For the third consecutive year, the Danish supplier of interior design solutions, Holmris.Designbrokers were the hosts for Copenhagen’s most impressive event for designers and architects. Yet again, the choice of the atmospheric Locomotive Workshop was impeccable. The 9.000 m² floor space was utilized perfectly for the 105 exhibitors, street-food vendors, the lounge bar and Speakers Corner. With over 2700 guests arriving from far and wide, the event was a perfect opportunity for valuable networking and discovering the trends and dilemmas predicted for future workplace designs and the hospitality & care sectors.
Holmris.Designbrokers deserve tremendous credit for putting together a program focusing on the dilemmas facing architects, designers and furniture manufacturers in the realms of office design, the future physical solutions for those needing care and the trends hotels are embracing. Undoubtedly, the array of talks and debates were the highlight of the event. Even an impromptu fire alarm during the Milanesse architect, Giulo Cappellini‘s presentation, could not dampen his spirits and the enthusiasm from the audience.
However, my personal highlights was witnessing the informal, debates such as our approach to future technologies, design processes and not least, funding for future health and caring facilities. The invited specialists, Anthony Haas, (Senior Partner, WHR Architects), Morten Gregersen, (Partner, Nord Architects) and Paul Erik Weidemann, (Director, OK-Fonden), debated future models of care and treatment, home-based technologies, especially in the field of dementia and the role of civic collaboration that highlighted clearly the challenges ahead.
From the Lounge Bar to Speakers Corner, where Luke Pearson, the British furniture designer at PearsonLloyd, gave an eloquent masterclass in their collaborations with their clients, with Lufthansa being the perfect case story. Luke’s precise and empathetic presentation was a shining example for all architects and designers on how important “mapping the brief” really is.
Uplifted I stayed in Speakers Corner for the next event, Office Vs Coffice, a theme that had obviously struck a chord as the audience swelled profusely. The panel put together to discuss the dilemmas facing architects and designers in addressing the physical and behavioural challenges of future workspace designs, was composed of the Danish designer and entrepreneur behind 23 videos.net, Thomas Madsen-Mygdal, the anthropologist, Rikke Ulk and property developer, Tetris Anders Sælen. The popular Danish tv and radio journalist, Mads Steffensen, navigating the questions touching on the dilemmas of designing and understanding the workplaces of the future.
Finally, it was back to the lounge bar to check the pulse of the hotel and hospitality segment, a debate I looked forward to as Copenhagen is currently enjoying a hotel boom despite healthy competition from Airbnb. On the sofa, so to speak, was the Director for Business Development, Visit Denmark, Anja Hartung Sfyria, Michael Telling, Director, Telling & Nesager and Jens Mathiesen, Director, Scandic Hotels. Tourism in Denmark, especially in Copenhagen, has never looked brighter and it was difficult to detect any negativity from the panel. With all aspects of niche tourism still showing healthy signs of growth for 2017, the panel agreed there was still a need to focus attention on optimizing hotels facilities, customized hotel rooms, intensifying hotels local brand and satisfying the guests desire for an authentic customer experience. It was difficult not to be uplifted by the panel’s vision for Copenhagen’s future as a tourist destination and the hotels to welcome them.
The talks and debates during the day emphasized the merging of our daily physical spaces, where workspaces blend with hospitality facilities, as hospitals and care centers knit with hotels. The demands for architects and designers, to listen and understand the clients brief are becoming more complex and yet much more rewarding.
Thanks to the team at Holmris.Designbrokers and a special thanks to my host and guide, Jan Palsmark.
Content & Photos: Phillip Mills