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CEDIA Awards 2012: a historic evening

2012 was a record-breaking year for the CEDIA Awards, with more than 100 projects from a dozen countries entered. The prizes were awarded at a black-tie event at Hampton Court Palace, formerly the site of King Henry VIII's court.

Hampton Court Palace was the splendid setting for the 2012 CEDIA Awards. which took place on Friday 20 April. No less a personage than King Henry VIII [are you sure about this? Ed] announced the proceedings in stentorian tones, while Pollyanna Woodward, presenter of Channel 5’s The Gadget Show, presented the awards in front of an audience of more than 250 industry professionals.

In a record-breaking year for entries, which saw over 100 projects from more than ten countries in competition, this year’s Award winners included a series of remarkable installations across the categories – representing the crème de la crème of smart home installations from across CEDIA Region 1.

In the Media Rooms categories, the winners were London-based Olive AV for delivering an impressive modern twist on an 18th century period property renovation, and Spanish installer Smart Business for a stunning multi-functional media room paradise, appropriately entitled All-in-One.

South African companies scooped two of the three Home Cinema categories. Cinema Architects took the big prize in the Best Home Cinema under £40,000 category for an authentic Hollywood-style South African movie theatre, whilst HFX Systems created a cinema that showed “how it should be done” (in the judges’ words) in its House Strydom project. Top prize in the over £100,000 Home Cinema category went to UK-based Smartcomm for a futuristic home cinema.

T&T Automation secured the number one position in the Best Integrated Home under £30,000 and over £250,000 categories for its imaginative solutions in two contrasting London properties. Perfect Integration, meanwhile, delivered “an excellent job of making integration virtually invisible” with its Great Barn project in the Best Integrated Home £30,000-£100,000 section. Grahams Hi-Fi completed a clean sweep in this section for UK dealers with their Regency project in the £100,000-250,000 price band.

Bournemouth’s Dawsons took the honours in the Best Marine category for “a technically flawless installation which integrates seamlessly with stunning interior design” aboard MY Never Say Never. And, London’s SMC emerged victorious with the Grosvenor Crescent project in the Best Multiple Scheme for a Property Developer section.

It’s Done Technology hit the right note for technical excellence in this year’s Awards, winning first place in the Best Dressed Rack category. The company’s Wojtek Zajac was singled out for special recognition, receiving the Technician of the Year accolade as an installer who consistently produces work to the highest standard. Grahams Hi-Fi struck gold in the Best Innovative Solution for their “clever and challenging” Aces High Media Wall.

CEDIA Awards were also presented in two trade supplier categories. Best Trade Supplier, adjudged by CEDIA members, was awarded to Crestron and winner of Best Training Initiative by a Trade Supplier went to AWE for its Philips Dynalite programme. Finally, journalist Emily Peck scoped this year’s Best Technology Feature in a Homes / Interiors publication for her Home Technology article in the January issue of Essential Kitchen Bedroom Bathroom.

The CEDIA Awards are a fantastic showcase for technical expertise, design creativity and professional integration,” explained Gary Lewis, Chair of CEDIA. “These companies are responsible for raising the bar both in terms of the standard of the submissions and the expectations of what can be achieved. The competition this year was truly more intense than ever. Our congratulations go to all the winners who truly deserve their success. We’d also like to thank all finalists and entrants to this year’s scheme which has been the most successful yet.

This year’s scheme has also seen the introduction of a glossy 88-page Awards Yearbook presenting all the entries and detailing their work. To request a copy, email [email protected]. Alternatively, an electronic version of the CEDIA Awards Yearbook is available for download.