The second winning project of Interiors of the Month is a company headquarters in Hong Kong, developed by Design Systems Limited. Jury members praised its multi-sensory aspect and rich use of materiality.

While its relevance may be threatened by the pandemic, it speaks to the enduring importance of the physical workplace that a small office was awarded by our October jury as Interior of the Month. The central hub of a textile business in Hong Kong, the HKPI Headquarter Office by Design Systems Limited scored highly across the board, with top marks in innovation, functionality, creativity and sustainability. Distinguished as honourable mentions are a food market space in Puyang, architecture library for a university in Bangkok, coffee shop in California and cultural concept store in Shenzhen.

The HPKI office caught the eye of Hana Ahriz, cofounder of Space & Pepper, because of the fact that it carefully caters to all five senses using ‘touch, sound, biophilic elements, lights and more’. ‘I can clearly see different people strolling, working and having meetings in the space,’ she explained. Mark Anderson, director of education at Domus Academy concurred, saying: ‘The project is reminiscent of corporate architecture a half-century ago in which company-as-institution was an expressed value. The HPKI Headquarters is genuinely contemporary with an important but softened and human-centric aesthetic.’ Design Systems Limited’s use of materiality, regard for detail and utilization of upcycling techniques was celebrated by the entire jury, and it received an overall score of 8.23 in the category of Small Office.

Design Systems Limited prioritized nature and material use from beginning to completion of the HKPI Headquarter Office, the centre of which is a 'sky garden' aimed at fostering human connection. Photos: Courtesy of Design Systems Limited

Our October honourable mentions were acknowledged for Best Use of Material, Learning Space, Best Use of Colour and Single-Brand Store. The second-highest-scoring project (8.04 overall, Best Use of Material) was the Temporary Site of Shengli Market, a food retail space by LUO Studio in Puyang, China. Briefed to create a low-cost, rapid-build interior, the designers hope that the structure can be used for other purposes when disassembled. ‘The innovation lies in creating a highly functional space in a short amount of time, while not discounting sustainability and reusability,’ thinks Franziska Heuschkel, founder at Space & Pepper. ‘Not just the result but the approach too should become established and standardized across various industries.’

Department of Architecture’s boundary-pushing work for the library of the Faculty of Architecture at Bangkok’s Chulalongkorn University topped the list for Learning Space (7.75 overall). Sam McMorran, strategy and design director at IDEO, called the project an ‘incredibly engaging proposition deeply rooted in human-centredness and led with insight’. Stereoscope Coffee, a café in Orange County’s Buena Park designed by Wick Architecture and Design and Land Design Studio, garnered attention for an innovative 3D-artwork intervention (7.84 overall, Best Use of Colour). An ‘impactful use of colour, graphics and material in relation to the space’ motivated Vivian van Schagen, founder at The Invisible Party, to give the space a high score of 9. And, located in the cultural community of Shenzhen’s Pingshan Art Museum is our final October honourable mention, in the category of Single-Brand Store. The Yepsun Quality Cultural and Creative Store (7.73 overall) by ARCity Office takes cues from traditional, local construction techniques. Founder of HTDSTUDIO Howard Duffy called the interior a ‘lush solution’ – ‘literally an example of when the abstract and concrete collide, to a powerful result’.  

‘A beautifully clean, ordered and uplifting way to breathe new life into a staple of Chinese daily life – the market,’ commented Sam McMorran, strategy and design director at IDEO of the Temporary Site of Shengli Market. ‘The wayfinding approach and scale works very well to demarcate and add great character to the experience.’ Photo: Jin Weiqi

Tracey Wiles, principal at Woods Bagot, said of the Chulalongkorn University architecture library: ‘[It’s] a beautifully detailed space, controlled in every sense, yet providing many layers of interest.’ Photo: W Workspace

‘It takes my breath away!’ wrote Nic Lee, design director at Waterfrom Design, about the 3D-artwork installation at Buena Park’s Stereoscope Coffee. Photo: Benny Chan

‘The rammed earth walls area a welcome surprise,’ thinks Howard Duffy, founder at HTDSTUDIO, of the treatment at Yepsun Quality Cultural and Creative Store. The designer believes that it is a ‘severely underused building technology’. Photo: Bai Yu

There’s still much to learn about – and from – our October lineup. On 10 November, last month’s jury will come together for a public live-judging session on Zoom, sharing their opinions about the winning project and honourable mentions all while imparting need-to-know industry insights (register here). Already curious about what’s in store for the next round? Learn more about our November jury here, and stay updated with our Awards page – new projects are published daily.

Architects and designers, there will be a chance every month to win an award in the lead up to the annual Frame Awards ceremony in June 2021. Submit your project today to be amongst a growing platform of the world's best spaces.