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Highly anticipated opening: A new LALIQUE hotel and restaurant is preparing to open its doors at Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey



Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey

A new project initiated by Silvio Denz, Chairman and CEO of Lalique, and headed by David Bolzan, Managing Director of Vignobles Silvio Denz, will open in time to mark the 400th anniversary of Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey, with the official inauguration planned for 23 June 2018.

A page of history… 

Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey is a very old wine-producing estate of 36 hectares situated in the heart of the Sauternes region, on high ground just outside the village of Bommes. Long months of renovation are transforming the château into a top-class hotel and restaurant. The building, considered the Bommes municipality’s oldest monument, dates back to the 13th century and contains almost eight centuries of history within its walls. Built on the site of a Roman staging post, the château features ancient stonework, a perimeter wall and gatehouse.

The history and reputation of Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey are inextricably bound up with those of the Sauternes appellation and the 1855 classification. This classification of Bordeaux wines was established on the occasion of the Universal Exhibition held in Paris in 1855 at the behest of Emperor Napoleon III. The merits of the sweet white wine of Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey were therefore recognized early on, with a classification among the Premiers Crus Classés. It also owed its reputation to King Alphonse XII of Spain who declared it his favourite wine.

A choice location…

The Lafaurie-Peyraguey vineyard is situated at the heart of the great terroirs of Sauternes, on a high terrace with gravelly soil, 70 metres above sea level, next to the legendary Château d’Yquem. Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey was soon regarded as one of the region’s finest architectural gems from its viticultural tradition, the pride of its first proprietor, Sieur Peyraguey in 1618.

A timeless renovation designed by Lalique…

Purchased in 2014 by Silvio Denz, Chairman and CEO of Lalique and owner of five vineyards in the Bordeaux region, including Château Faugères, Saint-Emilion Grand Cru Classé purchased in 2005, Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey is getting ready to greet a new dawn. Redesigned as a luxury hotel with a gourmet restaurant, the entire establishment has been decorated by interior designers Lady Tina Green and Pietro Mingarelli. Already well known for their Lalique Maison collection and the Villa René Lalique project (five-star hotel and gourmet restaurant with two Michelin stars, a member of the Relais & Châteaux collection), the two designers opted for a “country chic” style, with original creations inspired by the theme of wine. The result is a new interpretation of Lalique interior design, imbued with the character of the site and the history of the château, with new materials and colours adopted from the Sauternes countryside. The incrustations of Lalique crystal are part of an interplay of elegance and simplicity that blends luminosity and gentle living. As Silvio Denz explains, this latest LALIQUE hotel, managed by Christophe Noulibos, comprising ten rooms and three suites, is intended as a place “where four worlds – wine, crystal, gastronomy and hospitality – come together, for all forms of creativity have something in common”.

Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey

Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey

A restaurant offering the finest French cuisine …

Silvio Denz’s idea from the outset was to establish a second showcase for Lalique’s hospitality, one located in the greatest terroir of Bordeaux Crus Classés – a world first. The man taking up this gastronomic challenge is Jérôme Schilling, former executive chef at Villa René Lalique alongside the three Michelin-starred chef Jean-Georges Klein, who will take charge of the restaurant kitchen serving around forty covers. A native of Alsace, Jérôme Schilling gained his spurs with some of the great names of French gastronomy, the likes of Hubert Maetz, Joël Robuchon, Roger Verger, Thierry Marx, Jean-Luc Rocha and Guy Lassausaie.

In 2010, he led the French team at Bocuse d’Or. In 2015, he was a finalist in the prestigious Meilleurs Ouvriers de France contest. In 2017, he won first prize in the Challenge Culinaire du Président de la République. With his sights set on continuing to deliver excellence, Jérôme Schilling will preside over a new domain that he has rapidly made his own.

The wine cellar …

The project is headed by Adrien Cascio in partnership with Romain Iltis, Chef Sommelier at Villa René Lalique, who gained the titles of Meilleur Sommelier de France in 2012 and Meilleur Ouvrier de France in 2015. Together, they have created an ambitious wine list with diverse influences: a rich selection of Sauternes, a highly impressive choice of the best Bordeaux Crus and a great variety of more affordable wines. But there is also a nod in the direction of Alsace, the cradle of Lalique; and the great domains beyond France’s borders are also represented. Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey’s own historic wine cellar houses a spectacular selection of whites and reds. There are two additional cellars which serve for aging ancient vintages and rare nectars. In total, wine lovers have a selection of 350,000 bottles to savour.The wine store is open to visitors – even those just passing through – offering bottles to take home.

legendary Château d’Yquem

legendary Château d’Yquem

Through Lafaurie-Peyraguey, Silvio Denz wishes to contribute to the creation of high-end wine tourism in the Sauternes region. This new project will bring fresh momentum to the smallest Bordeaux appellation and attract a large number of visitors to this multi-facetted region, with the object of rekindling the love affair with the great wines of Sauternes.

“Our dream was to create a focal point where conviviality and the emotional engagement people feel with the region can be celebrated. No other wine in the world touches the emotions quite like Sauternes; it needed a prestigious address. We aim to ensure that Lafaurie-Peyraguey will be that place – … welcoming, amazing and surprising…”: David Bolzan, Managing Director at Vignobles Silvio Denz.

Opening set for 23 June 2018.

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UK seeks G7 consensus on digital competition after Facebook blackout



UK seeks G7 consensus on digital competition after Facebook blackout 1

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain is seeking to build a consensus among G7 nations on how to stop large technology companies exploiting their dominance, warning that there can be no repeat of Facebook’s one-week media blackout in Australia.

Facebook’s row with the Australian government over payment for local news, although now resolved, has increased international focus on the power wielded by tech corporations.

“We will hold these companies to account and bridge the gap between what they say they do and what happens in practice,” Britain’s digital minister Oliver Dowden said on Friday.

“We will prevent these firms from exploiting their dominance to the detriment of people and the businesses that rely on them.”

Dowden said recent events had strengthened his view that digital markets did not currently function properly.

He spoke after a meeting with Facebook’s Vice-President for Global Affairs, Nick Clegg, a former British deputy prime minister.

“I put these concerns to Facebook and set out our interest in levelling the playing field to enable proper commercial relationships to be formed. We must avoid such nuclear options being taken again,” Dowden said in a statement.

Facebook said in a statement that the call had been constructive, and that it had already struck commercial deals with most major publishers in Britain.

“Nick strongly agreed with the Secretary of State’s (Dowden’s) assertion that the government’s general preference is for companies to enter freely into proper commercial relationships with each other,” a Facebook spokesman said.

Britain will host a meeting of G7 leaders in June.

It is seeking to build consensus there for coordinated action toward “promoting competitive, innovative digital markets while protecting the free speech and journalism that underpin our democracy and precious liberties,” Dowden said.

The G7 comprises the United States, Japan, Britain, Germany, France, Italy and Canada, but Australia has also been invited.

Britain is working on a new competition regime aimed at giving consumers more control over their data, and introducing legislation that could regulate social media platforms to prevent the spread of illegal or extremist content and bullying.

(Reporting by William James; Editing by Gareth Jones and John Stonestreet)


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Britain to offer fast-track visas to bolster fintechs after Brexit



Britain to offer fast-track visas to bolster fintechs after Brexit 2

By Huw Jones

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain said on Friday it would offer a fast-track visa scheme for jobs at high-growth companies after a government-backed review warned that financial technology firms will struggle with Brexit and tougher competition for global talent.

Finance minister Rishi Sunak said that now Britain has left the European Union, it wants to make sure its immigration system helps businesses attract the best hires.

“This new fast-track scale-up stream will make it easier for fintech firms to recruit innovators and job creators, who will help them grow,” Sunak said in a statement.

Over 40% of fintech staff in Britain come from overseas, and the new visa scheme, open to migrants with job offers at high-growth firms that are scaling up, will start in March 2022.

Brexit cut fintechs’ access to the EU single market and made it far harder to employ staff from the bloc, leaving Britain less attractive for the industry.

The review published on Friday and headed by Ron Kalifa, former CEO of payments fintech Worldpay, set out a “strategy and delivery model” that also includes a new 1 billion pound ($1.39 billion) start-up fund.

“It’s about underpinning financial services and our place in the world, and bringing innovation into mainstream banking,” Kalifa told Reuters.

Britain has a 10% share of the global fintech market, generating 11 billion pounds ($15.6 billion) in revenue.

The review said Brexit, heavy investment in fintech by Australia, Canada and Singapore, and the need to be nimbler as COVID-19 accelerates digitalisation of finance, all mean the sector’s future in Britain is not assured.

It also recommends more flexible listing rules for fintechs to catch up with New York.

“We recognise the need to make the UK attractive a more attractive location for IPOs,” said Britain’s financial services minister John Glen, adding that a separate review on listings rules would be published shortly.

“Those findings, along with Ron’s report today, should provide an excellent evidence base for further reform.”


Britain pioneered “sandboxes” to allow fintechs to test products on real consumers under supervision, and the review says regulators should move to the next stage and set up “scale-boxes” to help fintechs navigate red tape to grow.

“It’s a question of knowing who to call when there’s a problem,” said Kay Swinburne, vice chair of financial services at consultants KPMG and a contributor to the review.

A UK fintech wanting to serve EU clients would have to open a hub in the bloc, an expensive undertaking for a start-up.

“Leaving the EU and access to the single market going away is a big deal, so the UK has to do something significant to make fintechs stay here,” Swinburne said.

The review seeks to join the dots on fintech policy across government departments and regulators, and marshal private sector efforts under a new Centre for Finance, Innovation and Technology (CFIT).

“There is no framework but bits of individual policies, and nowhere does it come together,” said Rachel Kent, a lawyer at Hogan Lovells and contributor to the review.

($1 = 0.7064 pounds)

(Reporting by Huw Jones; editing by Jane Merriman and John Stonestreet)


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G20 to show united front on support for global economic recovery, cash for IMF



G20 to show united front on support for global economic recovery, cash for IMF 3

By Michael Nienaber and Andrea Shalal

BERLIN/WASHINGTON/ROME (Reuters) – The world’s financial leaders are expected on Friday to agree to continue supportive measures for the global economy and look to boost the International Monetary Fund’s resources so it can help poorer countries fight off the effects of the pandemic.

Finance ministers and central bank governors of the world’s top 20 economies, called the G20, held a video-conference on Friday. The global response to the economic havoc wreaked by the coronavirus was at top of the agenda.

In the first comments by a participating policymaker, the European Union’s economics commissioner Paolo Gentiloni said the meeting had been “good”, with consensus on the need for a common effort on global COVID vaccinations.

“Avoid premature withdrawal of supportive fiscal policy” and “progress towards agreement on digital and minimal taxation” he said in a Tweet, signalling other areas of apparent accord.

A news conference by Italy, which holds the annual G20 presidency, is scheduled for 17.15 (1615 GMT)

The meeting comes as the United States is readying $1.9 trillion in fiscal stimulus and the European Union has already put together more than 3 trillion euros ($3.63 trillion) to keep its economies going despite COVID-19 lockdowns.

But despite the large sums, problems with the global rollout of vaccines and the emergence of new variants of the coronavirus mean the future of the recovery remains uncertain.

German Finance Minister Olaf Scholz warned earlier on Friday that recovery was taking longer than expected and it was too early to roll back support.

“Contrary to what had been hoped for, we cannot speak of a full recovery yet. For us in the G20 talks, the central task remains to lead our countries through the severe crisis,” Scholz told reporters ahead of the virtual meeting.

“We must not scale back the support programmes too early and too quickly. That’s what I’m also going to campaign for among my G20 colleagues today,” he said.


Hopes for constructive discussions at the meeting are high among G20 countries because it is the first since Joe Biden, who vowed to rebuild cooperation in international bodies, became U.S. president.

While the IMF sees the U.S. economy returning to pre-crisis levels at the end of this year, it may take Europe until the middle of 2022 to reach that point.

The recovery is fragile elsewhere too – factory activity in China grew at the slowest pace in five months in January, hit by a wave of domestic coronavirus infections, and in Japan fourth quarter growth slowed from the previous quarter with new lockdowns clouding the outlook.

“The initially hoped-for V-shaped recovery is now increasingly looking rather more like a long U-shaped recovery. That is why the stabilization measures in almost all G20 states have to be maintained in order to continue supporting the economy,” a G20 official said.

But while the richest economies can afford to stimulate an economic recovery by borrowing more on the market, poorer ones would benefit from being able to tap credit lines from the IMF — the global lender of last resort.

To give itself more firepower, the Fund proposed last year to increase its war chest by $500 billion in the IMF’s own currency called the Special Drawing Rights (SDR), but the idea was blocked by then U.S. President Donald Trump.

Scholz said the change of administration in Washington on Jan. 20 improved the prospects for more IMF resources. He pointed to a letter sent by U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen to G20 colleagues on Thursday, which he described as a positive sign also for efforts to reform global tax rules.

Civil society groups, religious leaders and some Democratic lawmakers in the U.S. Congress have called for a much larger allocation of IMF resources, of $3 trillion, but sources familiar with the matter said they viewed such a large move as unlikely for now.

The G20 may also agree to extend a suspension of debt servicing for poorest countries by another six months.

($1 = 0.8254 euros)

(Reporting by Michael Nienaber in Berlin, Jan Strupczewski in Brussels and Gavin Jones in Rome; Andrea Shalal and David Lawder in Washington; Editing by Daniel Wallis, Susan Fenton and Crispian Balmer)


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