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AJ Architecture Awards 2018: Leisure Project of the Year

Leisure Project of the Year is the ‘delightful and generous’ Sportscotland National Centre Inverclyde by Reiach and Hall Architects

Choosing a winner from such an eclectic mix of schemes, ranging from shopping centres and high-end hotels to tennis pavilions, would seem a tricky task. Yet the judges this year were unanimous.

Reiach and Hall, the holder of last year’s AJAA Editor’s Choice award, has pulled off another highly polished scheme showcasing what can be achieved through a tightly knit bond with an intelligent and energetic client.

The £12 million redevelopment of the residential sports training centre in Largs on the Firth of Clyde was praised for the way the architects’ ‘clear and inspiring’ concept and narrative had been delivered on such a low budget, in only two years and on a design and build contract.

The jury was particularly impressed by how a ‘ribbon’ of new accommodation skilfully wrapped and connected the original facilities with the centre’s much-needed additions. 

They said: ‘The contour-hugging ribbon neatly links new and existing, joining double-height sports halls with the six-storey residential block. 

‘The monochrome polycarbonate cladding is subtly textured and, depending upon the weather, either reflects the natural surroundings or fades into them. 

‘Despite huge time pressures and budgetary restrictions (the project cost less than £1,800/m2) the architects held onto their original design ideas for the project.’

This delightful and generous scheme serving both the local community and élite athletes is a worthy winner. 


  • Canoe Lake Leisure Tennis Pavilion by PAD Studio
  • Nobu Hotel by Ben Adams Architects, interiors by Studio Mica
  • The Ned by EPR Architects
  • Westgate Oxford by BDP with Dixon Jones, Allies and Morrison, Panter Hudspith and Glenn Howells Architects
  • Willowbrook Hockey and Tennis Centre by Lewandowski Architects

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