par la ceinture mĂ©diterranĂ©enne et la zone des coteaux, crĂȘtes et combes. Ce relief trĂšs marquĂ© offre une vue panoramique imprenable et unique sur la vallĂ©e de la Dordogne. Le contexte existant est composĂ© de trois Ă©lĂ©ments caractĂ©ristiques : l’omniprĂ©sence des vignes, le parc de la Magdelaine, voisin Ă  notre site, et une maison en pierre, construite en 1845, qui doit ĂȘtre conservĂ©e dans le cadre du projet futur.

Paysage, Patrimoine et Architecture

Le parc existant de la Magdelaine est prolongĂ© depuis l’autre cĂŽtĂ© de la route vers notre parcelle avec une matĂ©rialitĂ© et une palette vĂ©gĂ©tale similaire, notamment des chĂȘnes verts, tilleuls et Ă©rables sycomores.

Ce parc, vĂ©ritable ilot de fraicheur dans un paysage Saint-Émilionnais peu arborĂ©, est l’ouverture d’une sĂ©quence d’espaces architecturaux qui dĂ©finit l’ensemble monolithique du nouveau chai « BĂ©lair- Monange ».

Le caractĂšre sculptural de la maison existante en pierre est renforcĂ© en bouchant la majoritĂ© de ses baies, lĂ©gĂšrement en retrait du nu extĂ©rieur de la façade. Cette disposition permet de crĂ©er une lĂ©gĂšre ombre au droit des anciennes ouvertures afin de ne pas complĂštement effacer leurs traces, tel un palimpseste d’une Ă©poque passĂ©e. Trois nouvelles fenĂȘtres sont judicieusement positionnĂ©es sur la façade principale Ă  l’Est pour rĂ©pondre aux besoins du programme et Ă  la configuration intĂ©rieure remaniĂ©e de la maison existante.

Les nouveaux chais, lĂ©gĂšrement enterrĂ©s pour ne pas s’imposer Ă  la maison existante, se rĂ©vĂšlent comme un monolithe en bĂ©ton. Choisi pour ses qualitĂ©s thermiques, le bĂ©ton permet de maintenir une tempĂ©rature stable et tempĂ©rĂ©e, tout au long de l’annĂ©e, Ă  l’intĂ©rieur des espaces dĂ©diĂ©s Ă  la vinification. Le lien entre les deux monolithes minĂ©raux, celui en pierre et celui en bĂ©ton, est assurĂ© par la nouvelle toiture en bĂ©ton de la salle de rĂ©ception qui prolonge celle de l’aile Sud de la maison au-dessus des chais, en direction des vignes et de la vallĂ©e de la Dordogne. La surface extĂ©rieure des Ă©lĂ©ments en bĂ©ton, avec sa teinte ocre- jaune et sa lĂ©gĂšre texture, renforce la relation intime entre les deux entitĂ©s. Le bĂątiment des chais s’adapte Ă  la prĂ©sence de l’ancienne maison en Ă©tablissant avec elle un dialogue subtil et non un rapport de force.

En façade des chais, les fentes horizontales et verticales subdivisent le large volume du nouveau bĂątiment et apportent de la lumiĂšre naturelle Ă  l’intĂ©rieur du chai principal. Les grandes portes en bois en façade Sud, semblables Ă  des Ă©lĂ©ments de mobilier indĂ©pendants, rappellent l’époque mĂ©diĂ©vale et permettent aux espaces de travail de s’ouvrir largement sur l’extĂ©rieur pendant la pĂ©riode de vendanges. Les poutres en bĂ©ton de la toiture sont un rappel aux sillons Romains, technique ancestrale de la culture de la vigne dont certaines traces sont encore prĂ©sentes Ă  Saint-Émilion. Certaines de ces poutres ont Ă©tĂ© partiellement Ă©vidĂ©es pour permettre une ventilation d’air naturelle et un rafraichissement (free-cooling) des espaces de travail en Ă©tĂ©.

Le chai BĂ©lair-Monange se compose de quatre quadrants symĂ©triques implantĂ©s le long d’une allĂ©e centrale, Ă  la fois circulation principale du projet mais surtout hommage Ă  l’architecture souterraine de Saint-Émilion (carriĂšres, Église monolithique). Cette allĂ©e en bĂ©ton brut texturĂ©, exprime sur ses parois et son plafond le motif inspirĂ© d’une gravure d’Albrecht DĂŒrer de 1504 « Joachim et l’Ange », Ă©galement reprĂ©sentĂ©e sur les Ă©tiquettes du premier vin « ChĂąteau BĂ©lair-Monange ». Un grand escalier creusĂ© dans le volume unifie les quatre espaces clĂ©s de travail – le cuvier, la rĂ©ception-vendange et les deux chais Ă  barriques. La salle de rĂ©ception situĂ©e au dernier niveau est entiĂšrement ouverte sur le paysage et la vallĂ©e de la Dordogne.

Engagement avec le terroir

Apprendre et dĂ©couvrir la production de la viticulture sur place contribue au dĂ©veloppement culturel de la rĂ©gion. Le chai BĂ©lair-Monange a Ă©tĂ© conçu pour rĂ©pondre non seulement aux besoins fonctionnels du personnel et aux Ă©vĂ©nements privĂ©s du client, mais aussi pour accueillir des visiteurs du monde entier. Le projet s’articule autour de la crĂ©ation d’un vin exprimant le vĂ©ritable potentiel du vignoble, le nouveau chai reflĂ©tant la minĂ©ralitĂ© du site et le futur vin qui sera produit dans ses murs.

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476_CP_2305_IB_2743
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476_CP_2305_IB_1569_small
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476_CP_2305_IB_2261

Process

The project references the mineral architecture — the quarries and monolithic stone churches — of Saint-Émilion.

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476_SI_1612_489_1
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476_CP_2305_HdM_001_PRI

The Parc de la Magdelaine is extended from the other side of the road towards our site using a palette of similar materials and vegetation. The project transforms an existing stone house whose sculptural qualities are revealed through the selective blocking of openings. An adjacent monolith, made of concrete rather than stone, is tied back to the house through the reception hall’s roof, which extends towards the vineyards and the Dordogne valley.

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476_CI_1808_012_Model-1_100_White-1500×1002

Façade mockups to test the exterior surface of the concrete: with its ochre-yellow tint and light texturing, the concrete places the new addition in a subtle dialogue with the materiality of the existing house.

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476_SI_180619_Site_Mockup_079
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476_REP_2207_001_SummerParty2022_A0portrait
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476_CI_1911_DT09_Conference-Drone-FrontFacade5

The textured concrete panels of the passageway are made through a process of CNC milling and casting. They make reference to an etching by Albrecht DĂŒrer from 1504, entitled ‘Joachim and the Angel’. This motive is also represented on the labels of the wine ‘ChĂąteaux Belair Monange’.

Image for object 93 R 1766 from StÀdtisches Graphik-Kabinett Backnang
Image for object 93 R 1766 from StÀdtisches Graphik-Kabinett Backnang
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476_CO_2001_Reckli_0019
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476_CO_2006_033_200603
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476_SI_190228_122-1500×1125
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476_CO_2203_109

Drawings

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476_DR_230531_476_ST_2305_002_ENG_Plans_GraphicSet_SS_500_final
476_DR_230531_476_ST_2305_002_ENG_Plans_GraphicSet_SS_500_final
476_DR_230531_476_ST_2305_003_ENG_Plans_GraphicSet_GF_500_final
476_DR_230531_476_ST_2305_003_ENG_Plans_GraphicSet_GF_500_final
476_DR_230531_476_ST_2305_004_ENG_Plans_GraphicSet_N1_500_final
476_DR_230531_476_ST_2305_004_ENG_Plans_GraphicSet_N1_500_final
476_DR_230531_476_ST_2305_005_ENG_Plans_GraphicSet_N2_500_final
476_DR_230531_476_ST_2305_005_ENG_Plans_GraphicSet_N2_500_final
476_DR_230531_476_ST_2305_006_ENG_Sections_GraphicSet_S1_500_final
476_DR_230531_476_ST_2305_006_ENG_Sections_GraphicSet_S1_500_final
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476_DR_230531_476_ST_2305_006_ENG_Sections_GraphicSet_S2_500_final

Team

Facts

Client
Private
Planning
Executive Architect : NADAU ARCHITECTURE, Bordeaux, France
Specialist / Consulting
Fluides (CVC, Electricité): INGEROP, Mérignac, France
Structure: BATISERF, Fontaine, France
Economiste: OVERDRIVE, Bordeaux, France
Voirie et RĂ©seaux Divers (VRD): VIA INFRASTRUCTURE, Bordeaux, France
Acoustique: EMACOUSTIQUE, Bordeaux, France
Bureau de contrĂŽle et SPS: QUALICONSULT, Pessac, France
Contractors
General Contractor : GTM BÂTIMENT AQUITAINE, Bordeaux, France
Building Data
Site Area: 109'791 sqft, 10'200 sqm
Gross floor area (GFA): 49'406 sqft, 4'590 sqm
GFA above ground: 44'562 sqft, 4'140 sqm
GFA below ground: 4'843 sqft, 450 sqm
Number of levels: 3
Footprint: 28'675 sqft, 2'664 sqm
Length: 242 ft, 74 m
Width: 118 ft, 36 m
Height: 19 ft, 6 m
Gross volume (GV): 585'517 cbft, 16'580 cbm
Facade surface: 15'069 sqft, 1'400 sqm