Last fall Russia's fourth annual Building Award was given at the conclusion of that country's annual Building Festival. According to the Peter Kudryavtsev, the CEO of Building, and the editor-in-chief of the magazine Building ARX, “The purpose of the award is not just to find architectural beauty. It is also to to encourage buildings that work for customers, property owners, make residents and tenants happy, and that function well in the context of the city.”

Click on the slide show icon to see photos of the winner and runners-up.

The award goes to the best Russian building constructed over the last seven years. To be eligible, the building must have been in use for at least the last year. Kudryavtsev says, “We are raising the bar for excellence in all Russian architecture.”

The selection process is somewhat different than that used for awards programs in the U.S. Each of the jury members nominates a favorite project, which is then presented by its architect at a public event.

The $50,000 prize winner was chosen by Peter Shura, the CEO of RusResorts, the sponsor of the awards, and won by Sergy Kiselev & Partners and its developer Forum for Hermitage Plaza. The brick-and-glass-clad Moscow office complex overlooks a plaza that is unusually large by Moscow standards.

The finalists were: The Red Guest House, by Totan Kuzembaev; Molochnyi Dom by Project Meganom; Mercury Theatre by Project Meganom; Peter Fomenko's Workshop by Sergey Gnedovsky; and Copper House by Sergei Skuratov Architects.