One of Australia’s most treasured wineries, Domaine Chandon in the Yarra Valley, has opened its newly refurbished hospitality centre to enhance the visitor experience on-site. In launching a number of new spaces, the iconic home of sparkling wine pays homage to its French heritage, while accentuating the natural wonder of its Yarra Valley location.
The Yarra Valley winery – which was founded by French Champagne house Moët & Chandon in 1986 –partnered with interior design practice Foolscap Studio to overhaul the site.
The hospitality centre is a complete brand immersion for visitors, featuring: a new lounge bar, a revamped restaurant with a sparkling new menu by head chef Joshua Smyth, a retail boutique, as well as several tasting areas for visitors to try the range of Chandon’s products.
Estate Director of Domaine Chandon Australia, Shaine De Venny, said the company’s innovative spirit underpinned the new direction of their hospitality centre.
“Domaine Chandon has always dreamt big. In 1989 we broke new ground with a visitor centre in what was an underdeveloped region for wine tourism and now we enjoy one of the most spectacular vineyard sites in Australia,” said Ms De Venny.
“Fast forward almost three decades and we’re now one of the most popular wineries in the Yarra Valley, with over 250,000 visitors each year. It’s for this reason that we’ve upgraded our entire cellar door and introduced a new retail space to showcase our products in an immersive environment.”
De Venny added: “There are many cellar doors or lunch venues in the Yarra Valley, but very few options where you can sit down with friends and relax with a glass of wine in a lounge atmosphere. We wanted to fill this gap by creating a relaxed space in the heart of the hospitality centre for visitors to enjoy a drink with an unparalleled view.”
Foolscap Architect, Adele Winteridge, said the inspiration behind the design was centred on the winery’s French heritage and ‘méthode traditionnelle’ approach to making sparkling wine, married with the site’s lush Yarra Valley location.
“Chandon is about celebrating life with friends and family. We wanted to create an atmosphere that was casual, unpretentious and fun, whilst at the same time refined and elegant,” said Winteridge.
“We’ve done this by creating luxurious banquette seating coupled with a playful kinetic mobile centrepiece, to champion the concept of ‘bubbles’.”
The surrounding landscape and colours of the Chandon wines inspired the colour palette in the materials.
“The hospitality centre offers sweeping views of the estate and vineyards, so it was important to draw on the colours in the landscape to unify the inside and outside elements,” said Winteridge.
“We also utilised a mixture of different metals in various textures, like solid, mesh and perforated, referencing the alchemy involved in creating a bottle of sparkling.
“At the same time, using Australian sourced materials were key in creating a warm, elegant environment that celebrates the setting, such as Australian spotted gum timber and Chillagoe Dreamtime marble which is quarried in Queensland.”