The Hickson Design Partnership finalist

SBID International Design Awards 2019


The Hickson Design Partnership have become a finalist in the Hotel Public Space Design category of the SBID International Design Awards 2019.

Considered as one of the most prestigious accolades in interior design by the best in the industry, the SBID International Design Awards are awarded purely on the quality of the design, innovation, aesthetic and value-added to the project. Each entry undergoes an exhaustive two-tier judging process by panels of leading industry experts for both technical content and aesthetic creativity. Evaluating essential elements such as compliance with the brief, budget, health & safety and fit-for-purpose design. The Public Vote is the final tier of scoring, the public are invited to cast their votes for their favourite entries, as their votes will be counted towards the overall results.

The SBID Awards were recently accredited as the first interior design awards scheme to achieve GOLD standard by The Independent Awards Standards Council and were commended as “exemplar in how awards should be operated”.

HNH Resort ‘s project “Hotel Indigo Venice - Sant'Elena” was selected by the technical panel followed by the judges in the first two stages of the process. The Judges decisions is then finalised by a third tier online public vote, where all finalists’ designs are judged by the public, The public are now invited to cast their votes for their favourite entries at Last year, the awards received over 225,000 unique voters during the voting period

You can show your support and vote for THDP‘s project by visiting:


The Hotel Public Space Design category is dedicated exclusively to public spaces within hotel interiors which include lobbies, spa’s, ballrooms and meeting rooms. Entries could be full or part refurbishment, both new builds and restoration projects. Judges were looking for high levels of creativity and innovation for this category. Entries for this category were received from countries such UK, Kazakhstan, Thailand, Croatia, France, Hungary, Botswana and more.


Founder and CEO of SBID, Dr Vanessa Brady OBE says: “The SBID International Design Awards continue to grow from strength to strength with more submissions received, more countries represented and this year we have an additional category. It is known across the design industry as the premier design award to win and for that, we are quite rightly very proud to present it, as much as our entrants are to win it.”

Consistent in its quest to recognise, reward and celebrate global interior design, this year’s edition is intended to be bigger and better than ever with the addition of SBID’s 10th anniversary celebrations and a captivating ceremony planned at the event’s new venue: Grosvenor House in London on Friday 25 October.

Public voting will close on Monday 9th September at 5.00pm (UK time); The winners will be announced and awarded with a bespoke crystal trophy designed by Sans Souci Glass Deco. An overall winner will also be awarded for the project that gains the most votes overall from the judge’s choices and the public votes combined.

Judges this year include Creative Directors to the esteemed panel of judges from brands such as Nike, MAC Cosmetics; Universal Studios and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Foundation.

All winners and finalists will be featured in the Global Interior Design 2019 book which is distributed to over 1000 professionals across the globe and available to purchase on the SBID Awards website.

To find out more, visit




BARCELONA, Spain, 2019: AÜRT, the Hilton Diagonal Mar restaurant has won first place in the category for “Best Restaurant Design in Europe” at The International Hotel & Property Awards 2019. The project, designed by the London studio The Hickson Design Partnership, is part of the final phase of the Barcelona hotel’s ambitious renovation plan, launched in November 2016, encompassing the complete renovation of 440 rooms in 2017 and the comprehensive redesign of its events and meeting spaces.   

“One of the key objectives within our strategy has been to create an inspiring, stimulating and fully dynamic scenario where action flows and evolves in natural fashion. We wanted to present a lifestyle destination fitting to various client profiles, consistently in touch with the local community. Thanks to the work of Nick Hickson and his architectural team we have been able to achieve perfect harmony between interior design and our new mission” affirmed Joachim Hartl, Hilton Area Manager for the Iberian Peninsula.  

AÜRT, which launched last February, is Hilton Diagonal Mar’s new gastronomical brainchild, captained by the Michelin-starred chef Artur Martínez. Hilton Diagonal Mar and Martínez have been responsible for the creation of an informal haute cuisine restaurant, exposed at the heart of the hotel lobby. On their part, The Hickson Design Partnership took on the task of materializing the perfect space for a culinary project unique in the city.   


One of the traits features of this project is that both the rehearsal and the main event take place right in the heart of the hotel lobby. AÜRT is characterized by the transparency existing behind each plate, meticulously prepared in front of the client in an exclusive setting seating only 15 people, divided into two expansive, comfortable tables. The kitchen is in sight of the tables and offers a direct interaction between chef and dinner guest.

Under these parameters, the interior design studio faced the great challenge of creating an intimate space in a restaurant situated in a hotel’s central lobby. The creative concept began with designing a stage, considering that a large part of the kitchen’s work would be witnessed live.    

With this in mind, the interior design studio placed two extensive oak bars made of rust-coloured stone fixed alongside the kitchen work spaces, whilst the choice of furniture is a blend of Spanish contemporary design. The kitchen team weaves into the texture of the space, to the extent possible. 


The London firm took inspiration from the essence of the Mediterranean and the icons which define the city, and has used a chromatic pallet based on simplicity and naturalness, with hard and angular shapes to focus attention directly on the food. Meanwhile, tones in petrol blue and burnt orange are used to represent the energetic spirit of Barcelona. Large hanging brass lamps play a star role in the restaurant’s lighting, intentionally bringing focus to the dishes and their creator.       

Coexisting alongside AÜRT and also led by Martínez, is MA´I, a more informal setting, paying worship to the elaboration of beverages, recovering their historical relevance in the big hotels whilst reinterpreting their service under a unique gastronomical vision. This area combines three distinct spaces, dedicated to infusion, fermentation and distillation. Whilst the lobby shares the same aesthetic harmony as AÜRT, the studio has introduced more colour to create a sense of separation.

 “We are delighted with this new award. Since the beginning we have been working with The Hickson Design Partnership to create a different atmosphere which adapts to our own gastronomical narrative. The result we’ve achieved has been really satisfying, maintaining visibility and intimacy at the same time, in spite of being in a completely open space” commented Artur Martínez, head chef of AÜRT restaurant.


THDP Silver Winners London Design Awards 


Interior Design - Corporate & Commercial

This November THDP were pleased to receive a Silver Medal at this years London Design Awards by DrivenXDesign.

This award celebrates innovative and creative building interiors, with consideration given to space creation and planning, furnishings, finishes, aesthetic presentation and functionality. Consideration also given to space allocation, traffic flow, building services, lighting, fixtures, flooring, colours, furnishings and surface finishes.
Project Overview

Project Commissioner - Hilton Worldwide

Hilton Milan Hotel - Lobby Reception

Project Brief


The project brief was to bring modern Milan crashing through the front doors of the Hilton Milan. With an existing, very lack lustre entrance and guest experience the project brief was to update and breath new life and sociability into this most important of areas of the hotel. 
The guest on arrival was to be met with a style and exuberance that conveys that they are in a distinctly Milanese hotel. From the reception experience through to the lobby lounge, this was absolutely destined to have a relaxed elegant approach, interesting to the eye, exciting to the senses but above all a relaxing and "Casa Milan" style that ease the guest into the city.
The bar was to work night and day and to be a meeting place as well as a social place to drink and eat and enjoy a coffee an pastry in the morning to lunch and afternoon tea and onto the art of "apperativi" - a well established Milan bar ethic in the evenings. To introduce into the lobby area a lounge, to sit and relax and a quite area to work or use the internet and print information from.

Hilton Milan Hotel Lobby Bar

Project Innovation/Need

Giving the bar two personalities just by closing or opening doors. The back bar feature is cleverly designed, decorated and detailed in such a way that just by opening parts of the back bar doors and swinging 180 degrees closing off other areas of the back bar turns the bar from a day feel of coffee and pastries to night for cocktails and apperativi. 

This small but innovative detail has allowed the whole of the lobby bar and restaurant to have more than one personality and it transform the space instantly.

Design Challenge

All the challenges that the designers generally meet in a refurbishment project were in evidence here, including the renovation of the existing marble and granite floors and to integrate the existing finishes into the colour scheme to make them subtly step back and allow the new and modern to come through and take centre stage. Budget was an extreme challenge and of course this, along with the value engineering that was necessary did not impede the original design ethics and approach that where originally presented, what was built and finished was very much in line with the original design presentation. Clever use of materials and local artists gave this its individuality and the use of local FF&E companies met the low budget figure that was issued at the beginning of the project. The designers research the market locally and delivered a high quality interior that is much talked about in Milan.


The whole of the project was locally sourced - the furthest company used for the supply of FF&E was in the Veneto. The use of new materials that where either from sustainable sourses or materials that where re-cycled into the new finishes.



THDP & Oikos Paints won Best Product in the SBID International Design Awards for the Vintage Metal finish, specified and design by THDP for the rear wall of the reception at the Hilton Milan Hotel 

Hilton Milan Hotel Reception completed in July 2016

Hilton Milan Hotel Reception completed in July 2016

Rear Wall of Hilton Milan Hotel Reception Desk - in Oikos Vintage Metal

Rear Wall of Hilton Milan Hotel Reception Desk - in Oikos Vintage Metal

Oikos Paints Vintage Metal surface material has been created to respond to performance, budget and flexibility. The excellence in craftsmanship makes it possible to create new custom surfaces not just for walls but also for art installations in public spaces for interior architecture.. The vintage metal has been used in the renovation of the Hilton Milan lobby as a demonstration of Italian craftsmanship and innovation in the heart of Milan. The blend of metallic recycled powders and plaster creates unique surfaces that reflect design concepts. The finished material is soft to the touch, scratch and light resistant, and can be applied off-site so the installation can be delivered on-site ready to be fitted. It is sustainable, made from a waste product from metal rather than metal sheets; it is light and economical and it can be customised infinitely.

THDP Finalist at the SBID awards for Best Public Space 

THDP was placed a finalist in the PUBLIC SPACE category with the Hilton Milan Lobby refurbishment project.  

The awards recognise, reward and celebrate design excellence across a broad range of categories. Winning a SBID International Design Award is a high achievement – they are evaluated by leading industry experts for their technical content and aesthetic creativity while the design-conscious public also has a say in choosing the most inspiring projects.