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The Sheraton in Mendoza is much easier to spot in the air than it is on the ground. As you fly into Mendoza, the wine capital of Argentina, you’ll see a flat expanse of green vineyard land and matchbox houses in the main capital and suburbs. There are few high-rise buildings in this seismic region, but the Sheraton’s 17 floor hotel is one of them.

Welcome to Hotel California – you can check out any time you want, but you can never leave.

Well – you can leave, but you would never want to.

Since visiting Hotel California Road I have had that Eagles’ song stuck in my head. But, apart from the name, there is no connection to be made between the slightly dark and broody lyrics in Hotel California and the beautiful luxury micro hotel ran by Dudley and Irina from Inkwell Wines. Well that, and the fact that I would just like to live here and… never leave.

In my opinion you will never get enough of the gently rolling hills of McLaren Vale, but if you are looking to offer your eyes a bit more excitement the winner for the Best of International Wine Tourism has got you covered! The d’Arenberg Cube will have you lapping up the big picture, while needing time to soak up all the amazing details, too.

Actually, the d’Arenberg Cube is a 2018 winner in two categories: International Best Wine Tourism, and – of course – Architecture and Landscape. Although the Cube is a new and unexpected addition for the region since last year, it is not an unexpected winner in these categories. A building made entirely out of glass, shaped like a Rubik’s cube, which surprisingly enough seems to really fit in the Mourvèdre vineyard surrounding it – that is a feat we all need to take a closer look at.

Westhofen in the southern part of Rheinhessen has long been known for great wines and fabulous food, yet now it has acquired another temple of good living. "Gut Leben am Morstein" is the name and the mission of the beautiful Victorian villa that rises above the village of Westhofen, right at its entrance. "Our little castle", Stefan Spies calls it, and yet, the stately building is only a small part of the project: The "Good Living" contains a gourmet restaurant, a hotel with conference rooms in the old barn – and a huge, ancient vault in which famous actors, chamber music and comedians take stage.

For a long time, we wanted to visit Vila Nova de Gaia, in a unique opportunity to take a beautiful walk, learn History, have a gastronomic and wine experience, and enjoy a top-class accommodation

Les Celliers de Sion offers a host of different activities to meet your every requirement. Whether you have thirty minutes, two hours or a whole day, whether you’re new to the world of wine or a true connoisseur, Les Celliers de Sion has everything you need to keep your inner wine tourist happy! The centre and the Bisse de Clavau trail are accessible at all times, and there is also a programme of guided tours available during fixed time slots or by reservation.

On a quick glance Casa Vigil appears as a boutique winery and restaurant. Each of which certainly has its merits. However what makes Casa Vigil special in Mendoza, and the reason it went on to become the International Winner of Best of Wine Tourism Awards this year, is because at the heart of Casa Vigil is a community - of winemakers, artists, chefs and local families.

Château Smith Haut Lafitte is no stranger to contemporary art; the owner, Florence Cathiard, shares her eclectic collection with visitors as they wander through the vines and the château - one of the leaders of wine tourism in Bordeaux. She has been systematically adding a piece a year to her collection over the last twenty-six years since they purchased this classified growth of the Graves.

The Rioja Wine Train takes wine lovers on a fascinating trip to the Haro Train Station District, home of seven wineries, five of which were founded in the 19th century.  During the daylong experience a theater company and the wineries themselves entertain and educate the travelers about the importance of the railroad to the international expansion of Rioja wines. 

The Great Wine Capitals Global Network recognized this initiative by bestowing on The Rioja Wine Train a 2019 regional award from Bilbao-Rioja as well as an international ‘Best Of Wine Tourism’ award.

Etude is the San Francisco | Napa Valley global winner for the 2018 Best of Wine Tourism Awards. They farm and operate with the goal of sustaining a healthy environment and eco-system, so they may be responsible neighbors and community members.

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