World Architectural Festival Virtual 2020 sponsored by GROHE

World Architectural Festival Virtual 2020 sponsored by GROHE brought together the global architecture community to discuss “Living with Pandemics”

  • From 30 November – 4 December architects and design professionals engaged virtually in live content, special prizes, talks, panel discussions & networking events
  • GROHE experts also took part in sessions on prefabricated housing, touchless product solutions and 3D technology
  • Free registration was open to all journalists, architects and designers  

Dubai, 08 December 2020. GROHE, a leading global brand for complete bathroom solutions and kitchen fittings and founder sponsor of the World Architecture Festival (WAF), will continue the sponsorship of the WAF for the 12th year in a row. Due to the unprecedented Covid-19 situation, this year’s edition took place as a virtual event with completely new and exciting formats focussing on the main topic “Living with Pandemics”: From 30th November until 04th December live content, talks, panel discussions and networking opportunities fostered the professional exchange between architects and designers all around the world. The community was attended by renowned keynote speakers such as Jeanne Gang of Studio Gang, Sir David Adjaye of Adjaye Associates, Ben Van Berkel of UNStudio and Sir Peter Cook.

GROHE did not only award this year’s winner of the Water Research Prize, honoring initiatives which investigate the architectural implications of water in respect of buildings or the built environment on December 2nd but also contributed to the live sessions at WAFVirtual:

Monday, November 30th 10:35-11:15 am (GMT) | Factory-Made to Measure

How can designers and manufacturers exploit the possibilities of digital design and construction to create buildings focused on health and well-being?

James Pickard, Founding Director, Cartwright Pickard

Karl Lennon, Director A&D Accounts EMENA, Grohe AG / LIXIL EMENA

Wednesday, December 2nd 9:10-9:50 am (GMT) | GROHE Water Research Prize

Announcement of this year’s winner and Q&A session

Patrick Speck, Vice President LIXIL Global Design and Consumer Experience EMENA

Friday, December 4th 13:20-14:00 pm (GMT) | Rooms with a Point of View

Hotel designers are taking steps to ensure safe distancing rather than density. How is the challenge progressing?

Richard McConkey, Head of Hospitality & Associate Director, Universal Design Studio

Tom Ito, Global Hospitality Practice Director, Gensler

Pascale Porro, Director Hotel Accounts EMENA, Grohe AG / LIXIL EMENA

Federico Toresi, Global VP Design Premium & Luxury Brands, Accor

On demand | CPD session on 3D printing

GROHE is the first leading sanitary brand in Europe to employ the use of 3D metal-printing manufacturing techniques. The CPD module considers 3D printing in general terms – what it is, different techniques and materials used, areas of application, manufacturing and environmental impacts.

Karl Lennon, Director A&D Accounts EMENA, Grohe AG / LIXIL EMENA

“Being the founding member of the World Architecture Festival and supporting it for the last twelve years, we are delighted to see that WAF has developed into a must-attend event for the global architecture community” said Stefan Schmied, Vice President Global Projects Grohe AG.

“We were excited to participate in the virtual transformation of the festival and discuss the challenge for hotel designers to ensure safe distancing in hospitality and also how designers and manufacturers can realise the possibilities of digital design and construction to create buildings focused on health and well-being.”

Paul Flowers, Leader, LIXIL Global Design added: “It is more important than ever for designers and architects to share ideas and collaborate. GROHE is immensely proud to support WAF for the 12th year and its first virtual festival to engage in these discussions and foster professional exchange. Only together can we make impactful change on the holistic experiences we create.” 

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GROHE is a leading global brand for complete bathroom solutions and kitchen fittings and has a total of over 6,500 employees in 150 countries – 2,600 of them are based in Germany. Since 2014 GROHE has been part of the strong brand portfolio of the Japanese manufacturer of pioneering water and housing products LIXIL. In order to offer “Pure Freude an Wasser”, every GROHE product is based on the brand values of quality, technology, design and sustainability. Renowned highlights such as GROHE Eurosmart or the GROHE thermostat series as well as groundbreaking innovations such as the GROHE Blue water system underline the brand’s profound expertise. Focused on customer needs, GROHE thus creates intelligent, life-enhancing and sustainable product solutions that offer relevant added value – and bear the “Made in Germany” seal of quality: R&D and design are firmly anchored as an integrated process in Germany. GROHE takes its corporate responsibility very seriously and focuses on a resource-saving value chain. Since April 2020, the sanitary brand has been producing CO2-neutral worldwide. GROHE has also set itself the goal of using plastic-free product packaging by 2021.

In the past ten years alone, more than 460 design and innovation awards as well as several top rankings at the German Sustainability Award have confirmed GROHE’s success. GROHE was the first in its industry to win the CSR Award of the German Federal Government and was also featured in the renowned Fortune® magazine’s ranking of Top 50 that are “Changing the World”.


LIXIL makes pioneering water and housing products that solve every day, real-life challenges, making better homes a reality for everyone, everywhere. Drawing on our Japanese heritage, we create world-leading technology and innovate to make high quality products that transform homes. But the LIXIL difference is how we do this; through meaningful design, an entrepreneurial spirit, a dedication to improving accessibility for all and responsible business growth. Our approach comes to life through industry leading brands, including INAX, GROHE, American Standard and TOSTEM. Over 70,000 colleagues operating in more than 150 countries are proud to make products that touch the lives of more than a billion people every day. Learn more at

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