Check out out some past winners from the EMEA region below – take inspiration and see what it takes to be a WAN Awards winner

New Comédie de Genève Theatre

(Civic- The Arts, Gold, 2022)

The Story: 

“I enjoyed the confidence of the interior and found this to be a mature building which was engaging and fun” James Twomey, Judge.

 The cutting-edge performance venue has a glass façade which showcases the double-height foyer with its café, restaurant, library and ticket offices. It has two  - the larger of which seats 500, and has a traditional theatre design. The smaller hall, which seats 250, is an experimentational performance space with a modular seating system that can be configured in different ways and walls lined with fibre-reinforced concrete slats for outstanding acoustics.

Design highlights:

In order to mitigate noise and vibrations from the nearby railway, the architects created an ingenious “box within a box” over the two theatres, which is supported by independent structures which in turn rest on springs. Located in a new neighbourhood on the edge of Geneva the theatre plays its part in the city’s goal to be carbon neutral by 2050. Its foyer is a bioclimatic space meaning that  passive solar gain heats the space in winter, while in summer natural ventilation from openings at the top of the building keep the space cool.

Photograph credits: 

yves andre

BEEAH Headquarters’

(Commercial – offices and studios, Gold, 2022)

Main story:

“An extremely well-considered and elegant sustainable solution within the harshest of climatic conditions,” James Twomey, Judge

The building is powered by its solar array and designed to achieve net-zero, incorporating future-ready technologies for minimal energy consumption. The offices are housed in a series of interconnecting 'dunes' with the two primary 'dunes' interconnecting via a central courtyard to create an oasis within the building which is integral to its natural ventilation strategy.

Visitors enter beneath the 15-metre high dome which further enhances natural ventilation and allows passive daylight to enter the building. 

Design highlights:

A high percentage of locally procured materials have been used, including glass reinforced fibre panels which reduce solar gain, while slab and glass cooling regulate interior temperatures for optimum comfort. The headquarters' on-site water treatment filtrates waste water to minimise consumption and the solar farm charges Tesla battery packs to meet the building's energy demand throughout each day and night. The building's smart management system automatically adjusts lighting and temperature depending on occupancy and time of day. 

Photo credits:


(Residential, Gold, 2022)

“A wonderful and creative reimagining of an existing building that had outlived its original purpose. The principle of retro first and re-use is a welcome approach combined with new ways of living and working,” Heinz Richardson, Judge.

The building aims to rethink the traditional idea of a workspace and office by enabling residents to live and work in the same studio, for optimum life/work balance. The shared ground floor creates the ideal surroundings to encourage exchange of ideas and knowledge between visitors and residents. It is also designed to foster the creation of new social and professional communities through co-working areas, a gym, roof terrace, lounge, meeting rooms, basement parking and eatery. While a community manager is on hand to facilitate joint activities. 

Design highlights: 

Sustainability is prioritized at Siljangade – reuse of the old industrial building’s core structure helped to dramatically minimize the CO2 footprint during construction. The Kitchen at Siljangade is an environmentally conscious restaurant with ingredients sourced from the in-house vertical farm in the building’s basement - herbs and leafy greens are harvested here and taken straight up to the cafe. It doesn’t get much more local than that!

Photo credits: 

NREP / Juul Frost Architects / Niels Nygaard