Once you’ve completed the first steps of starting a winery, the fun begins. Of course, buying a winery, finding folks interested in working at a winery, and learning the winery definition and how to sell wine by the glass are all part of the fun too. Winery design, however, is one of the most exciting steps of the process.
This is where you get to decide if you'll host winery weddings or have intimate tasting events (or both). Similar to starting a bar or restaurant, the design of your winery is primarily up to you. The one constant is that you include the equipment and tools you need to run the winery. Let’s dive into how to design your winery.
Winery Design Plans
Your winery business plan should already include a rough estimate of your winery design plans. Whether this is a sketch or a map of the space you’ve purchased, your winery has been in your mind since day one. Now is the time to put those plans together, check them for feasibility, and start to design them in real life.
To ensure your winery design plans are detailed, there are a few factors to should include. Those details are:
- A shopping list of equipment, furniture, and decor pieces
- Systematic checklists for steps to complete along the way, from equipment set up to tasting room designs to inventory (an inventory spreadsheet will help)
- Budget systems (a software system will be helpful to keep track of everything)
Those lists can expand to include anything you need, but having those three set up to begin with will help you visualize your design.
Small Winery Design
If you’re working with a small space for your winery, you’ve got to make the most of every bit of space. How you do that will depend on your design aesthetic. That could mean putting a piece of decor in every space for a maximalist design. It could also mean utilizing blank space for contrast with a minimalist design.
The most important factor in designing a small winery space is the balance between necessary equipment and aesthetic goals. There are things like bottling equipment, wine barrels, and vine-growing tools you’ll need to fit into your space. You should start with those essentials, and then design the rest around them, to avoid creating a cramped space.
How to Design a Winery: 10 Design Tips
While all wineries are unique, there are design tips that work for any winery. There are some that are similar to bar design tips. Some are specific to wineries and tasting rooms. If you’ve already started on your winery design journey, you may find that you’ve already incorporated these ideas into your design plan.
Once you open your winery to the public, you may find that your design changes to work with what you learn about your customers. The first plan you come up with doesn’t need to be set in stone. Starting with the basics, however, and having a solid design plan is the best way to get your winery started on the right foot.
10. Find Your Colors
A key feature of design for any space is finding the right complementing colors. This tip for finding the colors for your winery is at number 10 because it is something small to start with. However, that’s not the only reason. Once you pick your color scheme, everything else will work within that scheme, including many of the other ideas on this list.
9. Create Spaces
Creating spaces, both overall and in small spaces, is crucial to creating a winery that invites customers to enjoy everything you have to offer. From your tasting room to your lobby to your back patio overlooking the vines, every space needs to be carefully crafted. In fact, it should be crafted to the point that it doesn’t look crafted–it should simply feel right.
8. Consider Your Architecture
This tip means something different for folks who are buying an existing winery versus those who are building their own space. If you’re buying an old winery with a distinct style, let that feed into your design choices.
If you can’t stand the architecture, and you have the budget to change it, you can do that too. Wherever you’re coming from with your architecture, don’t fight it with your design choices, because that dichotomy will show.
7. Let Wine Inspire
This design idea is another one that meshes with everything else on this list. You can draw wine-spiration from everything like the colors of your wine to its scent with customized air fresheners. Whatever is most incredible about your wine for you can feed into your overall design.
6. Invest in Wine Storage
Wine storage isn’t just about keeping your wine organized, it’s also about showcasing your bottles and barrels. For cellar tours or wine caves open to guests, a thoughtful storage system (with quality wine rack spaces) will make these spaces consistent with the rest of the winery.
5. Utilize Everything
While you’re designing a space that will draw in wine lovers, you’re first and foremost designing a functioning winery. This means you’ll have barrels, bottles, equipment, and–of course–vines already built into the list of your necessary items.
Your guests are coming to experience the beginning of the wine they love. Using these wine marketing items, from bottle displays to a bottling system tour throughout the design will work well.
4. Keep it Light
This idea is two-fold. On the one hand, keeping a light, easy feel to your design will make it a comfortable space for your guests to relax. On the other hand, lighting and temperature will play a big role in your winery’s design and comfort for guests.
A winery is typically best kept at a cooler temperature. Warm lighting will balance those cool temperatures to create an easy space to relax.
3. Find a Theme
This tip is crucial to any design. Your winery theme can be anything you like. It can be subtle, or it can be something impossible to ignore. Of course, the general theme is wine, but beyond that, you can get as creative as you like. Your theme should incorporate everything else on this list.
2. Aesthetics and Organization
A blending of aesthetics and organization is the base of any quality design. If you’re well organized, your winery will always be neat and orderly. When you mix that with an aesthetic that is thoughtful and open, you’ll attract the guests that will keep coming back, and that keeps your wine sales up.
1. Keep Growing
The most important aspect of any design is continual growth. Once you’ve chosen a design scheme and set it up for the grand opening, you may think that’s it. As your winery grows with more wine and guests, however, you’ll learn even more about what your design can achieve. Keeping an eye out for room for growth is the best way to always be happy with your design choices.
Frequently Asked Questions About Winery Design
The world of winery design is quite vast. Depending on your location, winery size, main customer base, and many other factors, your winery design can be anything you want it to be.
Of course, that freedom also brings with it a lot of questions. From the design's inception to a finished design that can be enjoyed by customers, there's always more to learn. Our answers to these frequently asked questions will help you further along your winery design journey:
How Do You Design a Winery?
Designing a winery is all about knowing the experience you want your customers to have, and building around it. From your furniture to your wine bottle display to your tasting room lighting, every design aspect is part of your customer service experience. Of course, all of that needs to fit around the equipment you need for your winery.
What Makes a Winery Successful?
A winery is successful as long as the wine produced is good, and potential customers are drawn in by effective marketing. With good marketing, you’ll get customers to your winery doors. From there, a well-designed winery will keep them coming back for more. The best you can plan for is a winery design that gives people a place they want to come and enjoy your wine.
How Do You Make a Winery Tasting Room?
A winery tasting room includes a space for a wine display, an area for tasting guests, and a spot for demonstrations of tasting techniques. Typically, tasting rooms are rather sparse, as the wine speaks for itself.
You can create an outdoor tasting space with a garden setting, or you can set up your tasting room in your wine cellars. As long as you have wine, and space for the tasting, the rest is up to you.
Winery Design: Decant Your Design
The key element of any winery design is a quality aesthetic that speaks to your goal for your winery. A winery is a business, but it is also a unique space that invites wine lovers to experience your wine through the winery design. While you’re designing your winery, always keep in mind what made you start a winery, and what you love about wine. Those elements will bring your design together.