DFA Awards

DFA Awards Announces 2017 Winners

Talents from around the globe have been awarded the followings: one DFA Lifetime Achievement Award, one DFA Design Leadership Award, one DFA World’s Outstanding Chinese Designer, 186 DFA Design for Asia Awards and 17 DFA Hong Kong Young Design Talent Award.

DFA Awards Announces 2017 Winners

Showcasing The Greatest Talents and Projects

(HONG KONG, 31 October 2017) As a hub of creative talents, Hong Kong paves the way for design industry and celebrates those who push creative boundaries. This year, DFA Awards recognizes over 200 creative talents and the most innovative design projects with the potential to improve the quality and vibrancy of life in Asia through the creation of globally sustainable ideas. The DFA Awards, through its five major award programmes, is highly recognized among local and international design professionals and experts.

Talents from around the globe have been awarded the followings: one DFA Lifetime Achievement Award, one DFA Design Leadership Award, one DFA World’s Outstanding Chinese Designer, 186 DFA Design for Asia Awards and 17 DFA Hong Kong Young Design Talent Award.

Organised by The Hong Kong Design Centre (HKDC) with Create Hong Kong of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government as the major sponsor, DFA Awards presentation ceremonies will take place on 6 and 8 December 2017 at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre. The Awards offers a stage to some of the most dedicated talents, encouraging the growth of creative industry and providing a platform to establish networks with influential designers and business leaders.

“The mission of the Hong Kong Design Centre is to celebrate talents and good designs that improve quality of life, promote social innovation and preserve cultural heritage. After decade-long efforts, the Awards has become one of the most prestigious and important awards in the design industry, and we are delighted to see so many entries that were aimed to address environmental and sustainability issues. This year, the DFA Design for Asia Awards saw a 15% increase in submissions, while the DFA Hong Kong Young Design Talent Award received a rise of 9% in submissions.” said Professor Eric Yim, Chairman of the HKDC.

Honours to Design Giants

Design is beyond aesthetics, and it presents an attitude, innovative thinking and creative confidence by the designers. The DFA Awards underpins the roles of designers in society and to celebrate design leadership and exemplary design in Asia. As the highest honour and recognition to design leaders, the DFA Lifetime Achievement Award 2017 is conferred to the international acclaimed fashion designer Mr. Yohji YAMAMOTO, while the DFA Design Leadership Award 2017 goes to the influential hospitality leader Mr. Adrian ZECHA, and the communication design giant Mr. Alan CHAN is honoured with the DFA World’s Outstanding Chinese Designer.

DFA Lifetime Achievement Award (DFA LAA)

The Award recognizes an individual who has made life-long contributions to the design profession, with visionary shaping designs across a variety of fields, and who uses design to educate and promote wider use of design in society.





For 45 years, YAMAMOTO has been working in the fashion industry. Renowned for his avant-garde style, his unique designs have graced international runways since his debut in Tokyo in 1977. He presented his first collection in Paris in 1981. In 2002, he was appointed as the creative director for Y-3. YAMAMOTO’s dedication to the fashion industry has been recognized the world over and awarded lots of honors including the Commander of the Order of Arts and Letters, the highest honor in arts and culture in France.


DFA Design Leadership Award (DFA DLA)

The Award is presented to a corporate leader who consistently demonstrates outstanding business performance, supports the design development in his organization and the international community.

Adrian ZECHA Non-executive Chairman of General Hotel Management Founder of Azerai Hotels Founder of Amanresorts
Adrian ZECHA

ZECHA is one of the world’s leading creators and operators of award-winning, distinctive luxury hotels and resorts. As the founder of world famous Aman Resorts, and in a career spanning more than 45 years, he has founded a series of hotel management companies and conceived and developed more than one hundred hotels. He is recognized globally as one of the foremost visionaries within the hospitality industry. In 2017, ZECHA and his team under a new management structure, launched Azerai, a hotel brand positioned as a new benchmark in affordable luxury.


DFA World’s Outstanding Chinese Designer (DFA WOCD)

It awards a Chinese designer who has an exceptional track record for quality and success, is involved in academic exploration or practical application, and displays a strong social conscience.


Designer, Brand Consultant and Artist
Founder of Alan Chan Design Company

CHAN started his career in the advertising industry as design apprentice in 1970, and attended a 10-month design course in evening school after graduating from secondary school, before starting his own company in 1980. As a designer, brand consultant and artist, CHAN and his company have won more than 600 local and international awards during his 47 years in advertising and design. The ‘Oriental Passion Western Harmony’ design philosophy he initiated has been well-recognized by the international design scene, and has had a major influence on younger generations of designers.


Salutation to Design Excellence

The DFA Design for Asia Awards aims to raise awareness about the value of good design as an essential component in quality of life for a betterment. Measured by four perspectives, namely, impact in Asia, overall excellence, use of technology, as well as commercial and societal success, it appreciates and celebrates the designs that embodies Asian aesthetics and affects the world so as to bring about new design trends.

 In 2017, it received more than 1,000 entries from over 23 economies, a reflection of the awards prestige and the growth of Asian design power, with the highest entry number from Mainland China and closely followed by Hong Kong. The judging panel comprised of industry leaders and experts recognized 186 design projects for their design excellence, including 16 Grand Awards and 170 awards from four design disciplines (a total of 26 categories) in Category Award, while Japan tops the leaderboard, followed by Mainland China and Hong Kong.

Cultivating New Design Force

As the design hub in Asia, Hong Kong is always a window to the international stage and the DFA Hong Kong Young Design Talent Award (DFA HKYDTA) is an important platform recognizing local young design talents, aged 35 or below, and serving to maintain the city’s competitiveness. This year, 17 design practitioners or graduates are awarded. 13 out of the 17 awardees will receive a financial sponsorship amount up to HKD500,000 for six-to-twelve-month overseas work attachment or study to further stimulate design thinking and thus contributing to Hong Kong’s ever-expanding creative industry upon return.

DFA Awards events in December 2017:

6 Dec         Presentation Ceremony of DFA Design for Asia Awards & DFA Hong Kong Young Design Talent Award

7 Dec         DFA: Design for Asia Summit at Business of Design Week

8 Dec         Presentation Ceremony of DFA Lifetime Achievement Award, DFA Design Leadership Award and DFA World’s Outstanding Chinese Designer

7-9 Dec     DFA Awards exhibition at DesignInspire at Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre

About DFA Awards

In 2003, the Hong Kong Design Centre launched the DFA Awards to underpin the role of designers in society, to celebrate design excellence with impact in Asia and for Asia, as well as to recognise the rising force of emerging designers in Hong Kong through its five-major award programmes – The DFA Lifetime Achievement Award signifies the design community’s respect for individuals who have made life-long contributions to design profession, education, and the society. The DFA Design Leadership Award recognizes business leaders who create exceptional sustainable business success through the strategic and innovative use of design. The DFA World’s Outstanding Chinese Designer is a major accolade for designers of Chinese origin with significant design achievement and international recognition. The DFA Design for Asia Awards covers a wide range of design that embodies Asian aesthetics and culture and influences the design trends in Asia and for Asia. The DFA Hong Kong Young Design Talent Award nurtures the development of local emerging designers and provides sponsorship for them to undertake work or further education overseas.


 About Hong Kong Design Centre

Hong Kong Design Centre (HKDC) is a non-profit organisation founded in 2001 as a strategic partner of the HKSAR Government in establishing Hong Kong as centre of design excellence in Asia. HKDC pursues its public mission in using design and innovation to drive the value creation of business development and improve the well-being of society through the provision of diverse innovation-oriented knowledge sharing and by providing diverse exchange platforms, anchored by five major work directions: CONNECT, CELEBRATE, NURTUREADVANCE and ENGAGE.

HKDC’s flagship programmes include Business of Design Week (since 2002) – Asia’s leading annual conference and event on Design, Innovation and Brands; the DFA Awards (since 2003) – the most recognised design awards from an Asian perspective; the Design Incubation Programme (since 2012) andFashion Incubation Programme (since 2016) – a two-year incubation programme to nurture future design and fashion entrepreneurs; Fashion Asia Hong Kong (since 2016) – a new initiative combining conversations, interactions and cultural exchanges to energise the city’s image, and positioning it as an Asian hub for fashion trade and business development; and Knowledge of Design Week (since 2006) – an annual thematic design knowledge sharing platform on how design can solve the complex challenges facing our society.


Media Contacts

For more information or to request interviews, please contact Sinclair at +852 2915 1234

Sai Roshini Daswani | sairoshini@sinclaircomms.com I +852 9750 3229
Hannah Hodson | hannah@sinclaircomms.com | +852 9826 6193
Wing Ng | wing@sinclaircomms.com | +852 6106 8695

Hong Kong Design Centre:

Kiki Fung | kiki.fung@hkdesigncentre.org | + 852 3793 8450
Ivan Kwok | ivan.kwok@hkdesigncentre.org | +852 3793 8445

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