AHEC invites architects and designers in South Africa to nominate projects for 'Commercial Interior Design Awards 2012'


'Outstanding use of American hardwoods in a project' award to recognize regional projects featuring US hardwoods

August 21, 2012 - With just over a month left until the 'Commercial Interior Design Awards 2012', the American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC), the leading international trade association for the American hardwood industry, is inviting architects and designers in South Africa to nominate their projects for the prestigious awards. For the second year in a row, AHEC is sponsoring the 'CID Awards' where a new category - 'Outstanding use of American hardwoods in a project' - has been created. AHEC's involvement as the Gold Sponsor is part of its extensive outreach campaign championing the usage of American hardwoods amongst the region's leading architectural and design firms and is reflective of its commitment to educate specifiers and to increase awareness of the potential applications offered by American hardwoods.

The CID Awards will be held on Tuesday, September 25, 2012 at the Jumeirah Emirates Towers, Dubai and will pay tribute to the projects, interior design firms and designers making their mark on the interior design sector across the region. Last year, the new library at the Zayed University campus in Abu Dhabi grabbed top honors, winning the award for 'Outstanding use of American hardwoods in a project', from amongst a list of contenders including the Pavilion Downtown Dubai, M's Restaurant, and Hakkasan Abu Dhabi. The new library was part of the overall AED 3 billion project designed by Hadi Teherani, which included 28 new buildings completed for the new campus inside Khalifa City. It is also the university's premier learning resource facility for both students and faculty and the award recognized the usage of American black walnut to create a conducive and inspiring ambiance for reading and learning.

"The new Zayed University Campus library is exemplary in terms of its design and its use of American hardwood," said Roderick Wiles, AHEC Director for Africa, Middle East, India and Oceania. "We have been extremely pleased with this project from the moment it started to take shape, till the moment it won the award for 'Outstanding use of American Hardwood in a project' at the CID Awards 2011. Our intention to partner with the awards was to draw attention to projects that best utilized American hardwoods and the ZU library does this beautifully. The positive response and feedback we got following the awards has encouraged us to continue this association in 2012, and we are confident that the 2012 edition of the CID Awards will receive impressive nominations for this category from across the region."

American hardwoods are well-established as a preferred material for interior projects and furniture due to the wide range of species, their performance, aesthetic appeal and excellent environmental credentials. Through its partnership with the CID Awards, AHEC is looking towards further strengthening its ties with the region's top architectural and design firms. The initiative complements AHEC's commitment to provide architects, specifiers, designers and end-users with technical information on the range of species, products and sources of supply of American hardwoods.

"The CID Awards is a well-established event for the design sector and our continued association with it will allow us to throw the spotlight on American hardwoods across the region. Given that wood has not only enjoyed a renaissance, but has become an essential material for architects across the globe, we are eager to raise awareness about American hardwoods within the specifying community in South Africa. These awards continue to provide a unique and exciting opportunity to see some of the very best projects and we are looking forward to seeing the nominations for this year's awards," concluded Wiles.

About AHEC:

The American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC) is the leading international trade association for the U.S. hardwood industry, representing the committed exporters among U.S. hardwood companies and all the major U.S. hardwood production trade associations. AHEC runs a worldwide programme to promote American hardwoods in over 50 export markets, concentrating on providing architects, specifiers, designers and end-users with technical information on the range of species, products and sources of supply. In addition, AHEC also produces a full range of technical publications. For more information, please visit: http://www.americanhardwood.org.

Photo: Zayed University Library, the winner of this award at last year's event.