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Unesco listing

Unesco listing


The UNESCO world heritage, also known as the world heritage of humanity, is a list drawn up by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation. To feature on this list, sites must possess outstanding universal value. The aim is to preserve and pass on this heritage to future generations.

20 years ago, in 1999, Saint-Émilion and its vineyards were listed as a UNESCO world heritage site, bringing worldwide recognition to this winegrowing area. It was the first time on the planet that a viticultural landscape had been listed in this way.

With this title, UNESCO distinguished a remarkable example of historical culture that is intact and still in activity. It also flagged a spectacular architectural legacy and how urban development has blended in so perfectly with its landscape, while remaing true to its ancestral history.

This supreme recognition therefore pays tribute to the varied facets of the work of Man and its interaction with nature.


The impact of their work is just as perceptible in the quality of their wines as in the landscapes and soils that they strive to protect.
This recognition also rewards the local people for watching over and taking care of their town and its former jurisdiction (Saint-Émilion, Saint-Christophe des Bardes, Saint-Etienne de Lisse, Saint-Hippolyte, Saint-Laurent des Combes, Saint-Pey d’Armens, Saint-Sulpice de Faleyrens and Vignonet) for centuries and highlights the long interaction between Man and the surrounding countryside.

Today, the same meticulous attention is paid: any change to the structure of the soil or planting of a plot must be approved by a committee made up of State representatives, the INAO quality regulation agency, architects from the Bâtiments de France heritage protection agency and the Saint-Émilion Wine Council. This measure was implemented to further protect these internationally renowned vineyards and the unquestioned beauty of the historical town.


Unesco listing

The historic context of the listing

The masterpiece fashioned by time and Man over the centuries: a tale of ancestral history whose pace quickened in the 20th century, culminating with its listing as a World Heritage site.

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Handing the genius down

When people do their utmost to manage, sustain and pass on this outstanding legacy to future generations.

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Unesco listing

The world heritage of humanity

Jointly chaired by the Saint-Émilion Wine Council, the association manages this outstanding heritage bringing it to the attention of all audiences on behalf of the eight villages in the Jurisdiction of Saint-Émilion.

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