Announcing Our ITSA 2016 Winners!
Year three of the Install & Technology Solutions Awards has come to a close and after a period of quiet, not so quiet, heated, down-right rowdy, and inevitably punchy uppy debate amongst our venerable judges, the victors of each category have been picked.
Sponsored this year by our friends at Connected Distribution (http://www.connecteddistribution.com), as with previous years, the level of entries has been staggeringly high, making the process of picking one winner per category extraordinary difficult. Which is why each judge was recompensed handsomely with a £10 gift voucher for Aldi.
BEST OF THE BEST
As with last year, our ITSA 2016 winners will receive not only the considerable kudos of coming first, but also a certificate of CI superiority to display proudly wherever they see fit and, most importantly, the knowledge that the CI industry’s oldest and finest publication found their work to be first and foremost amongst the custom install world’s very best.
Naturally, we’d like to say a big than you to all our entrants – there are no losers, just, erm, those that won more… or something.
So, without further ado, let’s cut to the chase and view, in all their glory, 2016’s ITSA champions of Custom Install!
BEST INTERNATONAL: ELYTRONIC
Project: Cyprus Home
Deliver an elaborate automation project for a family home in Cyprus. The planning stage alone took almost two years, with multiple revisions until the end of 2013; such was the scope of the project. The size of the house is generous, over 2000m², and was to include over 25 unconnected systems, that needed integrating to make this family home work seamlessly. With the design finalised, the project was delivered in 2016.
Elytronic created a user-friendly system with minimal disruption to the aesthetic of the home. Two kinds of devices control the home – touchscreen and keypads – meaning the homeowner only needs to interact with one simple interface for all systems. The walls in the residence only have two controls in each room, the touchscreen and keypad, with no visible thermostats, switches, intercoms and so on, leaving them beautifully untainted – brief fulfilled beautifully. A triumph of Custom Installation!
BEST DESIGN: SMARTA CONSTRUCTION & TECHNOLOGY
Project: Cardiff Family Room
Create a room that wasn’t just a ‘man-cave’ but one that worked for all the family, and friends, too. It had to be a room that is ‘all things to all people’, so had to be designed to allow multiple activities to happen at the same time in the same space. The lighting, sound, and vision had to work on their own, and together.
“We didn’t really know all this was possible. I guess you don’t know what you don’t know. When Smarta showed us some examples of solutions they’d given other people, we got really excited about what might be possible. We must say that the reality has surpassed even those expectations – we’re still discovering all the things we can do, and how we can all have fun at the same time. The only problem is who has gets big screen, me or the kids!”
And we agree fully with the clients, Andrew and Sarah, it’s an excellent example of what can be achieved when innovation and imagination goes into an installation.
BEST LIGHTING & LIGHTING CONTROL INSTALLATION: ANDREW LUCAS
Project: Hampstead House
The brief stipulated that the maximum possible adherence to the principle of invisible technology. In line with this, no more than two or three lighting fixtures could be accommodated in each room and there are no spotlights at all throughout the property – only wall lights, LED strip lights and free- and floor-standing lamps were permitted, but these few fixtures needed to generate an adequate level of lux in all areas of the residence both during the daytime and at night.
Hampstead was an incredible project as it forced the team to think outside of the box and really blend the restricted lighting scheme into this minimalist masterpiece. Working alongside a team of some of the best tradespeople in the world, Andrew Lucas London created a sophisticated lighting and shading system that elegantly sits alongside the powerful architectural design ensuring to enhance rather than detract from it.
BEST MARINE/NAUTICAL INSTALL: ARCHIMEDIA
Project: Yacht Install
The toughest of briefs, the client for this project was a yacht builder that tends to sell most of its yachts post-completion. As there is no specific owner to consult during the construction phase, Archimedia had to design and install a system that would please any end-user and be customisable to their needs once they owned the boat.
A CEDIA winner and an ITSA winner, this is a project of Charlie Sheen-sized ‘win’ proportions. You can read the full case study over on page 42 of this issue and judge for yourself why Archimedia deserve every award they get for this stunning slice of CI work.
BEST SHOWROOM: CRESTRON
Project: Crestron Showroom, Design Centre Chelsea
Crestron’s showroom has been a key destination for those looking to incorporate the latest home technology into interior design since it opened in 2013. The brief was to design an inspirational space for interior designers, architects and integrators to bring their clients to explore home automation and to create an interactive space for visitors as the perfect venue to experience the ways in which a stunning interior décor can be seamlessly intertwined with technology.
Crestron recently launched its newly refurbished showroom at the Design Centre Chelsea Harbour, which has been beautifully redesigned with furnishings from leading high-end interior brands. Located in the heart of the design world, Crestron’s showroom is the only showroom that brings together luxury lifestyle technology and exquisite interior design, perfectly presented in a series of stylish settings.
The showroom is a fantastic example of how modern lifestyle technology can work perfectly alongside any interior design. The blend of cutting-edge technology with innovative textiles, furnishings and decorative fittings delivers a truly unique space to showcase Crestron technology in the home.
BEST SINGLE HOME CINEMA INSTALLATION: NEW WAVE AV
Project: Sevenoaks Basement Cinema Room
The brief for the cinema room was very clear from day one – the client wanted a cinema room that was open and inviting and that the whole family would want to use. The cinema room was to be part of a wider entertaining space which meant there were a number of visual and acoustic challenges that were faced. The cinema room had no door and the rear wall was only half height.
An exceptional example of how innovation in custom install can overcome all obstacles, even rooms with poor access and half walls. New Wave AV embraced the client’s brief and more than delivered, the result being a beautiful cinema space that, as per the brief, any family would want to use constantly.
BEST WHOLE HOUSE INTEGATION: CTS SYSTEMS
CTS was asked by the developer of this truly breath-taking new build residence in the exclusive London suburb of Weybridge to deliver a complete smart home solution that would attract potential buyers and give the future homeowner a reliable and easy to use entertainment solution.
Comfort, convenience and seamless integration of technology were all of paramount importance in a project that needed to combine extensive, flexible control of entertainment, lighting, security and environment throughout the property.
An interesting project as, although a luxury residence, the client was the developer and prospective seller rather than a new owner and end-user of the technology installed. As such the solution provided needed to have the high level of features, functionality and wow-factor that would impress potential buyers but would also be highly customisable and practical so a new owner could easily tailor the entire house to their own personal experience – there’s little doubting that CTS’s work has all of that in abundance!
ANOTHER ITSA OVER
Many thanks to our panel of judges for their time and effort, to our sponsors for 2016, those distributors of Hi-Fi and custom installation kit of distinction, Connected Distribution, and congratulations to all of our ITSA 2016 winners.