Bordered to the west by the Atlantic Ocean, Bordeaux, the capital of Southwest France was added to the UNESCO World Heritage list in 2007, as the largest urban area ever to receive this acclaim.
The heart of the historical sector of the city offers stunning beauty and unity of architectural style, with charming squares and parks, absorbing museums, and highly cultivated and bustling places of entertainment.
Bordeaux is the capital city of the Gironde Department that includes 180 kilometers of beaches, thousands of hectares of woodland to roam, hundreds of kilometers of paths to walk along and beautiful spots to discover: the Gironde estuary and the Cordouan lighthouse in the Medoc area (www.pauillac-medoc.com), the colorful seaside resorts along the ocean (www.medococean.com), the Basin d’Arcachon and Cape Ferret, centers for oyster farming and natural home for birds (www.arcachon.com ), Blaye, on the right bank of the Gironde estuary (www.tourisme-blaye.com), on the Unesco World heritage list since 2008, Saint Emilion, an enchanting mediaeval town perched on a hillside, overlooking its reputed vineyards, is also listed in the Unesco World Heritage (www.saint-emilion-tourisme.com )
Gastronomy and Shopping
The city of Bordeaux has an excellent gastronomic tradition and is a focal point of fine dining and shopping with fine cuisine in top class restaurants and friendly bistros at every turn inviting visitors to linger.
High-fashion boutiques are situated in pedestrian streets featuring many famous international and well-known French brands.
And of course, Bordeaux is also the gateway to the most famous vineyards in the world with many exceptional treasures to discover. The Bordeaux vineyards cover 115,100 hectares. Annual production is around 6.5 million hectoliters, or over 860 million bottles, of which 89% is red and 11% is white (dry: 8% and sweet: 3%). With 55 "Appellations d’Origine Contrôlées" (Designations of Origin) and some 8,000 Châteaux, the Gironde is largely covered with vineyards. About 70% of Bordeaux wine is sold on the French market; the rest is exported.
Although wines may exist in varied colors (white, red, rosé and clairet) and types (still and sparkling, dry and sweet, powerfully tannic and elegantly smooth), all wines produced in the Bordeaux region share a common style. More than a particular taste, there is a certain character that is expressed through a balance of concentration and strength with finesse and elegance.
The style is the result of natural factors such as terroir and climate, as well as human intervention through assemblage and the pairing of grapes varieties to terroir.
Bordeaux is the native home of grapes renowned the world over, most notably Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Sauvignon Blanc. Red wines in Bordeaux are blends of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and/or Cabernet Franc, and white wines are Sauvignon Blanc and of Sémillon.
For additional information about Bordeaux wines, go on www.bordeaux.com
Discover the wineries that have been awarded a Best Of Wine Tourism by Great Wine Capitals by clicking here: Best Of Wine Tourism winners in Bordeaux
And for information in French, visit the Best Of French site there: Best Of Bordeaux
Major urban projects are developing in Bordeaux, pulling investment opportunities to the region. For instance, the tramway is the backbone of Bordeaux’s efficient modern urban transport network. The new high-speed train (TGV) will be open in 2016 connecting Bordeaux to Paris in 2h00 and Madrid/Spain in 3h30, but there are many other business sectors that are developing in the area: agribusiness, Aeronautics and electronics, Aerospace, Communication technologies, health sector, Bio technologies, .... And Bordeaux has been labeled “French Tech City" for its aptitude in developing innovative technologies (http://en.lafrenchtech.com )
Wine Education in Bordeaux
4 Universities with many links with foreign ones, several business schools, among which KEDGE Business School with a very interesting curriculum, a dedicated research team and large academic network in wine business, wine marketing and wine tourism classes (MBA, Masters, …): http://www.kedgebs.com/en
Continuing education courses are also available by the Wine & Spirit IPC, Institute for Commercial Promotion http://formations.bordeaux.cci.fr/ipc-vins-et-spiritueux
Consumer classes are provide by the Bordeaux Wine School which offers a large variety of classes that give a foundation, which enables the consumers to find their way around the vast universe of Bordeaux wines. http://www.bordeaux.com/en/wineschool