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Published:  23 July, 2008

Languedoc producer and ngociant Grard Bertrand has purchased Domaine de l'Hospitalet, one of the most prestigious domaines in the area, for an undisclosed sum. Bertrand has bought the domaine, which has 52 hectares (ha) in the Coteaux du Languedoc sub-appellation of La Clape, from previous shareholders UCCOAR and the Ribourel family. Jacques Ribourel has retained seven hectares of vines and a house on the property. Bertrand told Harpers, My company is at a key point in its development, so when Jacques Ribourel contacted me about Domaine de l'Hospitalet, I was immediately interested.' Les Vins de Prestige, Bertrand's headquarters, will relocate to the domaine, which has a hotel complex, 750 hectares of garrigue, a vinification and ageing cellar, several museums, a craft centre and a public tasting room. Ribourel is a visionary, the first to develop the idea of combining wine and tourism in the Languedoc,' said Bertrand. The company's vineyard holdings now extend to 250ha: 110ha in Corbires, 50ha in Minervois, 40ha in Vin de Pays d'Oc and 52ha in La Clape. From its own holdings, Les Vins de Prestige Grard Bertrand produces 1.2 million bottles per year. It has contracts with 40 growers and ten co-operatives, producing a further three million bottles of wine. Domaine de l'Hospitalet will enable us to reinforce our position in the fine wine sector,' Bertrand commented, which is important for our image and recognition in the marketplace.'