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I have been lucky enough to attend FINE, the most important wine tourism fair, and in the wine capital of Spain, in Valladolid. It was my very first time in the capital of Castilla y León and I was excited, I discovered a walkable city, with a wide cultural offer and as expected a spectacular gastronomy and even more spectacular wines.The Feria de Valladolid, despite the difficulties of the pandemic, organized FINE, which has been a success, we all were very happy to return to physical events and greet people not only online.
To enter it was compulsory to do an antigen test –  kindly offered onsite free of charge – and to wear a FFP2 mask. Temperature intake when entering, hydroalcolic gel everywhere and all aware of respecting the social distance.
The event has been divided in three parts: the exhibition, a one-to-one meeting area of exhibitors with hosted buyers from all over the world, and some very interesting conferences in the auditorium. A perfect proposal to make the visit fruitful and interesting for everyone.And for me, as expert in luxury hotels and destinations, enotourism is one of my favorite segments because specially now, with the theme of security, hotels in wine cellars offer lots of space, privacy, exclusivity and security.
See here my pics of Valladolid, such a nice city!
See here my full experience in FINEFeria de Valladolid
I am sharing my top discovers in FINE:
In Portugal:
WOW: The project WOW in the wonderful Portuguese city of Porto, compounds 6 museums, 3 wine cellars and 3 hotels. A total of 39.000m2 of cultural, gastronomic, and retail experiences located in renovated centuries-old wine cellars in the historic Vila Nova de Gaia neighborhood (the Port wine cellar district). This prime real estate in the city has impressive panoramic views of Porto and the Douro River that can “wow” visitors from day to night.In FINE I made a wine pairing with their new bean-to-bar chocolate, Vinte Vinte, and truly a delicious experience to combine their wines with their chocolates.The hotels proposed by WOW are: The Yeatman which is in the top of Vilanova de Gaia and offering stunning views of the city, Infante Sagres in the center of Porto, which was the first 5 star hotel in the city, and Vintage Hotel at the Douro river.
A complete and unique wide enotourism experience with WOW.The Lodge Wine & Business Hotel: located in Porto in the historic Vila Nova de Gaia neighborhood, just opened June 1st 2021. It offers 119 sophisticated rooms and 4 conference rooms.The Dona Maria Restaurant, focuses on the traditions of Portuguese cuisine, using carefully selected organic and seasonal ingredients. Wine pairing and wine tasting is part of their hotel experiences.
Can`t wait to be back in Porto and enjoy The LodgeQuinta da Pacheca: it occupies around 75 hectars of vineyards at the Douro river and focused in Douro DOC and Port wines since 1977. The whole enotourism project started in 1995 with the very first guided tours to the property and sales.The concept was further developped and in 2009 they opened the Wine House Hotel Quinta da Pacheca, it has 49 rooms in the main building and 10 barrels where you can sleep in. Truly top and original.
Their Vineyard Spa offers a sublime experience combining wine tradition with the prestigious Elemis brand.In Spain:
Castilla Termal: the emblematic history of each of the buildings of Castilla Termal Hotels makes them really special. Their 4 hotels are focused in sustainability, wellness, and gastronomy.,
Each of the historic buildings has been carefully restored and to stay in one of them is a trip to the past ad well as something unique.
They produce just one wine of Ribera del Duero, Converso, only 8.000 bottles.They propose a 360 degrees tour experience starting from Madrid: discover Monasterio de Valbuena, located in the Cistercian monastery of the 12th century best preserved in Europe, next drive to Balneario de Olmedo on the walls of the old convent of the 12th century of Sancti Spiritus, and end in Burgo de Osma in the old Renaissance university of Santa Catalina, the three combine a careful selection of the best wine experiences, a rich gastronomy and culture options.Bodegas Arzuaga: the wines are produced in the farm La Planta, in the town of Quintanilla de Onésimo in Valladolid, so DOC Ribera del Duero. This farm has a privileged location for the cultivation of the vine, since its strains receive the sun and moisture necessary for the perfect maturation of the grape. Here find flora composed of pines, holm oaks and junipers and a fauna formed by wild boars and deers amidst 1400 hectars.
The production is around 2 million bottles.The Arzuaga Hotel was opened in 2009 and has 96 rooms and an awesome spa. If you happen to be in the huge garden, do not be surprised if a deer approaches around.
They have two restaurants, one of them, Taller Arzuaga, has 1 star Michelin, with a traditional local gastronomy influenced by Peruvian touches thanks to chef Víctor Gutiérrez.
Added to my #bucketlistAbadía Retuerta: just 2 hours away from Madrid and 30 minutes from Valladolid, you can find this stuning old abbey reconverted into the perfect pairing between nature, gastronomy, rest, well-being and luxury.
A wide range of unique experiences is what Abadía Retuerta LeDomaine proposes, a destination dedicated to well-being. Among them, Santuario LeDomaine Wellness & Spa and its exclusive treatments. In the former hostelry, the 27 double rooms and 3 suites of LeDomaine have been carefully restored and fitted out in unique style in keeping with the requirements of a 5-star hotel.The Refectorio restaurant, boasting one Michelin star since 2014, relies on the products and producers of the area to present a culinary offering in line with the current contemporary and creative excellence.
Enotourism experiences also include yoga among the vineyards or globus flying above the property.