Asia's most beautiful and exciting hotels celebrated at AHEAD design awards

Asia’s best designed hotels have been celebrated at an awards ceremony held in Singapore.

Winning design practices at the inaugural AHEAD Asia awards include Blu Water Studio, LTW Designworks and Tony Chi.

Entries were assessed on aesthetics, guest experience and commercial viability by a panel of industry and design leaders.

AHEAD – which stands for The Awards for Hospitality Experience and Design – is a new platform that has consolidated the European Hotel Design Awards and the Asia Hotel Design Awards to create a competition with a more global outlook.

Ceremonies celebrating excellent hospitality design in the Americas and the Middle East & Africa will also take place in 2017 and 2018. All the regional winners will then compete head-to-head to in each category during a Global Biennale in 2019.

The most successful hotel was Hoshinoya in Tokyo, which was designed by Azuma Architects. The new 17-storey property, which offers a modern take on the classic Japanese ryokan, won in the categories for urban hotel, new concept, and design of the year.

AHEAD Asia
The full list of AHEAD Asia winners, with comments from the judges:

Bar, Club or Lounge

The Akademi lobby bar, Katamama Hotel, Bali, designed by in Bali by Andra Matin and Takenouchi Webb.

The Akademi lobby bar

The judges applauded Akademi for reinventing the traditional lobby bar as a place for learning and meeting, as well as drinking.

Guestrooms

Akyra Manor Hotel, Chiang Mai, designed by Hyphen Architects and Varit Charoenveingvechki.

The Akyra Manor Hotel

Akya Manor Hotel was praised for its “clean lines, urban feel and interesting use of FF&E to deliver a unique indoor/outdoor guest experience.”

Hotel Renovation and Restoration

The Edison George Town, Penang, designed by Blu Water Studio.

The Edison George Town

‘Charming’, ‘beautiful’ and ‘authentic’ were just a few of the words the judges used to described the way Edison’s designers have respected a classic and original building, while injecting a new personality into it.

Landscaping and Outdoor Spaces

Keemala hotel, Phuket, with landscapes designed by Stone Design.

Keemala

The judges commented that the landscaping of Keemala has created truly memorable experiences for everyone who stays there. The natural way it integrates into its environment, with guestrooms nestled into the jungle surroundings, was considered respectful and restrained.

Lobby and Public Spaces

The Four Seasons Hotel, Seoul, designed by LTW Designworks.

The Four Seasons Hotel

This project was singled out for its sense of sanctuary, and the way it welcomes in its guests – a clever use of space with a strong sense of place. The judges commended Four Seasons Hotel for creating “A wonderful celebration of the heritage of Korea – modern and balanced”

Resort Hotel

Alila Anji, Huzhou, designed by Beijing CCI Architectural Design and HG-Design Studio.

Alila Anji

The judges praised the calm, quiet sensitivity of the design, marking ‘a radical departure for resort design in China’. ‘Timeless, modern and classic all at once’ was one judge’s summary.

Restaurant

Colony at The Ritz-Carlton Millenia, Singapore, designed by Tony Chi and DP Architects.

Colony at The Ritz-Carlton Millenia

‘Outstanding Execution – Tony Chi at his very best’ was one of the reactions to this popular Singapore restaurant. Several judges highlighted the way the design breaks down a challenging space to create a variety of dining experiences for its guests – “a different experience each time you visit”

Spa and Wellness

Spa at the Four Seasons Hotel, Seoul, designed by Heerim Architects

Four Seasons Hotel

The judges were impressed by the sheer scope of the spa and wellness facilities at the Four Seasons Seoul, from gym and pool through to the treatment areas, praising its design team for creating a “Tranquil and rejuvenating” environment for locals and international travellers alike.

Suite

The Ambassador Suite, Grand Hyatt, Hong Kong, designed by BAR Studio.

Grand Hyatt

‘Comfortable, warm, detailed and disciplined’ were just a few of judges’ comments on this luxurious suite at the Grand Hyatt, whose aspirational design offers a ‘definitive feeling of an upgrade’.

Urban Hotel

Hoshinoya, Tokyo, designed by Azuma Architects

Hoshinoya

Hoshinoya was a clear winner in its category. The judges praised its “Amazing concept and aesthetics”, combining architecture, landscape and interiors to create modern interpretation of the traditional Ryokan.

Visual Identity of the Year

COO Singapore

COO Singapore

COO Singapore was selected for the way its branding spoke clearly to its target audience of millennial travellers. The judges felt its clever use of graphics, artwork and signage has been combined with its innovative online presence ‘COO Connect’ allowing guests to link up with like-minded guests.

Outstanding Contribution Award

Hotel designer Kerry Hill

Hotel designer Kerry Hill

With a career in hotel design spanning some 40 years, Kerry Hill has been a pioneer of resort design across Asia and beyond. The judges of AHEAD Asia were delighted to honour his outstanding contribution to the industry, from early works such as the The Datai in Langkawi, and the Chedi Bandung, through to recent projects such as Aman Tokyo and COMO The Treasury Hotel in Perth, Australia.

The New Concept of the Year award

Hoshinoya, Tokyo, designed by Azuma Architects.

Hoshinoya

Asia Hotel Design of the Year

Hoshinoya, Tokyo, designed by Azuma Architects.

Hoshinoya

"The standard was exceptionally high across the board. The winners were selected for their exceptional design and its contribution to the guest experience in these outstanding hotel properties," said AHEAD Director Matt Turner.

The next AHEAD Awards ceremonies will be held on the following dates:

• AHEAD Americas – 28 June 2017, PAMM (Pérez Art Museum Miami)

• AHEAD MEA – 15 November 2017, W Hotel Al Habtoor City Dubai

• AHEAD Europe – 20 November 2017, Park Plaza Westminster Bridge London

hotel design  AHEAD  Asia  hospitality  architecture  Singapore 
Asia’s best designed hotels have been celebrated at an awards ceremony held in Singapore. Winning design practices at the inaugural AHEAD Asia awards include Blu Water Studio, LTW Designworks and Tony Chi. Entries were assessed on aesthetics, guest experience and commercial viability by a panel of industry and design leaders. AHEAD – which stands for The Awards for Hospitality Experience and Design – is a new platform that has consolidated
CLD,HHR,ARC,DES,DEV
Hoshinoya, Tokyo, designed by Azuma Architects / AHEAD
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The specialists in designing, developing and operating spa and wellness spaces.
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