Winners of the 2014 Interior Design Excellence Awards (IDEA) have been announced, with Kennedy Nolan taking home the night’s Overall Winner prize for its St Kilda House West project.

Incorporating Asian architectural themes within a contemporary vernacular, St Kilda House West takes inspiration from the client’s desire to have an expressive home that isn’t formulaic or symbolic. The resulting design responds with a sensibility that is never literal.

The project was also recognised as the winner of IDEA’s Residential Single category.












Photography by Derek Swalwell

The Designer of the Year award went to Woods Bagot, which was praised for its contribution of diverse exemplar projects over the past year.

Spanning across hospital, commercial and public spaces, notable projects from the practice include the Royal Randwick, South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI), NAB 700 Bourke Street, The Collins and Co-working Village.













Left: SAHMRI by Woods Bagot. Image: Trevor Mein

Right: Royal Randwick by Woods Bagot. Image: Shannon McGrath

“Their ability to design acumen is both resolute and of an aesthetic quality like no other,” says the event team.

The IDEA Gold Medal, which recognises practitioners who have made an enduring contribution to Australian design over the course of their career, was presented to Chris Connell (pictured below).

Director of Chris Connell Design, Connell has over 30 years’ experience within the architecture, interior design and furniture industry and, together with Raoul Hogg, founded MAP. 

His iconic Pepe chair is included within the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art, MoMA, New York.

Other big winners of the night include Breathe Architecture, which received IDEA’s Sustainability award for The Commons, a triple bottom line development that also won the Residential Multi category. The Emerging Design Award was given to C + M Studio for their inaugural project, Manly Penthouse, which sees a curved interior room inserted within a modernist shell.

The Commons by Breathe Architecture. Image: Andrew Wuttke

Manly Penthouse by C+M Studio. Image: Caroline McCredie

Greg Natale, an interior designer and architect with his firm Greg Natale, was named the inaugural winner of the Editor’s Medal. His 2014 portfolio includes projects such as Croydon House, East Brisbane House and Tennyson Point house, as well as a range of rugs, carpets, wallpapers and furniture.

Croydon House by Greg Natale. Image: Anson Smart

All winners were selected by the 2014 judges – Miriam Fanning (Mim Design), Fiona Dunin (FMD Architects), Trent Jansen and Grant Amon (Grant Amon Architects), Jon Goulder and Mark Simpson (DesignOffice), and Inside Magazine’s editors Jan Henderson and Gillian Serisier.

Full list of winners:

Overall Winner

Kennedy Nolan – St Kilda West House

Designer of the Year

Woods Bagot

Gold Medal

Chris Connell

Editors’ Medal

Greg Natale

Emerging Designer

C+M Studio


Breathe Architects – The Commons


Winner: NGV + Mathery – Pastello - Draw Act

Highly Commended: Fold Theory – City of Trees

Highly Commended: Justin Architecture – Fallow: Between Abandonment and Rebirth


Winner: DesignOffice – A. Baker

Highly Commended: Tonkin Zulaikha Greer Architects – Norton Street Cinema

Highly Commended: Pascale Gomes-McNabb Design (PGMD) – Yellow


Winner: BVN Donovan Hill – Regional Terminal at Christchurch Airport

Highly Commended: BVN Donovan Hill in association with Jasmax – ASB North Wharf

Highly Commended: Travis Walton Architecture – Sisterfields

Object – Furniture and Lighting

Winner: Coco Flip – Bucket Table

Highly Commended: Christopher Boots – Asterix Series

Highly Commended: Ross Gardam – Asymmetry

Public Space

Winner: Bates Smart – 171 Collins Street

Highly Commended: Luchetti Krelle – Claremont House Driveway

Highly Commended: Museum Victoria Design Studio – First Peoples Exhibition

Residential Decoration

Winner: Arent&Pyke – The Avenue

Highly Commended: Sarah Davison Interior Design – Art House

Residential Multi

Winner: Breathe Architecture – The Commons

Highly Commended: DesignOffice – Park and Raphael Display Unit

Highly Commended: Smart Design Studio and Koichi Takada Architects – One Central Park

Residential Single

Winner: Kennedy Nolan – St Kilda West House

Highly Commended: Andrew Burges Architects – Pittwater House

Highly Commended: Maddison Architects – Cabin 2


Winner: Kerstin Thompson Architects – Aesop Emporium

Highly Commended: Elenberg Fraser – Adrian Zumbo Patisserie

Highly Commended: Studio Equator – Whites Dispensary

Workplace Over 1000sqm

Winner: Architectus and Ingenhoven Architects – Sydney Commonwealth Parliament Offices

Highly Commended: CO-AP – Camperdown Childcare

Highly Commended: Intermain – WWF Australia

Workplace Under 1000sqm

Winner: Melbourne Design Studios – Birkenstock Australia HQ

Highly Commended: Alexander &Co. – Calida HQ