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August 21, 2007

Wine With Altitude

Posted in: Architecture


Designed by Chris Kelly of Architecture Workshop and built by Lunds South Contracting, this stunning building was commissioned for business in December 2003. Already the winery building has enchanted people from around the world and elicited a great deal of attention from the design and building communities.

Winning awards from London based Architecture Review magazine and the NZ Institute of Architects, this is what has been said about the building in its natural environment:

One Central Otago label is not only winning international awards for its wine – it is winning them for its winery. Wellington firm Architecture Workshop has been named one of five winners in the prestigious London-based ar+d emerging architecture awards for its design for the Peregrine Winery in Gibbston, Queenstown.

It is the first time there has been a NZ winner of this prestigious competition.

The competition, run annually by leading UK architecture magazine The Architectural Review and open to architecture practices worldwide, aims “to bring wider international recognition to a talented new generation of architects”. The 2004 competition attracted over 500 entries “of a high order” from over 50 countries worldwide, judged by an international panel of architects.

The jury described the Winery as “an elegant blade of light [that] contrasts with the rugged and sublime natural landscape. The age-old process of making wine has been radically reinterpreted for our time.”

Judging criteria included sensitivity to ‘spirit of place’, awareness of ecological implications, constructional ingenuity, sensitive understanding of materials, and inventiveness in handling space and light.

Peregrine co-owner Adam Peren says the building was inspired by the wine – and now vice versa. “This award rewards Architecture Workshop’s success in creating a building that relates so well to both the built and unbuilt aspects of its environment.”

The building has a simple industrial character, overlaid by a translucent rising roof canopy that unifies ‘front of house’ and ‘back of house’ and gives the building a light ephemeral presence in the dramatic landscape. It uses the utilitarian materials of neighbouring rural buildings – the roof of Duralite industrial cladding directly fixed to galvanised steel roof purlins.

“It was recognised early on that the building would be important in reinforcing the Peregrine wine brand,” says architect Christopher Kelly, “and the canopy roof may be interpreted on a number of levels: a transformation reflecting the process the grapes go through, as the roof rises from its low gradient at the river end to the 25 degree slope at the woolshed end. On a more literal level some see it becoming one of the uprising rock reefs, which mark the ancient geology of the valley.

“For us, however, the changing roof gradient was inspired by old images freezing the kinetic rotation of a bird in flight. The roof is evocative of the majesty the Peregrine or native falcon (the Karerea) has as it glides on the thermal uplifts off the heated land.”

Peregrine Wines

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