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Hospitality Industry Turns Out in Record Numbers at BDNY

By Linda Longo

The annual Boutique Design New York (BDNY) trade show and conference centered around the boutique hospitality and lifestyle industry, gathered nearly 15,000 designers, architects, brand executives, hoteliers, developers, purchasers, manufacturers, and other professionals at the Javits Center recently to experience new products, engaging conversations, and strategic networking events.

The 2023 edition of BDNY continued the momentum of the previous year in the boutique and lifestyle hospitality industry.  In comparison to 2022, the 2023 show saw a 16% increase in overall attendance, a 15% increase in qualified buyers, and a 20% increase in exhibitors. More than 650 exhibiting companies participated, which included a greater international presence with more companies exhibiting from Spain and Italy, plus new pavilions from Portugal and Ukraine.

“The energy at BDNY this year was absolutely electric,” says Keisha Byrd, Brand Leader of BDNY.  “Starting with an impressive turnout of more than 400 industry leaders at the Platinum Circle Gala, followed by a who’s who of the industry on the trade fair floor, and ending with a sold-out Gold Key Awards, BDNY proved to be the premier destination for inspiration. It continues to be the pivotal platform that honors and elevates the products, projects, and personalities shaping the hospitality industry.”

Kevin Gaffney, Group Vice President of Emerald Design Group, added, “Following the success of another year and the positive response we received from exhibitors, attendees, and our design partners, we eagerly look forward to planning for 2024 and are committed to bringing the best of boutique design to New York.”  

Thousands of industry professionals explored new products and learned about the latest trends, new ideas, and standout projects in hospitality from more than 30 sessions covering such top-of-mind topics as biophilia in design, what’s new in F&B, state of the industry from owners and brands, how to nurture diversity in the industry, and the impact of AI on design. The show also featured the annual Women Leaders in Hospitality breakfast, held in conjunction with NEWH (Network of Executive Women in Hospitality), where female executives representing all facets of the industry shared their journeys, today’s challenges and opportunities, and lessons learned.

Besides the CEU-accredited stage designed by Goodrich, which was conceived as a talk show studio sculpted through color and graphics, BDNY also featured four Designed Spaces, which partners leading design and brand teams with manufacturers to create one-of-a-kind lounges and stages on the show floor:

• 1 Hotels crafted the Designed by Nature experience using sustainably sourced materials, layers of greenery, and neutral-hued furnishings.

• Imaginative Travel by Andaz, a collaboration between Hyatt and Host Hotels, designed by Otherworld Creative and Within Light Studio, delivered a luxe bar-at-sunset concept by balancing ethereal lighting and earthy textures to capture the very essence of a beachside escape.

• Rockwell Group used theatrical inspiration and subtly placed lighting to highlight iridescent fabric panels in darker, jewel tones to emulate a luxurious supper club vibe in the ChromaClub.

• KTGY + Simeone Deary Design Group was inspired by the Year of the Rabbit for Down the Rabbit Hole, part bunny hutch, part secret garden, with a hint of a mad tea party, to evoke conversation and build community and camaraderie.

In addition to presenting impressive designs, these spaces featured pop-up talks and food and drink throughout the two days. Click here to find out more about the Designed Spaces’ design teams and sponsors.

BDNY Meet, a platform for targeted connections between exhibitors and attendees, continued to serve as an important matchmaking tool both prior to the show as well as on-site. More than 3,700 attendees and exhibitors utilized the matchmaking and meeting request tool, an increase of 17% compared to 2022.

The Best of BDNY 2023 Product Design Competition winners were announced during the show. Chosen by two panels of industry experts, product winners and finalists were chosen across 14 categories for their aesthetic progress, functionality, and innovation; while best exhibit honorees in four categories earned nods for creativity in design, visual impact, effective and efficient use of materials, and outstanding use of space, color, texture, lighting, and graphics in their display.

In the Lighting category, the Winner/Best in Show went to the PushUp Pro Cordless Lamp by Zafferano America.

Perfect for outdoor bars, nightclubs, and lounges, the portable PushUp Pro by Zafferano offers 12 hours of cordless illumination per charge as well as touch dimming and 3-CCT color temperature selection (2200K, 2700K, and 3000K). A simple push turns it on and off, and it is available in 4 colors: White, Sand, Dark Grey, and Rust.
The Locket sconce, by Studio M, offers the visual effect of milky marble glass backlit with evenly diffused LED to provide luminosity. The vertical metal bracket is finished in Natural Aged Brass and completes the aesthetic of an elegant jewel.

Finalists were the Locket sconce by Studio M Lighting, and Murano Bulb by Multiforme.

The Murano Bulb project designed by Marcantonio for Multiforme evokes the iconic shape of the classic light bulb in a new way. The blown glass body is decorated with colors and shapes utilizing the Murano glassmaking tradition, making each bulb a unique piece.

In addition, the International Furnishings and Design Association (IFDA) presented its “Best in BDNY Show for Lighting” award to Schonbek.

“BDNY continues to deliver as the premier venue for the contract community,” explained Harry Moshos, LS, Director of Business Development for Schonbek, WAC Lighting, and Modern Forms. “The show this year felt better attended; our space was certainly busier than years past. Our strategy this year was to focus on luxury lighting and custom solutions with Schonbek, a 150-year-old brand with a stellar reputation and domestic U.S. manufacturing capabilities,” Moshos remarked. 

“The stunning 13′-high Infinity Tower showcasing 42,500 Heritage hand-cut crystals stole the show, along with the large diamond-shaped Baronet adorned with over 4,000 hand-pinned European Radiance crystals coming in a close second place. Also on display was Schonbek Beyond, a luxurious modern collection of LED-powered luminaires, and Schonbek Forever, our new designer jewelry-inspired lighting collection.”

Schonbek’s Infinity Tower served as the centerpiece to the company’s booth and received an IFDA Award at BDNY for best Lighting fixture.

The next edition of BDNY will be held at Javits Center, November 10-11, 2024. To receive show and registration email updates, click here.

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