Awards honour the best architecture, interiors and designs of 2020

Prestigious Dezeen Awards show off the world’s best architecture, interiors and designs – including magical treetop cycle path and a bar with its own insect collection

  • The Dezeen Awards 2020 identifies the ‘most outstanding work’ in architecture, interiors and design 
  • The winning buildings and design projects were picked by a jury, which sifted through 4,300 global entries
  • They included a striking glasshouse in Czechia and a hotel in the Chinese mountains that’s also a bookstore

 It’s like a catwalk for the construction industry.

The prestigious Dezeen Awards 2020, run by architecture and design website Dezeen and now in its third year, took place in a series of online ceremonies this week. 

The awards identify ‘the world’s best architecture, interiors and design’, as well as the studios, architects and designers producing ‘the most outstanding work’. A jury comprising a ‘panel of international architects, designers and academics’ picked the winners after the contest received 4,300 entries from more than 80 countries.

And the winning projects are simply stunning. 

They include a striking glasshouse, a magical cycle path that winds around the treetops, a capsule hotel that doubles as a library and a bookstore, and a swanky bar that boasts an amber insect collection.

Scroll down to see MailOnline Travel’s pick of some of the incredible winners…

BEST ARCHITECTURE PROJECT AND BEST RURAL BUILDING – THE RED ROOF BY TAA DESIGN: Located in Quang Ngai, Vietnam, the Red Roof has been created on the rooftop of a house, which has been transformed with the installation of stepped planters and red plaster and tiles. According to Dezeen, TAA Studio has ‘created multi-purpose courtyards and agricultural gardens interwoven into the space from the ground floor to the roof, in keeping with the lifestyle of the local people’

BEST BUSINESS BUILDING – LASVIT HEADQUARTERS BY OV ARCHITEKTI: This translucent glasshouse is the headquarters of  glass company Lasvit and is located in Novy Bor, northern Czechia. Leon Jakimic, president of Lasvit, told Dezeen: ‘The Glass House is a kind of great lamp for the whole town and is a symbol of the rejuvenation and the new-found self-esteem of glassmaking in this region’ 

BEST CIVIC BUILDING – NOOR E MOBIN PRIMARY SCHOOL BY FEA STUDIO:  An ‘educational neighbourhood for children’ is how Dezeen describes this stunning new school in Iran. It added that ‘streets and alleyways’, designed for ‘building up friendships and playing games’, connect the buildings 

BEST CULTURAL BUILDING – PHOENIX CENTRAL PARK BY DURBACH BLOCK JAGGERS ARCHITECTS AND JOHN WARDLE ARCHITECTS: This award-winning construction, located in Sydney, consists of two separate spaces – a gallery and a performance area – designed by two separate architecture firms. But Dezeen pointed out: ‘A continuous external skin of brickwork encloses everything – a skin that was designed by both architects working together’ 

BEST HOSPITALITY BUILDING – THE TIING BY NIC BRUNSDON: This 14-room boutique hotel, crafted out of concrete, is on the remote northern coast of Bali and used local materials for its doors, shutters and fences. ‘This is a place for unwinding and reconnecting to the self,’ Dezeen said

BEST HOUSING PROJECT – THE BORDERLESS COMMUNITY OF ZI NI TWELVE PORTALS BY FEI ARCHITECTS: Located in Guangzhou industrial zone, this former fiberboard factory has been transformed into a housing project that is tailor-made for seven young people. It includes spaces for living, working, socialising and exhibiting work, said Dezeen 







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BEST INFRASTRUCTURE PROJECT – CYCLING THROUGH THE TREES BY VISIT LIMBURGH: Winding through the treetops of a Belgian forest is this 700m (2,296ft) long ‘tight double-circle’ cycle path. Dezeen said: ‘The columns of the bicycle bridge in corten steel are alternately placed one, two and three metres (nine ft) apart and symbolise the straight trunks of the pine trees. This ensures that the construction blends nicely into the environment’

BEST LANDSCAPE PROJECT – KAREN BLIXEN PLADS BY COBE: An ‘undulating public plaza with sheltered parking for bicycles’ is how Dezeen described Karen Blixen Plads, which can be found in Copenhagen. It is one of the biggest public squares in the Danish capital and has ‘multi-functional design that accommodates and promotes green transportation, climate change adaptation and biodiversity’

BEST REBIRTH PROJECT – PARTY AND PUBLIC SERVICE CENTRE BY LUO STUDIO: Abandoned concrete foundations in Yuanheguan, China, have been repurposed and used to build this stunning new community centre. According to Dezeen, architects extended the foundations and added a timber-framed upper story. The lower level of the building, which consists of offices and conference space, is ‘wrapped in perforated bricks’ 

BEST RESIDENTIAL REBIRTH PROJECT – QISHE COURTYARD BY ARCH STUDIO: A former abandoned hutong has been transformed into this new award-winning home ‘with curving glass walls around internal courtyards’. Dezeen explained: ‘The home features two tea rooms, a study, dining room and living room situated around the courtyards, which are sheltered by wooden roofs with exposed beams’ 

BEST SMALL BUILDING – IN ABSENCE BY EDITION OFFICE AND YHONNIE SCARCE: This art installation was commissioned by the National Gallery of Victoria in Australia to ‘highlight the erasure of Indigenous knowledge and memory from Australia’s national story’

BEST URBAN HOUSE – THANG HOUSE BY VO TRONG NGHIA ARCHITECTS: According to Dezeen, this award-winning building ‘integrates rural living in the rapidly-growing city of Da Nang, Vietnam’. It added: ‘Living spaces are nourished with filtered air, diffused light and the aroma of grass and flowers that act as the green lungs’ 

BEST ARCHITECTURAL LIGHTING DESIGN – UNDER BY LIGHT BUREAU:  The lighting at Under – a partially submerged restaurant in southern Norway – proved a hit with Dezeen. It said: ‘The interior lighting ensures a warm and intimate experience inside the restaurant, without disturbing the view of the wonders beneath the sea, while the exterior sub-sea lighting makes various species of marine wildlife visible from inside the restaurant’ 

BEST INTERIOR PROJECT AND BEST HOTEL AND SHORT-STAY INTERIOR – CAPSULE HOTEL AND BOOKSTORE BY ATELIER TAO+C: This unusual hotel can be found inside an old ‘rammed-earth structure’ surrounded by mountains in Zhejiang Province, China. Dezeen pointed out that its walls are lined with bamboo bookshelves that ‘are stacked inside a triple-height space, doubling as a library and a bookshop’ 

BEST APARTMENT INTERIOR – LA NAVE BY NOMOS: Originally a former print shop, La Nave, in the Spanish capital Madrid, has been transformed into a sleek apartment that is ‘the result of a creative process that focuses on the use of local materials and construction systems linked to crafts’ 

BEST BAR INTERIOR – A SECRET BAR IN A LIVELY DOWNTOWN BY ATELIER XY: This secret Shanghai bar is best known for its amber insect collection and boasts a double-glass brick wall that is illuminated with LEDs. Dezeen said: ‘The design aims to express traditional Shanghai elements in a contemporary manner, such as the timber weave pattern that accentuates the beetles in the communal bar and the high wooden skirting’ 

BEST CIVIC AND CULTURAL INTERIOR – MUSEUMLAB BY KONING EIZENBERG ARCHITECTURE: This building in Pittsburgh was formerly the Carnegie Free Library of Allegheny, which dates back to 1890. After it was struck by lightning in the mid-2000s, the library was left in ruins. Designers at Koning Eizenberg Architecture rejuvenated the building, turning it into a children’s museum, which opened last year. ‘Interior alterations from the 1970s were stripped away to reconnect spaces, reintroduce daylight and reveal the bones of the historic architecture,’ said Dezeen

BEST HOUSE INTERIOR – BISMARCK HOUSE BY ANDREW BURGES ARCHITECTS: Located next to Sydney’s Bondi Beach, Dezeen described this semi-detached house as ‘exploring the relationship between house, garden and public realm along a gritty urban laneway’ 

BEST LARGE RETAIL INTERIOR – THE WEBSTER BY ADJAYE ASSOCIATES: Owned by luxury fashion brand The Webster, this curved, pink-tinted concrete retail building sits adjacent to the Los Angeles Beverly Center. Dezeen said: ‘Oscillating between varying textures, the interior is akin to a sculptural field punctuated by cast-in-place concrete columns and teardrop-shaped display plinths, creating a series of vignettes for the merchandise’ 

BEST LARGE WORKSPACE INTERIOR – WEINMANUFAKTUR CLEMENS STROBL BY DESTILAT DESIGN STUDIO: The Clemens Strobl winery, which boasts residential areas and a bathhouse, is at the centre of the Wagram Estate in Austria. It features a vaulted cellar, tasting room, kitchen and contains offices that form massive spatial bodies, which are interwoven into the architectural structure, define spatial borders and take on several functions, said Dezeen

BEST LEISURE AND WELLNESS INTERIOR – VIKASA BY ENTER PROJECTS ASIA: Located in the heart of Bangkok, this yoga studio comprises a series of ‘free-form yoga pods’ as well as a lobby area and luxury bathrooms that ‘integrate seamlessly into the layout’. Floor-to-ceiling windows were designed across the entire front facade to flood the space with natural light, Dezeen noted 

BEST RESTAURANT INTERIOR AND INTERIOR DESIGNER OF THE YEAR – TORI TORI SANTA FE BY ESRAWE STUDIO: The ‘cylindrical oak structure’ above the bar and the dark interiors is what impressed the judges about this restaurant in Mexico City. Dezeen explained that the ‘subtlety and sobriety of Japanese crafts and its skilled artisans have informed the interiors of the restaurant’. The design firm behind it, Esrawe Studio, ‘breathes dedication, passion and persistence, focusing on fine details and quality, always pushing boundaries and taking on new challenges’, the design website added

BEST SMALL INTERIOR – SMART ZENDO BY SIM-PLEX DESIGN STUDIO: With smart homes becoming increasingly common in Hong Kong, designers took this former two-bedroom living space in the city and converted it into a four-bedroom smart home. Dezeen said: ‘Sim-Plex uses the concept of the Zendo, which integrates both traditional Feng Shui doctrine and smart technology, to create a zen spiritual space’ 

BEST SMALL RETAIL INTERIOR – GLOSSIER SEATTLE BY GLOSSIER: Beauty brand Glossier worked with landscape designer Lily Kwong to create this ‘engaging and community-centric shopping experience’. Dezeen noted: ‘The space brought together industrial elements with meadow-like hills full of locally-sourced flowers’ 

BEST SMALL WORKSPACE INTERIOR – CODO BY LOFTWORK AND SHUHEI GOTO ARCHITECTS: Formerly a lecture hall, CODO in Shizuoka, Japan, is now a space for working, meeting and holding leisure events. Dezeen said: ‘The existing space was utilised in all directions and box-like steps were stacked in a staggered formation along the periphery of the room, which left a wide-open space in the centre’ 

EMERGING ARCHITECT OF THE YEAR – GAD LINE + STUDIO:  This Hangzhou-based architecture studio was founded in 2018 and ‘aims to break through the clear boundaries of traditional industry’. Pictured is the Jiunvfeng Study, a visitor centre on a mountainside in Shangdong, China, created by the studio

EMERGING INTERIOR DESIGNER OF THE YEAR – FORMAFATAL: This Czech-based design studio is an eight-member team that focuses its work on public spaces, making them ‘feel like home’. The firm says ‘all projects are approached individually with a focus on specific human needs’. Pictured is the interior of the Autentista wine bar in Czechia, which Formafatal designed 

  • To see all of the winners, visit the Dezeen website.  

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