South Africa’s design talent and expertise won global recognition in October last year. Interior architecture company, Paragon Interface, part of the Paragon Group, was declared Office Design Winner for 1 Discovery Place in Sandton at the prestigious Society of British and International Interior Design (SBID) International Design Awards 2018, held at the Dorchester Hotel in London in the UK on 26 October.

The SBID International Design Awards is a highlight on the global interior design calendar and celebrates all aspects of great design – from aesthetics to functionality. Entries in the 14 categories go through a strict three-tier process judged by a specially-selected panel of experts, where creative calibre and technical standards are scrutinised.

Paragon Interface Director, Claire D’Adorante, says the company is very proud to have won the award.

“The award means a lot for the South African interior design industry. This was a once-in-a-lifetime project that was not only an immense privilege for the entire team to work on, but one that has placed South African design firmly on the map, as showcased by this international accolade,” says Claire.

The judging panel consists of professionals working in many areas of design and industry, who are highly knowledgeable about the latest industry standards and technical innovations. This includes ensuring that every entry adheres to industry standards and is genuinely fit-for-purpose. The next stage is assessed by an expert panel of judges, with the public contributing 30% of the vote.

The interior of Discovery’s new head office is divided into three main atria, namely a central atrium and one each on the left and right. The judges’ citation highlights the main entrance as being open and welcoming, thereby reflecting the corporate values of the client.

The 130 000m² Phase 1 was completed in October 2017, and Phase 2 in April 2018. Discovery required the building to be active. To achieve this, the design team explored the concept of a concourse in the central atrium and translated this area into a dynamic design aesthetic that blends with an active public street populated with seating areas, cafés, streetlights and tree canopies.

“This project presented tremendous opportunities for us in terms of the tenant’s willingness to explore quite a dramatic design, and one that incorporated new design strategies to drive significant changes to their dynamic workplace culture,” says Claire.

With its impressive interior and architectural identity of swooping, curving patterns, the building has become one of the most progressive workspaces in South Africa.

“Instead of being a faceless corporate space, what we achieved here is inviting and welcoming, as well as calming and uplifting. We could only have achieved this through our closest attention to the smallest of details, which took the macro level in terms of the architecture through to every single aspect of the final building,” concludes Claire.

For more information, contact Paragon on (011) 482 3781 or via www.paragon.co.za.
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