The town at the heart of the vineyards and the history of Champagne
Villes du Champagne Villes du Champagne

Aÿ is one of just four French municipalities with the distinctive ÿ in its name (along with Faÿ-lès-NemoursMoÿ-de-l'Aisne and L'Haÿ-les-Roses). However, this linguistic point of interest is not the district’s claim to fame. Boasting a prime location at the heart of the historic Champagne hillsides, Aÿ is both a key witness and player (so to speak) in Champagne’s history, both in the past and going forward into the future.

Located between the Marne-Rhine Canal and the historic hillsides (part of the Champagne Hillsides, Houses and Cellars included on UNESCO's World Heritage List), along with Reims and Épernay, Aÿ is one of the main historic Champagne production centres. With some 40% of the district covered by vines, the Champagne economy is of crucial importance. 

On the hillsides overlooking the town, ventilation shafts resembling chimneys protrude between the vines, indicating the presence of cellars, often higher up the hillside than the Champagne Houses that own them, which are located lower down. This is why owners sometimes say they are “going up” to the cellar!

Aÿ has also played a key role in Champagne history since the village was the epicentre of the winegrowers’ revolt in 1911, with several Champagne Houses on Boulevard du Nord set on fire during the resulting disturbances. 


The area has also played and continues to play an important role in the development of the cooperative movement: established in 1929 at the corner of Rue Jeanson and Boulevard du Nord, is COGEVI (General Cooperative of Winegrowers). Founded in 1921, it is now the oldest operating Champagne cooperative and is an archetypal example of the evolution of wine cooperatives. 

Still on Rue Jeanson, the Villa Bissinger is dedicated to Champagne wine awareness, and incorporates a human and social science research centre.

Finally, Le Pressoir, a Champagne Wines Sensory Interpretation Centre, is due to open soon on the former 19th century grape-pressing site built by the Pommery Champagne House



Mairie (Town Hall), place Henri-Martin, 51160 Aÿ-Champagne



Village Ay
The place where Champagne was born
Les circuits des cadoles des Riceys
Grauves panoramic viewpoint
Les Riceys panoramic viewpoint
Château-Thierry American Monument
Leboeuf Champagne House, known as the Pressoir Henri IV
Battles of the Marne Memorial (1914-1918) in Dormans
Hautvillers Abbey (in Hautvillers)
Distant horizons
Outstanding built heritage along its entire length
A bird's eye view of the town and hillsides
Philipponnat Champagne House (Mareuil-sur-Aÿ)
Billecart-Salmon Champagne House (Mareuil-sur-Aÿ)
Château de Montebello (Mareuil-sur-Aÿ)
Hôtel Guyot (now the Maison Belle Époque)
The Sainte-Hélène press house in Hautvillers
Vranken-Pommery Champagne House (Reims)
Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin Champagne House (Reims)
Moët & Chandon Champagne House (Épernay)

G.H. Martel & Co Champagne House (Reims)
Bollinger Champagne House (Aÿ)
Coopérative Générale des Vignerons – COGEVI (Aÿ-Champagne)
Cité-jardin du Chemin Vert (Reims)
Mission Coteaux, Maisons et caved de Champagne

Mission Coteaux, Maisons et caves de champagne C/O, Agence d'urbanisme de Reims, Place des droits de l'homme CS 90 000 51084 Reims CEDEX FRANCE

+33 (0)3 26 77 42 89

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