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Perelada Winery

The landscape and land are the backbone of the architectural project drawn up by the RCR Arquitectes firm (Pritzker Prize in 2017) for the Perelada wineries. 
The project for the new winery dates back to about 20 years ago, when the Suqué Mateu family decided to place their trust in RCR Arquitectes. The firm consists of Rafael Aranda, Carme Pigem and Ramon Vilalta, and from the outset has made its mark with its designs that show respect for the surrounding environment and create as little impact on it as possible: an architecture aiming to be invisible. A balance with "La Granja", which is the original building and visitors centre, also had to be found for this specific project. The client wanted a timeless construction with a strong personality. 

Showing off the uniqueness of the land, the new construction is below ground level and makes the most of the slope: without rhetorical gimmicks and with no façade, the new Perelada winery displays its calm, discreet and contemporary personality. 
As well as endorsing a complete and deferential integration into the environment, the architectural project was committed to innovation and sustainability on all levels. 

In 2021, the new Perelada Winery was acclaimed the first European winery to be awarded LEED® Gold rating for the high standards of energy efficiency that its buildings met from the outset of the construction and continue to guarantee in operational and maintenance terms. 
The cornerstones of the project include the use of geometric energy, efficient water and electricity consumption, the choice of materials and sustainable processes, thermal insulation and a prevalence for natural light. In the evening, the artificial lighting consumes very little and is governed by an advanced control system. 

The natural and artificial lighting of the entire project was the work of Artecstudio that worked in close collaboration with RCR. One of the main challenges in the new winery came precisely from the desire to use natural light, given that the complex is underground. Maurici Gines started by analysing the natural light available until he managed to come up with the best lighting solution in harmony with the site's specifications: he recommended, for example, changes to the design of the skylights in order to enhance the entry of natural light. A Gothic splay was chosen for the opening: narrow at the top and wider at the bottom. Artecstudio also recommended a more transparent glass compared to the one selected initially as this would allow the light to enter more softly and reduce shadows in the work areas to a minimum. At night-time, light from the iRoll 65, produced in a special suspension version and with optics ranging from 50° to 80°, rains down through the slits in the architecture.

A part of the winery's work also involves welcoming visitors starting their tour at a depth of ten metres. The ritual of the visit starts in the Labyrinth, where videos are shown explaining the specific concept of the wine at the Perelada wineries. During the tour - as with the grapevines that produce the wine - the light emerges from the ground where recessed Linealuce mini 47 are arranged with wall grazing optics. The light guides visitors and disappears when the wall projections begin, then it re-emerges at the end of each video and guides the visitors towards the next room.
In the tank area that is a workspace, an attempt was made to uphold the link between light and architecture but also allows natural light to flow in to permit work by daylight. Artecstudio used the skylight structure to the best of its ability (size and corners) and the level of transmission of the glass to provide, for the longest period of time possible, 200 lux, the level of natural light illumination recommended for work. 

The visit continues in the barrel room, where the wine is perfected. This is an intimate, quiet space that combines the iRoll 65 inserted in the openings with grazing light, given off by the Linealuce mini 47 that creeps up the wall and spreads across the ceiling.

A sense of the shape of the walkway from where one can observe the various wine processing stages is achieved thanks to the Underscore InOut inserted into a cyma in the highest part. Other parts of the walkway are lit by recessed two-cell Laser Blades with medium optics.
The tour ends in the Temple, a unique space for the most special wines, those with which the winery identifies itself: a place of sensations that requires a subdued, respectful natural treatment that preserves the mystical essence.  

In this case, the artificial lighting coming from a continuous line of Linealuce mini 47, rises very softly from the ground upwards, highlighting the textures of the surfaces. 
An auditorium was created inside the "Granja" as well as spaces for tasting conviviality and sales. Underscore lines of light were used for the small auditorium to outline the perimeter and a special product was also manufactured called "Nihil" because it is truly minimal: the Palco Framer's optical luminaire was adapted so it could be applied as a recess. The same combination of equipment is used to light the tasting rooms as well as the Malaveina Room. The Underscore light lines create a soft, relaxing atmosphere while the "Nihil" luminaire, in some cases arranged in curved lines, creates a decorative effect on the ceiling itself. 

The layout of the outside enhances the open spaces shaded by a variety of plants typically found in Mediterranean climates. These green areas offer protection from the heat together with the use of a clear coloured external flooring. The artificial lighting at night is guaranteed by Underscore InOut and Laser Blade InOut, luminaires with an almost non-existent visual impact, that integrates fully into the architecture. 

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  • Year
  • Client
    Caves Perelada
    Perelada & Chivite
  • Architectural project:
    RCR Aranda Pigem Vilalta Arquitectes
  • Lighting project:
    Artec Studio - Maurici Ginés
  • Final design:
    EXEDRA Arquitectura
  • Photographer:
    Hisao Suzuki
    Pep Sau
  • 2023 IALD Awards of Excellence

Project Quote

"After analysing all the preconditions, a decision was taken to make the most of the space and disparity between the farm and bottom of the hill to construct the winery with a curved profile and finishing harmonious with the Granja. It is no longer a matter of a building but of a landscape. Not of a contingency plan but a silent, timeless intervention. Not of a split but of a natural continuous flow of the landscape of Empordà, just like the wine that, when poured, trickles from one's hands"

RCR Arquitectes

"The natural light and artificial light for the new Perelada winery project were dealt with in two ways: Firstly, in a way that shows off the building's architecture and, secondly in a way that unveils its soul and draws us into the narration of the wine."

Maurici Ginés, Artec Studio

2023 IALD Awards of Excellence

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