Every two years since 2011, Air Canada’s enRoute magazine has sought out the best Canadian-designed hotels around the world. 2015 will mark the third biennial celebration of the country’s best interior designers and architects. Design firm Yabu Pushelberg has won a total of four Air Canada enRoute Hotel Design Awards including Best Overall Interior Design for the Four Seasons Hotel Toronto in 2013 and Best Overall Interior Design and Best Lobby (150+ Rooms) for The Waikiki Edition, Honolulu, and Best Lobby (<150 Rooms) for The Smyth Tribeca, New York in 2011. The firm’s co-founder Glenn Pushelberg tells us what makes these awards unique and why a 400-year-old Kyoto inn is his favorite hotel.
How does it feel to be a four-time Air Canada enRoute Hotel Design Awards winner?
We fly all the time with many different airlines. However, we’ve always thought of Air Canada as one of the best, and enRoute as one of the best airline magazines out there. As Canadians that design and travel all over the world, we’re very proud to have won that many times.
What makes these awards unique?
The judges are from all over the world so each one brings a unique perspective to the panel. It’s comforting to know that your work is being judged by people you admire and respect in the design industry – their opinions have value.
What are some of the design themes that will permeate the 2015 submissions?
In recent times, design has become more thoughtful and purposeful. It’s no longer a just a dry modern take on things. Design has much more character nowadays; it’s moving away from overly styled thematic hotels and spaces that were popular in the last five years.
If you had to choose one hotel in the world to stay at, which one would it be and why?
The Tawaraya Ryokan in Kyoto. It’s a 400-year-old inn that operates on the basic principles of innkeeping. Although it’s old, it still has a very clear view of its purpose and service to its customers. It’s a gem.
Will you be entering any projects for the 2015 awards?
Yes! Of course we will!