European Hotel Design Awards announces 2012 winners

Nine of Europe’s notable hotels claimed top honors at the European Hotel Design Awards. This international celebration acknowledges the “passion and vision of the architects, designers and developers of Europe’s most recently completed and outstanding hotel projects.”

The judging panel included chair of the judges Simon Ford of InterContinental Hotels Group, Jeremy Blake of Purcell Miller Tritton, Christoph Hoffman of 25Hours Hotel Group and Celia Geyer of Hilton Worldwide.

Categories included new build; bedrooms and bathrooms; café, bar, nightclub & lounge; conversion of an existing building to hotel use and spa, health & leisure facilities. The shortlisted entries hailed from all over Europe including Italy, Spain, Germany, Norway, Switzerland, Turkey and Croatia.

The award for the “conversion and/or extension of an existing hotel building” was won by Hotel Valentinerhof, St Valentin, Italy, as entered by noa. Valentinerhof is an extension to an existing traditional hotel in the South Tyrol alpine region of Italy, with the building combining what was said to be “a respect for place and local materials with a true desire to bring a sense of joy and celebration of the rural setting whilst delivering everything that is expected of a contemporary hotel experience.”

The “conversion of an existing non-hotel building to hotel use” was won by The Mirror Hotel, Barcelona, Spain, entered by GCA Architects. The property is a conversion of an old office block in Barcelona, now with room plans that give all the front rooms a street view, and a “thoughtful approach” to lighting, decoration and artwork.

The award for “new build” was won by Hotel Lone, Rovinj, Croatia, as entered by Maistra. The property on the Istrian coastline in Croatia boasts a bold statement that worked well with the landscape.

The award for the “conversion and/or extension of an existing hotel building” was won by Hotel Valentinerhof, as entered by noa


The award for “lobby and public areas” was won by Superbude St Pauli, Hamburg, Germany, entered by Dreimeta. The property is said to have used provocatively commonplace materials to provide a multi-functional space.

The winner for “cafe, bar or all day dining” was Beau-Rivage Palace, BaR, Lausanne, Switzerland, entered by Wilsdon Design Associates. The property was significant remodeled with the integration of antique tapestries with modern design and furnishings.

The “best restaurant” was won by Sur Mesure Par Thierry Marx, Mandarin Oriental, Paris, France, as entered by Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group. The décor is said to evoke the haute couture district of Paris with the same level detail and use of fabrics applied in the fashion houses.

For “bedrooms and bathrooms”, the winner was Superbude St Pauli, Hamburg, Germany, entered by Dreimeta. The rooms of the property boast an eclectic mix or reused materials and objects.

The winner for “best suite” was won by The Whitehall Penthouse Suite, Corinthia Hotel, London, England, entered by GA Design International. The property is said to reflect an old English charm with a contemporary interpretation.

Winner for “spa, health and leisure facilities” was The Spa, Mandarin Oriental, Paris, France, entered by SM Design and Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group. This spa has a number of unique offerings such as the poolside butterfly animation.

The “sustainable design award” was won by Starhotels E.c.h.o, Milan, Italy, entered by Andrea Auletta Interior Design. The property has energy saving offerings that highlight the desire to reuse materials, source locally and bring nature into the public areas.

The winner for the European hotel design of the year award was Superbude St Pauli, Hamburg, Germany.

Meanwhile, Claus Sendlinger, founder & CEO, design Hotels, was given a special award for his “outstanding contribution”. In 1991, Sendlinger laid the foundation for Design Hotels with Travel Trends, a label providing high-end lifestyle vacations. In 1993, he co-founded Design Hotels Inc. in Sausilito, California, which began as a marketing agency for hotels and later incorporated a reservations system.

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