Construction works of Sauska Sparkling Wine Cellar have started in Budafok. This project is unique, as the building itself does not appear at all on the surface level. The entire technology will be positioned in the hundred-year-old cellars, under the ground.

At the moment we are working on two projects for Sauska Winery. We are designing Elf Padi – the Tokaj region factory of the winehouse, the concept of which was on display at Decode exhibition earlier last year. Apart from this we were also asked to design a sparkling wine cellar a couple of years ago. Considering the existing Sauska wineries in Villany and Tokaj it seemed reasonable to position this new location in Budapest.

The company purchased a nearly 400 m long cellar in Budafok that is part of the district’s 100km long historic cellar system. The new location, which is a combination of several old plots, is positioned almost right on the riverbank, on Nagytetenyi Street. Entering the grounds there is a spacious court and right in front of us a nearly 10m high buttress wall from where the cellar doors open. The diameter of the cellar varies a great deal. The tallest ceiling height is 8.5 metres and the longest part to perceive at once is 120 metres long. The size and space is so spellbinding, it is almost like a sacred precinct. Three floors above the cellars lies a green hill with parks, offering a marvelous view on the Danube and the Csepel Island.

Our task is to renew the old cellar and modernise it where necessary so as to be suitable to host a state of the art sparkling wine factory. All functions are to be located in the existing cellar sections, which means no new buildings for the time being at least. Having designed a similar rehabilitation of a cellar labyrinth for Holdvolgy Winery in Mad we are perfectly aware how it demands creativity to install professional technology that is undetected and keep the original atmosphere of the cellar at the same time.

The proximity to the river Danube, the unique wine history of Budafok, the spectacular underground world and the panorama from the plateau are all hidden possibilities that are worth seizing and show to the public. It is our priority to plan something that can unfold all these values in the future. In the first phase a rational, modern factory will be build in the cellar branches. As for the long-term plans there are such ideas like a visitors’ centre built in the buttress wall, a restaurant, a nice terrace, an exhibition cellar and many more.

Constructions and demolition have begun this summer. The first step is evening out the platform of the different cellars, and then durability is to be ensured, some places are to be deepened, some are to be re-arched and the surfaces are to be cleaned. Considering the already existing old stone vents, a new ventilation system is to be installed, water and humidity balance is to be ensured, possible leeks to be handled. Simultaneously, in the zone parallel to the buttress wall the technology needed to run a factory is getting installed and social areas are being constructed. The sparkling wine cellar is expected to open at the end of this year.