Have you ever read a wine label, noted its far-flung origins and been seized by wanderlust? Then you might want to consider visiting a vineyard resort. Fortunately, there are an increasing number of them from which to choose.
This is something that we highlighted in our most recent travel blog article for From the Grapevine. We wandered off the beaten track and into a host of fantastic vineyard resorts that combine lip-smacking wine with spectacular destinations. Among the lesser-known wine hotspots were a New York vineyard with a delicious range of pinot blancs and a chateau in Galilee with a wine list boasting the best in regional vintages. We also looked at vineyard resorts in better-known wine regions, such as a hotel in Mendoza, Argentina with beautiful wine-themed rooms, a complementary tasting and its own personal vineyard. And then, of course, we couldn’t miss the luxurious lodge in Matakana, New Zealand, which offers a wonderful vineyard along with majestic views across the mighty Pacific.
If our summary of the blog has tickled your oenophilic tastebuds, then simply scroll down for our pick of the five best vineyard resorts in the world. They all combine fine wine, great accommodation and breathtaking scenery…
Where vineyards flourish, wine tourism follows. And stylish vineyard-based resorts aren’t only to be found in heavyweight wine regions like Napa or Bordeaux. In lesser-known wine-producing areas all around the world, stylish resorts are ensuring oenophiles can eat, drink and sleep amid the vines. Take a trip to the heart of the terroir at these alluring wine resorts.
Entre Cielos: Mendoza, Argentina
Located in the Andean foothills in Argentina’s popular Mendoza wine-producing region, this luxurious resort is all about the vines. A sleek and modern concrete building, Entre Cielos is set in its own boutique vineyard. There are six distinct room and suite styles – each of which is named after a wine classification: the Young, the Classic, the Reserva, the Gran Reserva, the Gran Cru and the Limited Edition – a unique cocoon-style loft that stands on stilts, letting guests sleep among the lush vines.
Wine is at the fore of everything here, and malbec is the region’s most famous export. Guests are welcomed to Entre Cielos with a glass of their proprietary malbec rose, and can attend a free weekly wine tasting with the hotel sommelier. The winemaker, Hubert Weber, also makes frequent appearances to discuss wine production with guests. Entre Cielos is adjacent to Bodegas Nieto Senetiner winery, and is only about a 10-minute drive from French-run Alta Vista and the boutique Clos de Chacras. Other lauded wine regions within reach include Agrelo and the Uco Valley, where you’ll find world-renowned wineries including Salentein and Clos de los Siete.
The Inn at Glenora: Finger Lakes, New York
New York’s own wine-growing backyard is slowly but surely developing a reputation for fine wine tourism. There are five lakes in the region – one for each finger – but the wine production centers on Keuka and Seneca Lakes. At the Inn at Glenora Wine Cellars, each room features a private lake-facing deck or patio with an eyeful of vines.
From Glenora, you’ll be well placed to explore the Seneca Lake Wine Trail. But you don’t have to leave the resort for wine activities as there are tastings and tours on-site. Riesling and gewürztraminer are the region’s most famous exports, but there are some surprising alternative pours. Glenora is one of just a few wineries in the region that produce pinot blancs. During the Pinot Blanc Trilogy experience at Glenora, guests can sample three pinot blancs, each of which have been fermented in a different way: one in a stainless steel tank, another in oak barrels and another in the innovative concrete egg tank. “This project was extra rewarding to work on,” said Steve DiFrancesco, the winemaker at Glenora. “This unique tasting experience offers an opportunity for our guests to see how much of an impact the fermentation vessel makes on the wine, especially the concrete egg tank, which is something so new to the Finger Lakes.”
Bayit Bagalil: Galilee, Israel
Wine lovers are catching on to the drinkable delights of Galilee’s vine-covered hills. It’s a pastoral paradise, and its sloping vineyards and pine forests are a ringer for the Tuscan hills. Bayit Bagalil is a 34-suite Mediterranean-style stone chateau situated in an natural setting amid eight acres of forest in Galilee wine country. Though the hotel doesn’t have a winery of its own, vineyards and tasting rooms are easy to come by, with the award-winning family-run Adir winery and the Dalton winery just a few doors down. Tours and tastings at both can be arranged at the hotel. When you return to your lodgings at Bayit Bagalil, there are even more regional pours to sample at the bar, where the wine list is a who’s who of the best local producers. A restaurant with views of the grounds, an outdoor pool and an upscale spa with Ayurvedic and other wellness treatments round out the offerings.
Those are just three of our five favourite vineyard resorts – click here to read the rest of our selection. If you liked the article, you can read more of World Words’ work here… or why not come and chat to us on Twitter.