(Left to right) Elizabeth Bonner, creative design director at Durkan; 2nd runner-up Heather Wilkinson; grand-prize winner Elizabeth Hadden; and Cindy Guthrie, president of NEWH.
Las Vegas— Winners of Durkan’s annual hospitality design contest, the dscvr19 Student Design Competition, were officially announced as part of the programming at this year’s HD Expo, held here last week.
The competition is sponsored each year by Durkan and NEWH, a networking organization for hospitality industry professionals. The program exhibits the talent of designers in the hospitality field and contributes toward the education of future designers within the industry. The Durkan and NEWH partnership gives students opportunity, networking, experience and financial assistance for college. Submissions were reviewed by a panel of Durkan associates and judged based on concept, presentation and market feasibility.
“The dscvr competition gives us the chance to introduce students to the idea of a career in hospitality, which is a very exciting segment that is fashion-forward in design,” said Elizabeth Bonner, creative design director for Durkan. “One of the great benefits of this wonderful collaboration with NEWH is that the winners get to experience HD Expo, where they see the latest in hospitality design, meet with other designers and have one-on-one time with the Durkan team.”
Impressions of Safavid
Elizabeth Hadden, of Utah State University, won first place with her design, Impressions of Safavid.
This design’s patterns and themes take their inspiration from the murals and mosaics of the Safavid era, which gloried in Persia’s ancient tradition of glazed ceramic art. Muted for a modern touch, Impressions of Safavid suggests glimmers of elegance, royalty and enchantment without overwhelming surrounding décor. The design’s subtle blues are evolved from the hues of coveted lapis lazuli and imperial treasuries and are laced with gold to hint at the heritage of magnificent empires of antiquity.
In addition to being awarded a trip to Las Vegas to attend HD Expo, Hadden was honored on-site as the grand prize winner, receiving a $2,500 NEWH scholarship from Durkan.
Second place winner was Hannah Oelz, of Savannah College of Art and Design, with her design, Tides. Tides is inspired by the interplay of the ocean rising and falling over rockpools. As the first runner-up, she is the recipient of a $1,000 NEWH scholarship from Durkan.
Heather Wilkinson, of Utah State University, was named second runner-up with her design, Sonoma. Sonoma was created to bring attention to the landscape of the American Southwest. Wilkinson was also awarded a trip to attend HD Expo.
“NEWH believes that students gain so much knowledge about our industry through the dscvr program,” said Cindy Guthrie, president of NEWH. “It is sometimes the first opportunity they have to be exposed specifically to the hospitality industry. Through dscvr, students discover more about themselves and about our wonderful industry. We are honored and delighted to be a part of dscvr.”
Designs from the top three finalists will ultimately be promoted and cataloged by Durkan.