When Brancott Estate set about designing its Heritage Centre in 2011, it did so with environmental sustainability firmly in mind.
Designed to integrate seamlessly into the existing natural landscape and showcase Brancott Vineyard, the Brancott Estate Heritage Centre uses locally quarried rock on the roof (90m3) which blends the building into the landscape and reflects heat from the Marlborough summer sunshine.
The commitment to energy-efficiency and environmental considerations are some of the reasons Brancott Estate Heritage Centre is the first Marlborough Cellar Door to earn Enviro Award Gold from Qualmark, the official quality assurance system for the New Zealand tourism industry.
The building has high thermal efficiency with the use of concrete and double glazing for heat retention. Specific design features include wide eaves for sun protection and natural cross-flow ventilation for cooling, so there is no requirement for air conditioning. Rain and waste water are treated on site and released through an irrigation field in the hillside.
To achieve an Enviro Award Gold, businesses need to exceed the highest levels of environmental and social responsibility. Only one in 10 tourism operations will achieve this standard. Furthermore, businesses with this accreditation are audited annually to ensure they maintain their commitment to being environmentally responsible. Brancott Estate Heritage Centre has maintained its accreditation since August 2012.