For this year’s annual office trip, Bordeaux was chosen and it didn’t disappoint. The stunning French city is best known for its locally grown wine and Baroque style architecture.

A city visit by KSR Architects always includes an enlightened architectural tour. We especially marvelled at the grand Place de la Bourse, the Miroir d’Eau reflecting pool, the award-winning Pole le universitaire des sciences de gestion and the fabulous DARWIN centre.

Located among the warehouses of a former military barracks, the DARWIN centre, is an alternative space shared by 100 companies and 30 associations, united around a creative ecological pursuit which concentrated on sustainability. A great photographic exhibition was on whilst we were there, and after a couple of hours walking around the city, a well-earned coffee was enjoyed at the centre’s restaurant.

A must for any ‘foodie’ visiting the city, is Bordeaux’s main market hall, Marche des Capucins, a fabulous place to wonder round looking at the amazing food stalls, and to have a gorgeous lunch.

Just a short bike ride from the city centre, we were luckily enough to have a wonderful tour of the Philippe Starck and Luc Arsene-Henry’s new cellar for Chateau les Carmes Haut-Brion.

This innovative structure offers optimised, environmentally stable conditions for wine storage, by being partly submerged in a manmade lake. It contains a new vat house, a stunning barrel cellar, a series of reception rooms and a large roof terrace.

All in all, Bordeaux was an enormous success and will be up-there as one of the most enjoyable recent office trips.