Left: International Conference Center, Dakar Middle: Umkhumbane Museum, South Africa, Right: One Airport Square, Ghana

On Thursday the 28th of September, some of Africa’s greatest architects were honoured for their continued work in propelling excellence in architecture on the continent.

The ceremony, founded and sponsored by Saint Gobain was appropriately held at the newly opened architectural marvel that is the Zeitz Museum Of Contemporary Art Africa in Cape Town.

Sir David Adjaye, one of the leading voices in the world of architecture and a member 0f prestigious steering panel for the awards was not present on the evening, but his words around the importance of the African Architecture Awards were addressed to those in attendance: “Now is the time to promote excellence and best practice on the continent” , a sentiment that captured the mood of the whole evening.  Over 130 VIP guests hailing from all across the continent were hosted by MC, Bongani Bingwa at an illustrious dinner setting.


The award categories were as follows: Critical Dialogue, Speculative, People’s Choice, Emerging Voices and Built Categories.

Dr Mark Olweny
Critical dialogue winner Forum De Arquitecttura Entrant: Ceica, Angola
The Territory In-between, Cape Verde – by Guinea’s Aissata Balde, Graduate School of Architecture, University of Johannesburg
Ndeshipanda Lita and Elao Martin- Emerging voices winners for architecture of crisis: Windhoek community boreholes architect

The grandest award of the night, the inaugural Grand Prix is awarded to the project that most reflects the objective of the African Architecture awards, this to inspire the future of African architecture. The Grand Prix winner of the evening was Umkhumbane Museum, South Africa by Choromanski Architects which received a bespoke trophy and a cash prize of USD$10 000.

Umkhubane Museum, South Africa
Umkhubane Museum, South Africa

Guests also enjoyed an entertainment from, multi-award-winning artist, Tresor.

Tresor – entertainment for the evening

All in all, the evening was a memorable one and the highlight was not so much about the winners but from knowing that there was a room full of dedicated architects contributing to the excellence of African architecture.