Adding an underground cellar in the UK

Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc – keeping a bottle (or ten or a hundred...) of your favourite wine at hand has never been easier. Read on for our top tips on creating your very own custom made, state of the art wine cellar.

A wine storage place
ARTICLE Stephanie Matheson

Whether you’re a long-time wine connoisseur or an amateur wine lover, there’s nothing like having a dedicated space for your collection. It will allow you to store and age your wine, perhaps even start an investment, and will also beautifully display or showcase the array of fine bottles, which can be a design feature in itself. 
Climate control is the key aspect of a wine cellar, so that temperature and humidity are always at their optimum. There are many different systems available on the market today, and the best solution for you will depend on your property, the wine cellar’s location and size, and your collection. Climate control techniques can use ducted coolers, non-ducted systems or water-cooled systems that could be linked to an under floor heating system. 
Having a separate room to house your wines is the ultimate ideal. There is much to consider, including climate control automation, flooring, shelving, wall coverings, lighting and backlighting, and more. To create the right mood, ambience LED lighting is a common choice here as this type of lighting doesn’t heat up and hence doesn’t affect the wine storage climate. Make sure you include the full range of interior design options in your planning phase including colour schemes, any artwork you wish to display, and accessories that will go with your wine space such as glassware.
Options for a wine room range from the fully kitted out wine cellars through to walk-in spaces that can be built into part of a room. This area can be divided off by an insulated wall. It could even be enclosed by a three or four sided frameless glass enclosure. Corner arrangements with curved glass or a square glass frame are also possible. It’s a stylish way to add a special wine space.
An underground wine cellar with chairs and table
Going underground and using basement spaces is becoming more and more popular all over the UK and especially in London. Underground wine cellars are not just a great way of storing wine, they can also include a lavish entertainment area complete with a bar for wine tasting. To make the most of your wine cellar and provide your guests with an unforgettable degustation experience comfortable seats and ambient lighting add the final touches. Most of all, your collection will speak for itself, however, beautifully presented in your chosen décor. 
Where your basement space is not sufficient to create an underground wine cellar, or your house does not have a basement, there are many other ways of incorporating climate controlled wine storage into your home. A ‘wine wall’ is a great option. Wine walls or wine storage cabinets can make excellent use of narrow spaces along a basement wall, corridors or under the stairs. They could also add a stunning statement piece of ‘fine wine art’ to your kitchen with glass display cases complete with climate control and feature lighting in place. It’s both a safe and stylish way to showcase your wine collection and glam up otherwise unused wall space.
If space or budget is very limited, wine storage units or cubes can be built into your kitchen space, pantry or other storage areas. A simple wine fridge or a set of fridges is also a good, low hassle way of providing a dedicated space for wine in your home, although long-term storage of fine wines would not be an option here.
A dedicated wine space in the naturally cooler climate of a basement usually provides the safest place of aging and storing wine, and the simple act of descending down some stairs into a true wine ‘cellar’ also offers the best wine tasting experience. A luxury wine cellar, when done well, adds a real wow-factor to your home and can also increase the value of your house.

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