Visitors of the newly opened La Cité du Vin in Bordeaux, France, can explore the global history and tradition of wine production. The curvy building designed by XTU Architects references the liquid nature of wine and the traditional stone facades typical of the Bordeaux region, resulting in an eye-catching design that mirrors its contents.
The shape of La Cité du Vin references wine in a variety of ways; it could be interpreted to mimic gnarled vine stock or wine swirling in a glass. Its round volumes are clad in silk-screen printed glass panels and perforated, lacquered aluminum panels that change appearance depending on the time of day.
Two entrances on opposite sides of the building facilitate and accentuate movement and flow, leading visitors to the highest point of the structure-an observation tower offering expansive views of the city. The ground floor features numerous mirrored surfaces that encourage visitors to move up towards the light, just like a vine plant grows upwards towards the sun. Wooden structural elements visible in the interior are reminiscient of boats, wine, and its travels.
Photos by XTU Architects