Commercial Interiors UK Annual Luncheon celebrates success and innovation

On 2 November 2023, the opulent Royal Lancaster Hotel in London played host to the most significant event on the calendar for the commercial interiors industry – the Annual Luncheon organised by Commercial Interiors UK.

This annual gathering has solidified its reputation as the most prominent event for designers, architects, manufacturers, and suppliers in the commercial interiors sector. It’s a day of celebration, reflection, and the exchange of innovative ideas.

Carolyn Mitchell, Commercial Interiors UK Chair, in her keynote address to the guests, emphasised the unique role that the Annual Luncheon plays in uniting professionals from all corners of the commercial interiors sector. “It’s the only event that brings us all together from all areas of our industry,” she noted. Her address didn’t stop there; she also touched on the prevailing issue of inflation, highlighting the prolonged impact it has had on the sector.

In an ever-evolving industry, technology has become an essential component of commercial interiors. Carolyn highlighted the pivotal role that technology, including smart solutions and augmented virtual reality, plays in transforming the way we design and experience commercial spaces. The integration of such technology offers a glimpse into the future of the sector, where creativity and functionality are enhanced through digital innovation.

Another notable aspect of the event was the recognition of Design Insider as the dedicated media partner of Commercial Interiors UK. This unique partnership sets the association apart, providing a valuable platform that amplifies the brands and services of its members. As the only trade association with such a tool, it underscores the organization’s commitment to fostering collaboration and growth within the commercial interiors community.

The event also marked the introduction of Sean Holt as the new Managing Director of Commercial Interiors UK and Design Insider. In his speech, Sean outlined his vision and objectives, alongside the board, to further expand the organization’s membership, enhance the benefits members receive, and establish Design Insider as the leading industry journal. His mission is to promote collaboration within the commercial interiors community, setting a path toward continued innovation and progress in the field.

One of the highlights of the Annual Luncheon was the presentation of the Lifetime Achievement Award, sponsored by Panaz. This prestigious award recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions to the industry throughout their careers. In 2023, the award was presented to Colin Mustoe MBE, a truly deserving recipient.

Colin Mustoe’s journey in the commercial interiors industry began in 1976 when he founded Kingsway Contracts, which later evolved into Senator International and is now known as The Senator Group. In 2022, The Senator Group achieved a remarkable milestone, with a turnover exceeding £220 million pounds. Beyond his impressive business success, Colin Mustoe’s MBE, awarded in 2017, was for services to Manufacturing and Charity. His commitment to the Blackburn Youth Zone and his dedication to apprenticeships have left an indelible mark on the industry. He has consistently advocated for the inclusion of young talent, further emphasizing the importance of investing in the industry’s future.

The event concluded on a high note with entertainment provided by “Welsh of the West End,” known for their stunning performances on ITV’s Britain’s Got Talent. Their renditions of musical theatre classics have garnered over 18 million views online and captivated audiences at iconic venues such as the Royal Albert Hall and the London Palladium.

Reflecting on the success of the event Sean Holt said: “The Annual Luncheon is not just a celebration of our industry’s accomplishments, but also a platform to foster new relationships, share ideas, and explore business opportunities. This year’s event was a testament to the industry’s resilience, innovation, and commitment to collaborate. With over 525 attendee’s I can now see why this is the must attend event for those working in the commercial interiors sector.”

Carolyn concluded: “The Annual Luncheon has once again proven itself as the highlight of the commercial interiors industry calendar, uniting professionals, recognising achievements, and inspiring a brighter future. It would not have been possible without the generous support of its sponsors, who are industry giants in their own right.

“We would like to say a big thank you to the 2023 sponsors: Agua Fabrics, Edmund Bell, GP&J Baker, Hansgrohe, Hypnos Contract Beds, Muraspec, Panaz.”

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