Mondrian Bordeaux Les Carmes opens

Posted in News on 19 November, 2023

A warm, vibrant and poetic new place in Bordeaux, France. Respectful of its past while looking to the future.

Real estate group Pichet, lifestyle hospitality company Ennismore, and creator Philippe Starck are pleased to announce the opening of Mondrian Bordeaux Les Carmes*****, a new inspired destination in the heart of Bordeaux’s historic Chartrons district.

Mondrian Bordeaux Les Carmes offers an authentic and refined five-star hotel with 97 rooms and suites, an elegant Japanese-inspired Morimoto restaurant and bar, a spa with swimming pool and fitness area, and two conference rooms.

It is a unique place that calls to the culturally curious as a tangible celebration of harmony, joy, elegance, and hospitality.

All Bordeaux residents are familiar with the sumptuous stone façade stretching across the 81, cours du Médoc. Built in 1871, the Hanappier and Calvet winery was extended ten years later by architect Charles Brun in the neo-Gothic style. This is the building as it appears today, with its thirteen crenellated bays framing the main entrance and a gable bearing the United Kingdom’s coat of arms set above the arched doorway – a nod to the city’s historic commercial links with the British Isles.

And so, for two centuries, the building was at the beating heart of the wine trade in this area intrinsically connected to its industry and art. The Garonne River flows nearby, facilitating global trade and exports of fine wines, cognac and brandy stored in the twenty-two vaulted cellars lit by gauze spouts. In 1966, however, a fire destroyed the cellars housing a century’s worth of grands crusclassés.

In 2018, the Pichet family entrusted the property to creator Philippe Starck, who, accompanied by Jean-François Le Gal (architecture firm Advento), renovated the historic facade and created a refined five-star hotel that extends it and houses an elegant Japanese-inspired restaurant, a true link between pastand future, West and East.

“The Mondrian Bordeaux Les Carmes is a château built with high-quality stones and brickworks of elegance, where you live more because you are loved cared for. Here is real life, the fertile one that always evolves and thrives on encounters – and often the most unlikely become the most likely. It is no longer a possibility but a certainty that the Mondrian Bordeaux Les Carmes is our necessity.” Philippe Starck, Architectural Designer and Artistic Director of Mondrian Bordeaux Les Carmes

“Following in the footsteps of the Château les Carmes Haut-Brion winehouse, the choice of Philippe Starck for the architectural design and artistic direction was an obvious one for us. Through this project, history and modernity come together to arouse emotion and offer an experience marked by strong, immersive novelties” Patrice Pichet, Chairman and CEO of the eponymous group.

Born of a purely French spirit, Mondrian Bordeaux Les Carmes has, according to Philippe Starck, “the refinement of an oxymoron”. “We are in the presence of extremely graceful architecture dating from 1870, which belongs in the traditionof Bordeaux’s chartreuses and is, at the same time, somewhat strange. Even stranger things are going to happen here: fertile encounters that are more the result of a collision than of a bourgeois desire to attune. And so begin theoptical and mental games that are so dear to me.”

From the entrance with its immense pointed-arch glass door, opens up a diorama of Bordeaux and Japanese atmospheres.

A surprisingly cosmopolitan place, where everything lives together and overlaps: the soft, earthy colors naturally derived from the elegant local stone and brick, the modernity of the rough concrete reminiscent of the original building’s warehouses, the deep carpets and rugs with their organic patterns, the sophistication of the Japanese art of living, the warm light diffused by the lampshades and lanterns that line the entire space as a unifying element.

The Mondrian Bordeaux Les Carmes generates its own energy, its own sense. It is an honest and poetic place, aware of the past and belonging to the future, where it is good to live, work and be entertained all year round.

The Mondrian Bordeaux Les Carmes is as warm and refined as its surroundings. The 97 rooms and suites have been designed by Philippe Starck as cocoons, intimate spaces bathed in soft, harmonious light. Here too, priority is given to noble, natural materials – leather seats, wooden doors, boiled wool curtains – and to earthy colors, as well as to clean, essential lines, particularly in the bathrooms. Everywhere, the mind is drawn to trompe-l’oeils and mental games such as the hollow-molded concrete walls, whose poetic message is reflected in the adjoining mirrors.

“This hotel is a warm place, with a rare quality of staging and lighting. Above all, it is a place to feel extremely well, a place that is clearly French and Bordeaux, but that will transport you elsewhere, to a totally invented elsewhere where a few more or less real landmarks literally float by.” Philippe Starck

Several rooms and suites open onto private terraces planted with luxuriant greenery, and two of the hotel’s suites can be connected for special events, giving access to a majestic terrace on the building’s roof-façade.

“The Mondrian Bordeaux Les Carmes is born from a love story between the West and the East. In the West are the terroir, the roots, the experience and the talent of Bordeaux. The unexpected comes from the East, from Japan, with another talent, another tradition, another experience that has found its way here like an exotic bird coming to nest. The East and the West, not blended in but superimposed.” Philippe Starck

East is superimposed on the West by strong motifs: pagoda lamps nestled in lanterns, calligraphy and contemporary Japanese art. As is traditional in Japan, guests can also dine at the sushi bar, where chefs prepare Franco-Japanese specialties in the restaurant’s scenic open kitchen.

In a nod to the confidentiality required for the business that has made Bordeaux a crossroads for the international wine trade, Philippe Starck has imagined a space at the edge of the restaurant, housing a table for eight that can be privatized by means of Japanese panels. Once a month, this salon will become a discreet gastronomic table where guests can enjoy a food/wine/sake pairing specially created by Chef Morimoto and his teams.

As in Japan, where bistros – Izakayas – and wine bars are an integral part of the culture, the bar offers creative cocktails, spirits and fine wines, as well as sake and Japanese beers. The cellar is a tribute to the origins of the building, housing over 10,000 bottles, including prestigious Bordeaux wines alongside a curated international selection. The joyful, festive spirit of the Izakaya reigns here.

Luminous heart of Mondrian Bordeaux Les Carmes, conceived as a natural continuation of the restaurant, the 200m2 tree-lined terrace, open and protected from the hustle and bustle of the city, can seat 70 diners. These spaces come alive at nightfall to become the festive, privileged rendezvous for late afternoons and weekends; a DJ will be on hand from Thursday to Saturday evenings from 9pm.

With a swimming pool, spa, hammam, sauna and fitness room, the Mondrian Bordeaux Les Carmes’ wellness area is a welcoming place bathed in light and dedicated to holistic well-being.

The swimming pool, with its large windows opening onto the terrace, unfurls its 45m2 pool under a warm wooden ceiling. The space includes a steam room and an infra-red sauna.

The spa’s four spacious cabins – one of which is double – offer a wide range of treatments designed to enhance the well-being of body and mind, such as a number of targeted beauty rituals -ancestral, serenity or slimming-, foot reflexology, shiatsu, sophrology and guided meditation sessions.

Le Mondrian Bordeaux Les Carmes has partnered with the French brand of contemporary vegan cosmetology, Codage, for its beauty and well-being offer, featuring cocktails of active ingredients adapted to each skin type.

The fitness area, open 24/7 to hotel guests and members by subscription, is equipped with high-performance training machines for wellness-minded athletes.

“At Mondrian Bordeaux Les Carmes, our guests are taken on a real voyage thanks to the culinary talents of our chefs, the different combinations of flavors and the techniques they use. But also thanks to the unique atmosphere of the place imagined by Philippe Starck.”

Bruno G.Tailly, General Manager, Mondrian Bordeaux Les Carmes

Bathed in natural light thanks to their proximity to the tree-lined central patio, the two conference rooms, Studio I and Studio II, are available for seminars and private events. Comfortable and elegant, both spaces provide tailor-made event services and state-of-the-art technology.

Available to hire as a combined 112m. space or separated into two, more intimate studios, the rooms are entirely flexible in configuration, ideally suited to everything from theater-style presentations to small meetings or large-scale banquets. The restaurant offers a varied menu for coffee breaks, lunches, dinners and cocktails.

About Mondrian
Mondrian is more than a hotel: it’s a way of travel. Known for its groundbreaking design and progressive programming it is a “must” destination for locals or travelers. Mondrian is always at the heart of the most exciting cultural scenes in the world, serving up innovation and creativity for everyone. Mondrian provides a playful framework so that guests and locals alike can immerse themselves in the culture of each city it inhabits. Design is at the center of the Mondrian experience with hotels designed by some of the world’s most famous architects and designers, including Philippe Starck and Marcel Wanders. With 11 properties in Los Angeles, Miami, New York, London, Doha, Mexico City, Cannes, Seoul, Ibiza, Bordeax and Singapore, the brand is experiencing tremendous growth with upcoming openings in Hong Kong, Australia’s Gold Coast and more.

About Groupe Pichet
For more than 35 years, the Pichet group has extended its expertise to include real estate development, property management, hotels and serviced residences, real estate and vineyards, with the acquisition of Châteaux les Carmes Haut-Brion. A key player in the French real estate market, it has left its mark on the entire country. Building on its experience, the group is pursuing its development in the hotel market: hotel residences and the upscale hotel segment with the Radisson Blu Grand Hotel & Spa, Malo-les-Bains and the Mondrian Bordeaux Les Carmes.

About Philippe Starck
Philippe Starck, world famous creator with multifaceted inventiveness, is always focused on the essential, his vision: that creation, whatever form it takes, must improve the lives of as many people as possible. This philosophy has made him one of the pioneers and central figures of the concept of “democratic design”.

By employing his prolific work across all domains, from everyday products (furniture, a citrus-squeezer, electric bikes, an individual wind turbine), to architecture (hotels, restaurants that aspire to be stimulating places) and naval and spatial engineering (mega yachts, space habitation module), he continually pushes the boundaries and requirements of design, becoming one of the most visionary and renowned creators of the international contemporary scene.

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