Hamish Kilburn, Editor of Hotel Designs and lead judge for The Brit List Awards 2023, explores some of the key themes that were evident throughout this year’s campaign, as well as sharing the official highlights video from awards ceremony…
When I come to judge The Brit List Awards and, in tow, edit The Brit List, there’s always one theme, above others, that somehow finds the judging panel.
This year, while technology and sustainability were undoubtedly talking points, how the hotel design and hospitality communities’ have debuted new hotel brands, while at the same time boldly revamping existing hotels that have earned their ‘iconic’ status, grabbed our full attention – just like our award ceremony does for the hotel design community each year.
For many reasons, 2023 will go down in history, I believe, for being a comeback year for the British hospitality and hotel design industry. New openings included, but were not limited to, 1 Hotel Mayfair, Raffles London at The OWO, The Peninsula London, Ember Locke Kensington, Ruby Zoe and art’otel London Battersea Power Station.
Meanwhile, renovations in existing hotels came in thick and fast, which some would argue was territory being marked over new hospitality brands that were preparing to arrive in the same neighbourhoods.
Outside the UK, British designers and architects continued to shape tomorrow’s hospitality scene – from the arrival of Park Hyatt in Jakarta, The Ned in Doha to the revamp of Anantara Nice Plaza Hotel and the opening of The Hoxton, Brussels.
While it might be safe to say that new standards have indeed been set by this year’s leading interior designers, architects and hoteliers who have been profiled in The Brit List 2023, I have learned in my five-year editorship that there is no time to pause – blink and you’ll miss something.
Looking ahead, therefore, to what the British hotel design community is currently working on, with the arrival of Rosewood The Chancery, Escapade Silverstone, Treehouse Manchester, yet more The Other House properties, Mandarin Oriental Vienna, a plethora of new hotels in Saudi Arabia as well as renovations and arrivals in all pockets of the world, this is clearly just start of yet another thrilling chapter.
Main image credit: Mel Yates / Hotel Designs