Learning and winners galore at WIN WAN Live in London's Courthouse Hotel

Alison Carter
31 Oct 2019

The 2019 WIN Awards winners were announced on 24 October as part of a day of inspiring and informative panel discussions and networking in London’s Courthouse Hotel.

The judges were impressed with the high calibre and quality of entries, as well the diversity and global contribution to the competition, noting new and original approaches to design, materials and structure. 

They were keen to see in entries, “creative environments that promote wellbeing causes as well as consistency and functionality” and noted key trends amongst entrants such as open ceilings and the use of vintage furniture.  

Judges highlighted the challenges of measuring sustainability within the entries, expressing the difficulty of judging long planned projects against the present cultural context and ongoing change in environmental priority focus. 

Keynote speaker Michael Pawlyn, Founder of Exploration Architecture, opened the afternoon of panel discussions by explaining the need to shift from sustainable to regenerative methods to try to manage the effects of climate crisis.  He detailed how biology can influence and used in designs and the effect this would have on a broader scale. “The answer to ultimate intergenerational design is biomimicry, learning from imitations in biology and changing it in human needs,” he confirmed.

How to adapt interiors for changing needs, incorporating sustainability, looking after the wellbeing of those using different spaces and how to use creativity in the age of environmental crisis were other subjects put under the panels’ spotlight.  

The importance of sustainable and ethical responsibility throughout the design and production of facades and the all important fire and safety regulations were discussed by Mike Heppell, CEO and Christi Dunkley, Head of Market Development from Longboard, WAN Awards 2019 Headline sponsor. 

Trends and insights in global hospitality and the need to create uniqueness and brand identity was also explored.  Oliver Salway, Owner of Softroom, citing his work with the Virgin Group, offered the advice of not overwhelming a project with branding, “I didn’t use any red, just embodied the Virgin spirit.”

The exhibition of spectacular worldwide interiors from all shortlisted WIN Awards entries meant that both well-established and up and coming companies were able to showcase their work effectively.  

As a group the judges were keen to stress the importance of the WIN Awards as a scheme that reflects the diversity and global contribution that interior design brings. “The awards bring international exposure and give a platform to designs that wouldn’t necessarily be recognised. It has been extremely interesting to analyse design and cultural differences between different countries and explore global developments in the industry.” 

The full list of WIN Awards winners can be found here.

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