AHEAD Europe 2019 Winners Announced


AHEAD, The Awards for Hospitality Experience and Design, announced its Europe winners yesterday at the brand’s largest attended ceremony to date. 1100 hoteliers, architects and designers joined the celebrations at Battersea Evolution, which was overhauled to reflect a Brooklyn block party setting. The big winner of the night was Palazzo Daniele, taking home the Guestrooms and the AHEAD Europe Hotel of the Year awards, the latter presented by Global Founder Sponsor, GROHE. Other winners included: Mollie’s Motel & Diner, Buckland, for Hotel Newbuild; Amerikalinjen, Oslo, for Visual Identity; and another Norwegian project, Manshausen 2.0 for Lodges, Cabins & Tented Camps – the newest category to AHEAD Europe.

Bar, Club or Lounge

Soho House Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Situated in the historic ‘Bungehuis’ building, Soho House created a casual yet exciting space which reflects Amsterdam’s vibrant and diverse culture, while staying true to the building’s DNA. Judges said: “there is a real sense of place throughout which perfectly matches the building’s architecture”.

Event Spaces

Cinema Paradiso at PURO Lódź, Poland

The city of Lódź is home to one of the oldest film schools in the world, so the design firm Superfutures took this at their inspiration when designing the hotel’s event space, successfully creating a multifunctional space fit for conferences, private events and film screenings.


Palazzo Daniele, Gagliano del Capo, Italy

Palazzo Daniele marries 19th century luxury with chic minimalism across the entire nine key hotel. Each room has been stripped back as much as possible, without compromising the building’s structural integrity, and has been cleverly furnished to draw attention to furnishings and motifs ‘that blur the lines between art and function’, according to our judges.

Hotel Conversion

The Langley, Iver, England

The Langley’s conversion has seen a majestic stately home restored to its former glory, ensuring the Grade II-listed status was honoured while creating an opulent country retreat with a high-end residential feel.

Hotel Newbuild

Mollie’s Motel & Diner, Buckland, England

Mollie’s Motel & Diner is the latest concept by Soho House & Co. This 1950s styled American motel, diner and drive-thru was described by judges as “an innovative concept of roadside dining that has become a local darling - a design based on quality and simplicity which deserves to be seen in many more locations”.

Hotel Renovation & Restoration

Heckfield Place, Hampshire, England

Heckfield Place, a charming Grade II-listed Georgian house originally built in the 18th century, has been carefully reimagined and thoughtfully restored by architects Spratley & Partners in collaboration with interior designers bwt London. The 46-bedroom estate is also home to a working farm, centred on sustainability and biodynamic farming principles.

Landscaping & Outdoor Spaces

Can Bordoy Grand House & Garden, Palma, Mallorca

Can Bordoy’s garden is host to over 70 different plant species, and has been mindfully landscaped to offer additional privacy for hotel guests. It is also home to a Lledoner (European Hackberry) tree, which is seen as a symbol of welcome in Mallorcan homes.

Lobby & Public Spaces

Belmond Cadogan Hotel, London, England

Originally built in 1887, Belmond Cadogan Hotel has been a storied character in Kensington & Chelsea’s heritage. Judges congratulated G.A Group’s “clever reworking of the old entrance to make to make it feel “light, airy and inviting”.

Lodges, Cabins & Tented Camps

Manshausen 2.0, Manshausen Island, Norway

Set within a 55-acre private island, Manshausen 2.0 is a collection of contemporary and sustainable cabins built along the existing topography and constructed mostly of wood. The judges applauded the “sustainable design approach and striking setting”.

Resort Hotel

The Retreat at Blue Lagoon Iceland, Grindavik, Iceland

Built directly into an 800-year-old lava flow in the heart of the Reykjanes UNESCO Global Geopark, the Retreat at Blue Lagoon encompasses a subterranean spa, geothermal lagoon, a traditional Icelandic restaurant, and a 62-suite luxury hotel encircled by the Blue Lagoon’s mineral-rich waters.


NENI at 25hours Hotel Terminus Nord, Paris, France

Dreimeta designed NENI with women in mind. The colours are softer and the art in this space features more feminine themes: think Cosy lounge chairs upholstered with lush velvet in pastel tones, pink marble and copper paired with oak parquet flooring and colourful vintage kilims with floral motifs.

Spa & Wellness

Euphoria Retreat, Mystras, Greece

The Euphoria Spa is the heart of the Euphoria Retreat. The building is carved into the base of a mountain, set between between town and forest. Judges agreed that the spa was “executed in exemplary fashion to meet the varied health needs of its guests.”


Dexamenes Seaside Hotel, Kourouta, Greece

Dexamenes Seaside Hotel is constructed from derelict, industrial building once part of an abandoned wine factory that had been left untouched since the 1920’s. The judges described the project as ‘the height of unpretentious luxury’.


Ponant Le Champlain

Le Champlain, named after famous explorer Samuel de Champlain, is the second of a fleet of six new vessels from Ponant. The design expresses its unique character and atmosphere by adopting naturally soft tones with shades of celadon green, which form a counterpoint to the roughness of some materials and graphic patterns.

Visual Identity

Amerikalinjen Oslo, Norway

Amerikalinjen once housed the Norwegian American Line offices which were responsible for transporting Norwegian citizens across the Atlantic to America. It is now home to boutique hotel, Amerikalinjen, where themes of travel and navigation are woven throughout the hotel’s character.

New Concept

The Audo, Copenhagen, Denmark

Copenhagen’s answer to a hotel that truly offers everything, The Audo is a new hybrid model providing hotel rooms, restaurants, cafes, a concept store, material library, and creative and event space.

Outstanding Contribution

Christoph Hoffmann, 25hours Hotel Company

Hoffmann founded 25hours Hotel Company in 2005 together with his partners, Kai Hollmann, Ardi Goldman and Stephan Gerhard. Since then he has led the group from a single property in Hamburg to a global portfolio of 13 hotels. With help from hospitality heavyweight AccorHotels 25hours has developments in Florence and Dubai slated for 2020, and Copenhagen in 2021.

AHEAD Europe Hotel of the Year

Palazzo Daniele, Gagliano del Capo, Italy

The inspiration behind Palazzo Daniele was ‘absence’. GS Collection and Palomba Serafini Associati have successfully transformed the property from a 158 year old aristocratic palazzo to an intimate 9-bedroom hotel “where the ancient and ultra-modern seamlessly coexist.”

Dezeen x AHEAD Europe Judges' Interviews
Dezeen talk to Stefan Rier from noa*, Geraldine Dohogne from Zannier Hotels, and Nathan Hutchins from Muza Lab about this year's hospitality trends and key projects from the shortlist.