“Running an award for the first time wasn’t without its learning moments,” says Siddharth Peters, Co-Founder at Love That Design. “Sustainability is a hard field to judge, each individual bringing their vast experience of project knowledge, client interactions and perspectives into play. I truly believe that each of them had an opportunity to learn from each other while sharing their expertise which made for an enriching experience for them and the adjudication process.”
The judges may not always agree on each topic, in fact, there were many intense discussions during the first meeting. The design of products was a weighted consideration – it allowed each product to truly demand a unique ranking, which otherwise may have been simply a boast for a manufacturer with the most certifications.
As the awards are based in the Middle East, virtually every product has to be imported, highlighting the additional logistics involved and the consequent increase on a product’s carbon footprint, and lifecycle cost and assessment. It was fascinating to witness our judges who are professionals in their field, debate out the need for natural materials vs synthetic ones, how the human experience matters just as much as the environment that you work, play or live in.
Meet the Judges
CEO, Kristina Zanic Consultants
Kristina is the CEO of design studio Kristina Zanic Consultants, with offices in Dubai, Bangkok and Riyadh. She is a prominent figure in the world of interior design with 35 years of industry experience and an international portfolio of work with global brands, prominent local companies and private homeowners in over 20 countries.
Founder & Chief Innovation Officer, Ecomedes
Paul is an authority on green building and the application of technology in the real estate, design, engineering, and construction industries. He develops technology to simplify and streamline triple bottom line decision-making for the built environment and deliver ESG results.
Director of Interior Design, Pace
Ben Backhouse has been creating interiors for over 25 years. A staunch advocate of sustainable design, he also believes that the key to successful luxury interiors is a combination of creativity, attention to detail and a clear and supportive organizational structure that builds and fosters relationships with team members and clients alike.
Design Director, Gensler
Diane has extensive design experience within the Middle East region, and was one of the founders of the Perkins+Will design studio in Dubai. She has always focused on creating quality design from the inside out. Most notably her designs for international workplace, hospitality and mixed-use developments display attention to detail, a love of local art and quality of craftsmanship.
A creative, big-picture thinker, Amber always focuses on designing an interior that has cultural reference and is holistically designed. Whether for work, play or rest, she strives to create designs that simplify and enhance people’s interactions with the built environment.
COO of PMKConsult
Keenan has led the company to award-winning recognition for its project management excellence, having delivered mission-critical projects for multinationals and regional entities. He is leading the business’ operations through its offices within the UAE and KSA with assignments ongoing throughout the MENA region.