Above: Note how the Ca’ Marcanda winery “sinks” into the surrounding landscape.

The guiding principle behind the conception, design, and construction of the Ca’ Marcanda winery is simple: to the great extent possible, designer Giovanni Bo sought to minimize the impact the natural beauty and ecological balance of Bolgheri. When Angelo Gaja approached his longtime collaborator and friend, architect Bo, to draw up the blueprints for this innovative winery, the guiding criterion was that of minimizing the impact on the environment.

Architect Bo delivered a design for a winery sunken into the ground, perfectly integrated into the landscape and historical architectonic style of Bolgheri. One of his crowning achievements is the fact that the sunken winery cannot be seen from the road. In fact, the visitors are not aware of the facility until they arrive on site.

All of the materials used to construct the winery were culled from the property itself. The same classic brown limestone found in houses dating back to the Middle Ages was used for the ground level building. And all the piping and tiling used in the winery’s natural temperature controlled systems was repurposed from abandoned factories in northern Italy and central Europe (from as far away as Czech Republic).

Not even the oldest olive tree was removed from the property to allow for construction. In fact, an entire olive grove was replanted around the perimeter of the winery to naturally integrate the structure into the landscape of the surrounding countryside.