Millson Donates to Face the World Foundation

For the second year in a row, Millson was proud and honoured to attend the 23rd Annual Face the World Foundation Fundraiser, hosted as always by the incomparable Jacqui Cohen. To assist with fundraising, Millson donated a complete CinemaFrame home entertainment system valued at over $25,000 to be included in the live auction. We love the Face the World event because it helps all the smaller grassroots charities here in Vancouver and we like the idea of making a positive impact right here in out own back yard.

The event raised over $1 million dollars this year on another spectacular early summer evening at the Cohen family home. Richard and Heather attended, as well as Millson’s VP of Projects, Mr. Wing Taylor and his lovely wife Erin. Jacqui Cohen is a cherished client and we’re proud and grateful to have been invited to contribute once again to this incredibly worthwhile cause. Also in attendance… author Jackie Collins who donated a fabulous prize along with the Aquilini Investment Group, The Fairmont Pacific Rim, Langara Island Lodge, MCL Motor Cars, The Rennie Collection, Bobby Genovese and countless others. World class generosity for a world class cause.

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Event Announcement


The tent is readied for the evening to come....


Love. That's what it's all about!


A light and bubbly affair


Richard Millson & Heather McDonald


Richard & Heather with Hodie Rondeau, FTW organizer and owner of Xoxlat


Wing Taylor, Millson's VP of Projects, with his wife Erin, enjoying the auction


The weather (and the view) were spectacular. A perfect evening in every way!


Just a few friends getting together for a "back yard" meal.


The Temptations provided truly world class entertainment! They have definitely still got it!


Truly a night to remember


For the second consecutive year, Millson was proud to be a Platinum Sponsor of the Western Living Designer of the Year awards hosted at Vancouver’s historic Salt Building. Every year, Western Living celebrates some of the most dynamic and exciting design professionals on the planet, as well as taking a moment to highlight newcomers worth keeping an eye on. Take a look at some of the esteemed judges and winners here. In addition, Millson debuted its “SIMPLIFY” campaign animation, which you can view here. Below you can check out a few images from this fun and exciting night.

The 2012 Western Living Designers of the Year awards were held in the historic "Salt Building" providing the perfect setting for this highly anticipated Gala

Millson provided a temporary installation for the evening that included a working fireplace and the one-of-a-kind CinemaFrame. The Paul Smith designer fabric by Maharam was a nice touch for an evening focused on celebrating design.

Corinne Gillespie of Western Living Magazine and Heather McDonald of Millson pose for the paparazzi.

Trish Almeida (left) of IDS West and Heather McDonald of Millson celebrate with Kerry Johnson (left) and Ian McLeod of Johnson/McLeod Design Consultants

Anicka Quin, Editor In Chief of Western Living Magazine, welcomes the crowd

At the end of September, we were excited to find ourselves back at the Vancouver Trade & Convention Centre for our 3rd consecutive year exhibiting at IDS West. And much to our delight, 2012 proved to be our biggest turnout ever, with crowds in our booth extending to 30 people deep at times and visitors posting record shout-outs to us on Facebook and Twitter. It’s been really incredible to watch this event grow every year and we repeatedly saw posts informing followers that both the Millson booth and CinemaFrame were “must-see’s” at the show.

Once again, we were proud and honoured to partner with our dear friends at Inform Interiors who generously furnished our booth with a collection of world class furniture and accessories. Inform also put on another stunning display right across the isle from us, in what had to be one of the most interesting and well executed booths in the entire show. Living Space, Bocci Bar, and Fisker of Vancouver were just a few of the other notable sponsors for this world class design focused event.

In chatting with both returning visitors and first-time attendees, we learned that many had heard about CinemaFrame or seen our ad campaigns in Western Living Magazine and had attended the show with the idea of seeking us out. For those trying to find us on the enourmous show floor, there is no doubt that our unmistakable “balloon” signage made it oh-so-easy! Below are a few shots from the show.  If you were not able to make it this year, we look forward to seeing you at IDS West 2013.

Our booth was designed to create a luxurious living room environment complete with a backlit outdoor views through the windows, a working fireplace and CinemaFrame at the centre of it all.

One of the best things about CinemaFrame is the fact that you can select from over 300 designer fabrics for the "frame" that surrounds the TV, allowing you to personalize CinemaFrame for just the right look.

Richard Millson demonstrates the incredible picture quality and amazing surround sound of CinemaFrame for a crowd of captivated onlookers. Now, where are those speakers hidden again?

Richard Millson demonstrates how easy it is to control CinemaFrame, the automated roller shades (or any of the technology in your home) from a single Millson remote (or from an iPhone or iPad)

This wasn't part of the IDS West event, but this is how CinemaFrame looks once installed. Clean, simple and elegant with no sign that hidden inside the standard depth wall, right behind the TV, is an entire home cinema system including all speakers and electronics.

We launched this "Millson Balloon" high above our booth to help folks find us on the expansive IDS West show floor and based on the crowds in our booth, it's safe to say that it worked like a charm.

Electronic Lifestyles Magazine took a few pages out of their Fall 2012 issue (CEDIA Expo Edition) to explore some of the challenges and complexities involved with integrating technology in condominium towers.  The magazine reached out to Richard Millson for his insights based on his firms reputation for having delivered these exact kinds of solutions in more than a dozen landmark tower projects in Vancouver.  In many ways, Millson became the company it is today by navigating the unique challenges posed by outfitting high-rise developments. Richard provides ELM with the insider details and dicusses the importance of both understanding and balancing the expectations of developers, home buyers, the construction trades and more.

Millson was proud and honoured to be one of the premiere sponsors for the 10th Anniversary Odlum Brown Vancouver Open at the Hollyburn Country Club. This event, near and dear to our hearts, has continued to grow in both attendance and stature, having hosted a long list of now-famous tennis alumni including Maria Sharapova, Andy Murray and Marcos Bagdahtis to name just a few. This year, Millson provided the scoreboard and sound system for the event, both of which added to the world class experience for both the players and fans. With a nod to the beginning of his career, Richard Millson played DJ for a couple of evenings during the tournament, providing some bumping tunes between sets and matches. A true highlight of the event this year was the appearance of former women’s world #1 Martina Hingis to headline an exhibition match as she launched her new “Tonic” tennis clothing line, sure to be a huge success. All in all a fantastic event for Vancouver, and for tennis fans especially, which includes a bunch of us here at Millson. We were delighted to be a part of this amazing event and look forward to next year.

Opening Ceremonies with Martina Hingis. Photo by Yeit Chong.

The weather was perfect all week - Photo by Bo Kwan


The event features both singles and doubles events for men and women - Photo by Bo Kwan


Martina Hingis takes a break at the net in her highly entertaining exhibition match - Photo by Bo Kwan


Promising Canadian Frank Dancevic was all focus and all business - Photo by Bo Kwan.






On the first Saturday in June, we were delighted to attend the 22nd Annual Face The World Foundation Black Tie Gala at the home of Jacqui Cohen. Ms. Cohen is the co-founder and president of the Face The World Foundation and CEO of Army & Navy Department Stores.  As one of Vancouver’s most successful and prominent charity organizations, Face The World has raised funding for countless deserving local charities in BC and this year’s gala and auction proved another huge success, raising over 1 million dollars in a single night!  Millson provided support for this extremely worthwhile cause first as “Angel” sponsors with a donation of $5,000 and secondly with a donation for the live auction of one of our very latest innovations: CinemaFrame, the world’s first luxury home cinema system.  Interest was high among the assembled guests with the final bid raising a healthy $23,000 for the foundation.

This once-a-year event is a true highlight on Vancouver’s social calendar, with a guest list that always includes a veritable who’s who of Vancouver’s most successful and well-heeled citizens.  Special guests this year included KISS front man and reality TV star Gene Simmons, his wife Shannon Tweed and their two children Nick and Sophie, both of whom thrilled the crowd with live musical performances after dinner.  Millson is proud and honored to have been selected to provide custom technology solutions for Ms. Cohen’s residences, and delighted at the opportunity to work with renowned architect and designer Russell Hollingsworth on these magnificent homes.



Richard Millson and Heather McDonald of Millson Technologies


Jacqui Cohen and Shannon Tweed Simmons enjoy the festivities



Jacqui Cohen and Gene Simmons… this was a night to see and be seen



Jaqui, stunning as always, welcomes guests to the 22nd annual Face The World gala



The grounds of this magnificent home were transformed for the party of the season


Bocci provided the heavenly lighting that floated above guests at dinner and donated these amazing light sculptures for the auction


The stage was set for live performances by Nick and Sophie Simmons after dinner, in what had to be the coolest private club in town



Festivities getting the best of you? You could always chill out here for a bit…



Harry Kambolis and his team at C Catering created a world class dining experience


These stunning floral arrangements were just part of the elegant and magical atmosphere created by Simon Cooksley Event Design


MCL MotorCars donated the use of this 2012 Bentley Continental GT Convertible for a year, with the insurance provided by AllWest Insurance.


Inform continues to wow us with yet another milestone: the opening of a stunning new 14,000 square foot, two level showroom appropriately named Inform to the Trade.  The new space will be focused primarily toward commercial projects representing an exciting new resource for property developers, architects and other design professionals. The space itself presents a clean, architecturally elegant and open plan, creating an almost gallery like environment in which to showcase many of the world’s finest brands of interior furnishings. Millson is proud to be the preferred technology partner of Inform Interiors, and we wish Neils and Nancy much success on their newest addition to the Inform family. If it’s anything like the impressive list of successful and well managed business units they have already created, there is little doubt that Inform To The Trade will become yet another shining star in Vancouver’s vibrant design community.

Invitation to the Opening Celebration

Lighting as sculpture or sculpture as light?

The simple genius of lighting by Artemide

The worlds finest brands, all in one place

Furniture and Lighting from Fontana Arte

A full house for this happening event

Flower Power

A clean, simple and beautiful space to showcase the world's finest home furnishings.

Internationally renown artist Stan Douglas played guest DJ. He kept the music flowing and the party happening


Links to the amazing friends who helped make this event such a huge success:

Vancouver Urban Library,  2 Chefs and a TableThe UnionMain Street Brewing Co.


Last month, we attended The Urban Development Institute’s Annual General Meeting and were once again captivated by one of our favourite speakers. Our good friend and Vancouver real estate marketing icon, Bob Rennie, addressed a capacity crowd of over 800 UDI members and guests at the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver. We expected no less — Bob is one of the most interesting and engaging public speakers we have ever seen. His deep knowledge of real estate in Vancouver, throughout Canada and around the world is second to none. Vancouver’s business elite were in attendance including developers, bankers, realtors and more, to hear Bob’s analysis of the real estate market in Vancouver. Bob’s presentation was informative, insightful and filled with statistical analysis to support his many insights and predictions. Despite the information rich nature of the presentation, Bob managed to deliver it all in a clear and at times even entertaining way.  The main take-away of the afternoon was a well supported argument against the idea that Vancouver is experiencing a real estate bubble. “It’s not a bubble,” said Rennie. “For 80 percent of the condominiums sold in Metro Vancouver last year, buyers only needed a household income of $52,800 to purchase. That’s not a bubble story.”

Millson has had the great fortune to collaborate with Rennie Marketing Systems on a multitude of high profile projects including The Residences on Georgia, One Wall Centre, Shaw Tower, Living Shangri-la, Fairmont Pacific Rim Estates, Woodward’s District and the recent Wing Sang Gallery.

Read more about Rennie’s thoughts on the changing market in Vancouver here.


Now here’s an event we just had to share: Last month, Interior Design Magazine secured the entire iconic Parker Hotel in Palm Springs for three days to serve as a stunning headquarters for the first annual Giants of Design conference.

Widely regarded as the design industry’s “bible”, ID mined extensive research on the size, fees, projects and practices, current work, etc. to identify what they call the “Top 100 Giants” of the industry.  Every one of these firms as well as other top designers and architects were invited to descend for a weekend of game-changing presentations, panel discussions, private events, and more.

This year the list surprised everyone — including the “giants” themselves. Design fees soared and originality ruled. Accordingly, the high-level topics explored at the conference broke boundaries as well, moving past the regional and familiar into global ideas, what the future will bring, the arts, communication, and design intelligence and more.We congratulate ID Magazine on their commitment to recognizing and celebrating design in all its forms through this amazing event and look forward to seeing who makes the list for next year.

Here a few examples of some of this year’s winner’s work:

Lest one think we only read the cover article, we’d like to draw your attention to another local inspiration mentioned in this month’s issue of Montecristo Magazine: Neils Bendtsen of Inform Interiors. The informative article provides a great perspective on the long and distinguished career of Niels Bendtsen, beginning with the opening of his first retail store featuring original furniture designs almost 50 years ago, right here in Vancouver.  With a design-focused career spanning decades, you might expect a body of work that has shifted to echo the design trends of the moment. Not so with Mr. Bendtsen. From initial sketch to finished product, Niels’ work has exhibited a consistently simple, elegant and purposeful voice while maintaining an understated sophistication. His hands-on approach, relentless attention to detail and personal involvement from prototype to production are the foundation of his success, and attributes we have the utmost respect for. Be sure to read the full article here.