A set of red-lipped urinals, designed by a female artist, installed in the men’s toilets at a Sydney restaurant and bar have taken out the prize for best bathroom at the 2014 AHA NSW Awards for Excellence.
When the “Kisses” urinals where first mentioned in a restaurant review of Ananas Bar and Brasserie in The Rocks two years ago, it sparked claims of misogyny by prominent commentator Dr Anne Summers.
The venue responded by promising to remove the $1150 toilets, designed by Dutch artist Meike van Schijndel, and inspired by The Rolling Stones lips logo, but re-installed them six months later following overwhelming “public support”.
The Kisses design has proved popular around the world and van Schijndel has even set up a Facebook page which has more than 25,000 followers.
Ananas owners Urban Purveyor Group, which also runs restaurants such as Sake, The Cut, Lowenbrau Keller and Bavarian Beer Cafe, took out the new award for best bathroom at the state-based Australian Hotel Awards.
Pub of the year went to The Oaks Hotel in Neutral Bay, while the Kooringal Hotel in Wagga Wagga took out best country pub as well as best redeveloped/new hotel. Hotel Centennial, Woollahra was named the city’s best redeveloped/new hotel.
On the food front, the Sydney outpost of hot New York chef David Chang, Momofuku Seiobo at The Star was named best fine dining, while Urban Purveyor Group’s modern Japanese, Sake, was named best city restaurant and Graze at the Willow Tree Inn, best country restaurant.
Best casual dining is split into regional categories and the winners included the Coogee Bay Hotel, the Longueville Hotel in Lane Cove, The Riverview Hotel, Balmain, and the Rocksia Hotel in Arncliffe.
Hunters Hill Hotel scored best burger while the Hibernian Hotel in Goulburn nabbed best steak.
The reborn Potts Point institution The Bourbon was declared the best cocktail/lounge bar and the HPH Hotel, Pennant Hills best traditional hotel bar.
Best boutique beer offering went to the Potters Hotel Brewery Resort in the Hunter Vallery and Sackville Hotel, Rozelle, was named best retail liquor outlet.
Best family friendly hotel went to The Ettamogah, Kellyville Ridge, and best outdoor facility to Watsons Bay Boutique Hotel.
Justin Hemmes’ Merivale group picked up several awards, with est’s Peter Doyle named chef of the year, Andrew El-Bayeh declared industry rising star and Peter Tavernese, apprentice of the year. The ‘March into Merivale Food & Wine Festival’ took out best promotional concept.
Two hat chef Michael Urquhart of Bonville Golf Resort’s Flooded Gums restaurant was named rising star.
North Sydney’s Union Hotel scored best sports bar.
The full list of winners is here.
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