Sleep Bar 2013 wins “Best Pop-up Bar” at the Restaurant & Bar Design Awards 2014

    150 150 Daniel Fountain
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    Every year a much anticipated highlight of Sleep, Europe’s leading hotel design and development event, is a one-of-a kind, imaginatively designed Sleep Bar that is a centrepiece and attraction for all who attend. The latest in the series has just reached a new level of acclaim by winning “Best Pop up Bar” at the Restaurant & Bar Design Awards 2014.This year’s bar, a dramatic sculptural form crafted from re-purposed washbasins, was created by a team of leading hospitality experts including interior design studio Nous Design, contractors Willmott Dixon and bathroom ceramics manufacturer Laufen Bathrooms, long-time exhibitor at Sleep.

    Pioneering artist Vlad Tenu created the innovative aluminium wall sculpture, while suppliers and sponsors Megaman, Interface, Tektura, Soho Myriad, Tacchini, and Ipea UK also supported the installation. Each member of the team illustrated exceptional creativity and commitment to the project. Nir Gilad, Creative Director of Nous Design, confirms the studio is extremely honoured to be recognised with this prestigious international award and shares his insights into the winning concept. “The Sleep Bar was created as a gathering space inspired by nature, an environment to which one can escape.

    The bar itself represents a lake, with the aluminium trellis backdrop suggesting a forest and the pendant lights an allusion to clouds. Together, these elements form a seamless, dreamlike ambience.”

    The all-white installation is a simple play between defined geometric forms and abstract structures. With an expanse of over 12 metres, the organic wall sculpture behind the bar is made from 1854 pressed aluminium triangles which appear to “grow” from the floor and surround the lounge – yet the components weigh only 200 kg altogether. In contrast, the clean-lined, fully operational bar, which the team believes is the first of its kind, comes in at 1.8 tons. Designed to showcase Laufen’s bathroom products, its “V” shape is constructed from 64 ceramic shelves and washbasins. Concealed lights on each shelf create a linear, floating appearance. The bar’s adjustable top enables new styles of washbasins to be displayed as they are launched, and the insulating properties of the ceramic material means the coldness of the ice wells in the counter is not transferred to the shelves below.

    “The construction of the ceramic bar was riddled with technical challenges which the Laufen team successfully resolved,” Nir explains. “It was only through the dedication and positive thinking of the Nous Design team, organisers, sponsors and suppliers that this venture became possible. We thank all the people who spent days and nights in front of their computers, in workshops and at the installation site to bring our vision to life, and are grateful for the overwhelming encouragement we’ve received from our friends, clients, operators and the design community.”

    An international panel of esteemed design experts judged the competition, including distinguished landscape and garden designer Andy Sturgeon who called the Sleep Bar “simple yet dramatic.”

    Kali Nicholson, Brand Director of Sleep, says “We were delighted to have such an amazing bar for the Great and the Good of the hospitality design industry to enjoy at Sleep last year and are thrilled it continues to be recognised and celebrated, now as award-winning, almost 10 months later.”

    The Sleep 2014 Conference, together with the Sleep Set guestroom design competition and the Sleep Exhibition, will be held on the 26th and 27th November at the Business Design Centre in Islington, London. A late-night opening running until 8pm on Wednesday, November 26th will include a cocktail hour from 6-7pm at the Sleep Bar, which this year is being designed by Stylt Trampoli. Drawing upon the Business Design Centre’s past life as the Royal Agricultural Hall, the studio aims to create a fresh, vibrant place of respite from the high-energy exhibition and conference. For more information and to register for complementary passes visit:

    The show is the official event partner of the European Hotel Design Awards which will culminate in a dinner on the evening of 25 November when the winners will be announced in a glittering ceremony at Park Plaza Westminster Bridge in London.

    Daniel Fountain / 03.10.2014

    Editor, Hotel Designs


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