gardiente Award

This year, we’ll once again be presenting the “gardiente Outdoor Living Awards”. On the evening of “gardiente night”, the three best placed products will be selected by our jury of experts. Meike Harde and Patrick Ledoux will be joining our jury for the first time. We’re delighted and are excited to see who’ll be taking home this year’s coveted prize.


Our new expert jurors 2019


Meike Harde

Studio Meike Harde, Cologne

Born in south-west Germany and based in Cologne, designer Meike Harde established her studio in 2013. When she first set out, she received several newcomer awards and took part in a variety of exhibitions, for example, at the Holon Museum of Design in Tel Aviv. Since around 2015, she has placed several furniture and lighting designs with reputed companies such as Pulpo, Bolia, Freistil Rolf Benz and Fest Amsterdam. Stylistically, she pursues a light and sometimes richly detailed design vocabulary. The focus tends to fall on the natural properties of the chosen materials which then become an intrinsic element of each formal composition.

Patrick Ledoux

Chief Editor of Meubihome

The Belgian journalist Patrick Ledoux is working for almost 25 years as a chief editor for the Belgian b-to-b business magazine Meubihome. This magazine is the main Benelux title in the professional branch of furniture, living accessories and lighting.
Patrick Ledoux was born in Roeselare and lives near Brussels. In 2004 he founded Damn° Magazine, an international high end magazine on art, design and architecture, globally distributed in a fysical version and with a strong online presence.
Patrick likes the outdoor life and is actually training as a winemaker, aiming to make white and red wine from 2020 onwards on a vineyard near Brussels.

Marcus Hofbauer

Architect BDA, Mainz

Born in 1967, Marcus Hofbauer lives and works in Mainz am Rhein, Germany.
He completed his degree in architecture at the Technical University of Kaiserslautern and the Technical University of Darmstadt. In 1998, Marcus Hofbauer started out as a self-employed architect in Mainz, creating holistic architecture and interior design solutions, as well as space and design concepts with a focus on furniture design.
In 2002, Marcus Hofbauer became a member of the German association of architects BDA Landesverband Rheinland- Pfalz. In 2018, whilst still working as an architect, he established Mogunto GmbH, a design company specialising in timeless occasional furniture and accessories from Mainz. Since 2018, Marcus Hofbauer has also been a visiting lecturer on the interior design programme at the School of Design, University of Applied Sciences, in Mainz.

Helmut »Max« Merkel

Editor-in-chief MÖBELMARKT

The journalist Helmut “Max” Merkel has been specialising in the furniture sector since 1982. In 1988, he started working for the German furniture trade magazine MÖBELMARKT. From 1992 to 1999, he was co-owner of a PR agency for furniture manufacturers, buying groups and furniture retailers. He then returned to MÖBELMARKT as editor-in-chief (international). In 2008, he also assumed the role of CEO for CRP Consulting Ritthammer & Partners, a service and consulting company specialising in the international furniture sector.

Prof. Jan Armgardt

Jan Armgardt Design, Schondorf

Born in 1947, Jan Armgardt lives and works in Schondorf by Lake Ammersee. He looks back, among others, on an apprenticeship as a furniture maker, a degree in architecture and interior design and a traineeship with a furniture store. He founded his own furniture design studio and various small mail order companies for furniture. He has also held numerous exhibitions both in Germany and abroad as well as workshops at universities in Germany, the Philippines (2006) and Turkey (2007 | 2008 | 2010). Jan Armgardt has taught at the Coburg University of Applied Sciences and the Staatliche Korbfachschule in Lichtenfels and is currently a professor at the Aachen University of Applied Sciences. The designer has received more than 40 international awards for a diversity of products and has extensive experience as a jury member.

Bianca Schmidt

publisher of the special interest title InteriorFashion

Born in 1971, Bianca Schmidt studied Business Administration at the Coburg University of Applied Sciences. She more or less stumbled into journalism which soon proved to be her true vocation. After 15 years as an editor with the German trade magazine MÖBELMARKT, she decided to become self-employed at the beginning of 2016. She now publishes the special interest title InteriorFashion which focuses on high-end furnishings in the private and contract business sectors and primarily targets interior designers, furnishing contractors and high-end furniture stores involved in interior planning and design.

The winners and some impressions of the award ceremony 2018


The main highlight last year was the presentation of the “gardiente Outdoor Living Awards”. Around half of all exhibitors had entered their innovations from the fields of garden furniture, sun shades, BBQs, textiles and accessories for a chance to win this coveted accolade.

Aesthetics, design, innovation, functionality and sustainability were assessed. The jury of experts made a pre-selection of all entries, which were presented in the TrendArea during the gardiente.


Photo: © Simon Veith – nachhaltige Fotografie

Coming in third place in 2017, last year Italian furniture manufacturer Nardi clinched the Gold Award for its modular outdoor lounge “Komodo”.

This innovative set had already caused quite a sensation at the Milan furniture fair, impressing visitors with its functionality and versatility. “Komodo comprises three elements, which can transform in a few simple steps from an armchair into a table or an entire lounge. The back and arm rests are easy to click into place, making it an incredibly flexible system. The polypropylene can be completely recycled and, around 15 to 20 years after being used in the furniture for the first time, it can be transformed into new furniture or other products,” explains Stefan Pfaff of Nardi. Managing Director Anna Nardi travelled especially to gardiente to receive the award.


The Outdoor Living Award in Silver went to the multi-functional “Premium Sunshade Pendel” from Doppler/Knirps, a product characterised by functionality and ease of use.

Jürgen Schmeller, Doppler, commented: “Light weight, quality and easy handling were among the main priorities in designing our Premium Sunshade Pendel. We’re really proud of it.”

The Bronze Award was presented to the “Cube” fire basket from höfats.

Highlighting the attributes of this product, Rainer Danner, höfats, explained: “If you want to stifle the fire, you simply turn the Cube over – obeying the laws of gravity, the fire tray always remains level. When the “Cube” isn’t on fire, it can be used as a stool or a side table – it’s a really versatile and useful piece of outdoor furniture. Also, in the age of e-commerce, the cube can easily be packaged and sent by post.”

In addition to the official prize winners, the jury of experts also issued “honorary commendations” for the “Antibes” chair series from ScanCom and the “Circus” side table made from recycled teak by Jan Kurtz.


These are the nominees of 2018 with their innovations from the fields of garden furniture, parasols, BBQ, textiles and accessories:

Amazonas, Doppler/Knirps, Jan Kurtz, Hartman, H. Gautzsch/Siena Garden, höfats, Karasek, Nardi, Scancom, Stern, Weber and Zebra.



Here you can have a look at the emotional award ceremony of the gardiente 2017.