Winners of The Brit List Awards 2023 announced

The winners of 12 individual categories, including Interior Designer of the Year, Architect of the Year and Hotelier of the Year, were crowned last night at The Brit List Awards 2023. Editor Hamish Kilburn writes…

The Brit List Awards 2023 winners

For six years, The Brit List Awards has been championing the best in British – and international – hotel design and hospitality. On November 1 at Circa Embankment, the 2023 campaign came to a colourful climax when this year’s winners were announced.

Following the unveiling of more than 150 shortlisted finalists, selected across 12 categories, The Brit List Awards 2023 gave a lively performance for this year’s awards ceremony. As well as dramatically crowning 12 individual winners, the team at Hotel Designs officially published The Brit List 2023, a publication that includes the full profiles of the top 75 interior designers, architects and hoteliers in Britain.

After the hefty publication was released, it was time to announce the individual winners. And they are…


Interior Designer of the Year winner

Winner: Jessica Morrison, Senior Associate, G.A Design | Project: 1 Hotel Mayfair
Highly Commended: Charlie North, Vice President of Interior Design, Ennismore | Project: The Hoxton, Brussels

1 Hotel Mayfair opened a few months ago to rave reviews – it is unlike anything Mayfair has seen before. The hotel shelters a multi-layered, sensory enriching hospitality experience that transports guests away from the polluted noise of the capital and into a cosy sanctuary, surrounded by earthy materials and deep design narratives. Congratulations Jessica Morrison who led the design of this project with her team at G.A Design.


Architect of the Year - The Brit List Awards 2023

Winner: Geoff Hull, Director, EPR Architects | Project: The OWO
Highly Commended: Lorraine Stoutt Griffith, director, Twelve Architects | Project: Escapade Silverstone

This year, the judges were on the edge of their seats as they read Geoff Hull’s entry, which climaxed with the completion of The Old War Office, one of London’s most complex architectural and structural hospitality projects – eight years in the making – that now shelters Raffles’ debut London hotel as well as private residences and no fewer than nine restaurants and three bars, all of which had different interior design studios working on them. Congratulations Geoff Hull and his whole team at EPR Architects.


Hotelier of the Year - Winner The Brit List Awards 2023

Winner: Timothy Griffin, Co-Founder, LEVEN
Highly Commended: Eljesa Saciri, General Manager, The Zetter Townhouse, Marylebone

Timothy Griffin, the former Managing Director for North America for Ennismore, along with two of his former colleagues (PJ Kenny and Shanthan Balakrishnan), set out to challenge the status quo. The three visionaries came together to create new hospitality experiences under Wellbrook Hospitality, and LEVEN was born.

LEVEN Manchester, if you are not familiar with it, opened in 2021 and, has since, become a leading lifestyle hotel experience in the city. Griffin and his team have not been afraid to take risks, launching the brand’s second hotel in the Metaverse. We are excited to see what comes next from the man who is always smiling and who, with his team, is encouraging the British hospitality industry to think beyond possibilities. Congratulations, Tim Griffin and his entire team at LEVEN and Wellbrook Hospitality.


The Brit List Awards Winner - Public Area of the Year

Winner: Atelier Ochre & House of Dré | Project: Ember Locke Kensington
Highly Commended: G.A Group | Project: 1 Hotel Mayfair

What makes this win truly exceptional is the lack of experience both Atelior Orchre and House of Dré had in the hotel design arena prior to winning this project, to bring East London vibes of Locke to West London. The aim from Locke was to take over and transforming a tired and dated hotel with a hospitality concept that was embraced by the local community as well as modern travellers. And this meant creating a punchy public area that could stand the test of time and demands from those using its space.


Lighting Scheme of the Year - The Brit List Awards 2023

Winner: Visual Energy | Project: 1 Hotel Mayfair
Highly Commended: Elektra Lighting | Project: Virgin Hotels Edinburgh

The judges described the lighting design inside 1 Hotel Mayfair as both innovative and inviting. What sets it apart is the designers’ skilled use of indirect lighting on natural materials, bringing out their best features. This lighting doesn’t just brighten a room; it creates a warm and homely feel. Congratulations, Visual Energy and the whole team who were involved in creating 1 Hotel Mayfair.


Hotel Concept of the Year - Winner

Winner: Kirstin Fordyce| Project: The Sorting Room
Highly Commended: Buckley Gray Yeoman | Project: The Hertford

It’s worth noting that Kirstin Fordyce originally entered in the Rising Star category, but the judges felt that her entry was so strong, showing so much research into the potential of existing buildings, that it deserved to be a contender in the Hotel Concept of the Year category. The Sorting Room concept is a boutique hotel that occupies the former Post Office building in the heart of Dundee. The hotel’s interior design is a reflection of the building’s fascinating history within the UK postal system. The guest’s user journey experience is inspired by the journey of a letter and the hidden operations within the postal service. Congratulations Kirstin Fordyce.


Best in British Product Design Winner

Winner: Richard Stone, represented by Artiq | Product: Sculpture commissioned for The OWO
Highly Commended: Phillip Watts Design | Product: Starburst

Richard Stone is an established British artist and maker whose practice explores stillness and movement. Reconfiguring historical themes in art, he urges reflection on the current moment while raising the possibility of a reflexive transcendence.

Art consultancy, Artiq, had the pleasure of discovering Stone when searching for London-based makers ahead of developing an art collection for key areas of The OWO. Built on the historic royal site of Whitehall Palace and witness to world-shaping events of the 20th century, Britain’s Old War Office is opening this summer with the UK’s first Raffles Hotel, which with the help of Artiq, commissioned eight sculptures by Stone, now installed in the unique Corner Suites.


Best-in-Tech---Winner The Brit List Awards 2023

Winner: LEVEN | Project: LEVENverse
Highly Commended: Reevela

The judges were intrigued how a brand that launched its first hotel to be so tactile and residential in style could then open its next hotel in the metaverse. Pioneering hospitality in the Metaverse, LEVENverse is one of the first hotels in this arena, embracing the potential of this emerging digital space. By being an early adopter, LEVEN has clearly demonstrated its forward-thinking approach and appetite to explore new technological frontiers.



Winner: Naturalmat
Highly Commended: Heckfield Place

Naturalmat is not only approaching its business in a sustainable and healthy manner but the team, led by Mark Tremlett, are also engaged in charitable partnerships. And this year, Naturalmat became a B-Corp company that truly embodies the three pillars of ‘ESG’.


Rising-Star - Winner

Winner: Oscar Brookes, Junior Interior Designer, LXA Projects
Highly Commended: Isabella Johns, Mid-Weight Designer, David Collins Studio

Based on the entry, the judges really felt Oscar Brookes’ love and passion for what he does at LXA. He gets involved in many aspects of the project. In such a short period of his carrier Brookes has shown hunger to learn. “Unfortunately,” added one of the judges, “nowadays these are very rare qualities.”



Winner: Great Plains Conservation | Project: Sitatunga Private Island
Highly Commended: Experimental Group

This award win is testament to the tireless work that both Beverly and Dereck Joubert do. The wildlife photographers and videographers for National Geographic raise awareness around wildlife conservation though luxury safari hospitality– and just being, to be honest, really good and pure human beings. I have spoken to their team, and I have heard incredible stories, including Beverly being attacked by a buffalo, and while fighting for her life in hospital she set up a charity to help the women who were looking after her.

Most recently, Great Plains Conservation, has opened their latest camp, Sitatunga Private Island in Botswana


Outstanding Contribution to the Hospitality Industry -

Winner: Michael Bonsor, Managing Director, Rosewood London

Hotel Designs’ decision to name Michael Bonsor this year’s winner came from looking back as well as focusing on the future. This year marks Rosewood London’s 10th year. It is a milestone to celebrate. It’s remarkable that throughout this time, which feels like a minute to be honest, the hotel has not just remained relevant, it has also remained leading with its socially driven initiatives and collaborations and solid leadership. I have had the pleasure to speak to many people who do and have worked with Bonsor over the years, and every person I have spoken to has said how refreshing and inspiring Bonsor’s leadership style is.

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Main image credit: Hotel Designs / The Brit List Awards 2023