I remember hearing that this particular hotel was built in part with funds from the EU to help increase the wine industry in areas that needed renovation, if anyone heard otherwise, please let us know. If this is true, than I feel sad that a behemoth winery like Marques de Riscal would use this money for something that only a few can fully enjoy. Yes, yes, I know it will bring tourism and people to the region, but the fact is, is that a bodega this big should be giving back to the community and sharing their wealth, not flaunting it.
The hotel / restaurant / museum offers a long and lengthy list of services including: Bang & Olufsen equiped rooms and wine spa! If you have the dough, it appears to be a nice place to visit in order to watch the peasants mill around outside looking up at the modern design as you sip wine from your personal hot tub!
As for the building, it looks beautiful! Plus, I’m sure the region will enjoy some more (heck it’s Rioja – Spain’s only wine region right?) international prestige. I’m also confident that Marques de Riscal will be inserted into every art history textbook ensuring visits from poor college students from art schools around the world for years to come. But all this prestige and fame does not negate my sadness for an architectural wonder reserved for the rich. What’s even worse is that other wineries are in the process of building their own hotels to house the elite. I just wish that there will come a day when a winery builds a hotel to welcome everyone. Hmmm, I can see it now: The Frank Gehry Youth Hostel – Backpackers Welcome!