The planning and design of the new home of South Africa's well known sparkling wine, JC le Roux, was entrusted to GPB Consulting in 1996.

The House of JC le Roux is situated in the upper part of the pristine Devon Valley a few kilometers outside Stellenbosch in the Western Cape.

GPB's expertise is well suited for the overall planning of projects of this nature. We were able to successfully integrate the activities and atmosphere of a rural farm with those of a large scale sparkling wine bottling and maturation cellar and of a visitor-friendly high profile tasting area, wine sales and restaurant.

Our layout planning allows visitors to view the cellar activities from walkways and look-outs without interfering with the production process.

Visitors experience (smell, see, touch and taste) the various stages of sparkling wine made in the tradition of French champagne and known locally as Méthod Cap Classique. Through careful planning and layout, visitors are able to safely view the "sleeping" bottles undergoing second fermentation, the clarification process of remuage, removal of sediment (degorgement), further bottle maturation and finally labelling and warehousing.

The marriage of science and tradition is well illustrated in the modern automated pallet handling system which GPB designed for the transfer of bottles between the warehouses and the bottling hall.

Facilities were planned to incrementally accommodate identified production increases over a 10-year planning horison. GPB's site development masterplan for The House of JC le Roux provided an important initial planning input. We believe that much of our long term success over the past 20 years has resulted from the ease with which later extensions can be accommodated at GPB projects - all within a broader site masterplan.

GPB is proud that we were able to carry out this R30m project for Distillers Corporation (now Distell) within program and within budget.

We do not however only work on large projects such as this one. GPB is regularly involved in small projects. For instance the small 100 ton wine cellar in an existing shed which we planned, designed and supervised for Wildekrantz Cellar. We enjoy the variation in challenges which apply to large fast track projects on the one hand and those related to small project intense involvement on the other.


A section of the automatic pallet handling system.

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