The World renowned wines and cuisine may come to mind first, but Bordeaux offers so much more. Wide avenues lead you to stunning 18th-century buildings dotting the Garonne riverfront, beaches are temptingly close by and the museums are utterly captivating. Best Design Guides presents a complete city guide from this wonderful city in France.

See Also – Top 5 Bordeaux Museums and Art Galleries

Hotels and Resorts

The Relais de Margaux is a 4-star Deluxe Hotel with 100 rooms, swimming pool, tennis court, volleyball pitch and private harbor. The Gastronomic Restaurant delights the taste buds of all food-lovers. The hotel provides meeting rooms and banquet halls to ensure that your events are a success.

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The Hotel Chateau Grand Barrail is surrounded by a park located in the heart of the beautiful vineyards of Saint-Emilion. Join us in exploring our Resort with its four unique properties, and experience our “Island of Relaxation” in the middle of the world’s most famous wine region. Our 33 rooms and 9 suites are situated in the Chateau and the four properties. All rooms offer modern life comfort while respecting the Chateau flair. Whatever your taste and the type of relaxation you are looking for, we have the perfect room.

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The Grand Hotel Bordeaux is ideally located in the heart of the city, near excellent shopping and entertainment and close to popular wineries. This luxury hotel boasts 150 newly renovated rooms styled by French designer Jacques Garcia, The on-site gourmet eateries Le Pressoir d’Argent and Brasserie l’Europe provide tempting menus, and Victor Bar and L’Orangerie are ideal for relaxing with a cocktail.  The hotel’s indoor pool, wellness center and sauna facilities are a welcome retreat for guests.

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Galleries, Museums and Design Centers

The Musée des Arts Décoratif is housed in a fine 18th-century building. The museum’s exhibits include a variety of 18th and 19th-century porcelain as well as furniture, sculptures, prints and glassware from Bordeaux and other areas of France.

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Museum of Contemporary Art has a collection that includes such notable artists as Warhol, Dine, Magritte and Simon Hantai. The gallery hosts year-round exhibitions, workshops, and conferences. Particularly delightful is the roof top terrace where not only contemporary works await but also a terrace restaurant and café with excellent food and comfortable chairs – a local favorite.

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Musée d’Aquitaine, with nearly 150,000 visitors a year, the museum presents the history of Aquitaine Bordeaux and its region from prehistory to the present day, through its prestigious collections of archaeology, history and ethnography regional and extra-European. The “Museum of Civilization” presents each year several exhibitions exploring themes of history and world cultures. Finally, it provides the public with a cultural program: lecture, screenings, panel discussions, tours, concerts, meetings with foreign communities, educational workshops.

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Restaurants

Moshi Moshi is where Japan meets France head-on in a super-chic, minimalist fashion but where quality food is still the focus. The open kitchen lets you watch its celebrated chefs roll out sushi with unusual twists like foie gras and magret de canard (duck).

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Le Pressoir d‘Argent, the name is perhaps in honor of homard au pressoir, the chef‘s signature lobster dish. The seafood here is authentic and impressive. The opulent and luxurious decor by Jacques Garcia reflects the Baroque theatricality of the setting.

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Le Chapon Fin provides a 1900s grotto decor as for its fine modern cuisine, which is astutely inventive and delightfully flavorsome. The wine list has a superb selection of Bordeaux vintages.

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Spas

Spa Mozaik offers a variety of massages you can choose from to pamper yourself. They have a lot of other treatments as well. There are wonderful options like ayurvedic, Balinese and Oriental. The ambiance is greatly soothing and relaxing. The principles of Shiatsu are put to use for balancing energy flows in your body making you feel healthy, beautiful and rejuvenated. There are also packages available for men.

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Wineries

Chateau Mouton Rothschild not only is this magnificent chateau home of one of the world’s greatest red wines, but it is also a museum displaying the unique artworks used for the labels and vinous artifacts. Located in the village of Pauillac in the Medoc, 50 km northwest of the city of Bordeaux, this tremendous wine estate stretches across a vast 203 acres of grape vines made up of mostly Cabernet Sauvignon.

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Chateau de Pitray, for the last 600 years the Chateau de Pitray has been owned by the same family, the de Boignes. The current heirs, the Count and Countess de Boigne are committed to combining family traditions and heritage with modernity and progressiveness so that this sublime chateau and winery remains at the heart of Bordeaux wine culture and tourism.

Chateau Palmer, finesse, and elegance are at the heart of the Chateau Palmer, which has been characterized as being the “softness and refinement of silk, the warmth of velvet, and the leather of noblesse.” This truly exquisite estate produces unusual combinations of grape varieties, which unquestionably make Chateau Palmer one of the extraordinary complex wineries in France.

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Showrooms and Art Shows

La Belle et la Bête, by bringing together masterworks with leading international artists and new works from the collection of Bernard Magrez, Bernard Magrez Cultural Institute presents an exhibition of modern and contemporary art with artists like Abdessemed, David Altmejd, Valérie Belin, Marie Bovo Bernard Buffet, Micrea Cantor, John Creten, Wim Delvoye, Camile Henrot, Bharti Kher, Yves Klein, Labastie, Sigalit Landau, Liza Lou, René Magritte, André Masson, Boris Mikhailov, Moataz Nasr, Shirin Neshat, Othoniel Paola Pivi, Raysse, Germaine Richier, Raqib Shaw, Djamel Tatah, Veilhan and Yang Fudong.

Jean François Buisson – Artiste Sculpteur, after studies of communication, it integrates the Spina group as a beater. It is initiated with the welding to manufacture its own battery and launches out in a way spontaneous and surprising in creation of sculptures and furniture. It traverses the city, breakages, seeks, buys, piles up, and stores all kinds of “scrap”.

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Points of Interest

Palais de la Bourse,built in the 18th century this magnificent building is on the Place de la Bourse along with the Hotel des Douanes. The ensemble is a wonderful collection of 18th-century architecture and all with a view over the river. In the center of the Place de la Bourse is La Fontaine des Trois Graces, representing Empress Eugenie, Queen Victoria and the Queen of Spain. Opposite, just in front of the river is the Miroir d’eau, a large, shallow body of water making a mirror on the pavement.

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Grand-Theatre, this 18th-century building is now the Bordeaux National Opera House. At the front are 12 large columns giving the building a classical beauty. Inside the theater is decorated

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Cathedrale Saint Andre, the cathedral as well as the Basilique Saint Seurin and Basilique and Fleche Saint Michel have all been listed as UNESCO World Heritage Sites since 1998 as part of the pilgrim road to Compostela. The cathedral was built in the 11-16th century and restored in the 19th. Unusually its bell tower is completely separate to the cathedral and stands 8m away – designed so that the bells would not threaten the main cathedral structure. The bell tower is a listed French National Monument.

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Grosse Cloche, this is a wonderful fairy-tale style bell tower built in the 13-15th century. It is the last remainder of the Saint Eloi gateway and was part of the town hall. The bell is tolled to announce major public events. Note the astronomical clock on the bell tower and the leopard, rather than a more traditional cock, on top of the weather-vane.

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Basilique et Fleche Saint Michel, the church was started in the 14th century and completed two centuries later. It is built in the gothic style. It too has a separate bell tower, known locally as La Fleche (the arrow). At 114 meters high this is the second highest in France.

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Porte Cailhau, built in the 15-16 centuries this defensive gateway can be visited during the summer. This is another building that looks like it has come out of a Cinderella movie.

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The St-Pierre District, lots of narrow streets and medieval buildings forming a charming contrast to the elegant splendor of the 18th-century boulevards around the Grand Theatre.

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See Also: The Art of Dining in the South of France: La Colombe d’Or by Christine Chang Hanway

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