Cre8ing Impact: making a grand entrance

For any commercial project, whether an individual office, large residential building or a mixed-use multi-let building, one of the single most important areas is the entrance and reception. Being the very first place visitors see reception spaces can communicate a lot about a company as well as setting the tone for the rest of the building so it’s essential that they make the right impression.

This year, we’re celebrating the art of creating that all important first impression through our #Cre8ingImpact campaign on social media. Here are just some of the ways we’ve delivered statement reception areas and lift lobbies on some of our most stand-out projects.

One Smart's Place reception

Company branding

First things first, the reception and entranceway is the prime position to proudly display company branding. Whether opting for a subtle approach by drawing on company branding and colours within the interior design or going for a big bold logo, corporate branding is often seen as an integral part of a reception area.

We like to work closely with architects and end clients alike to come up with creative ways to incorporate branding into reception areas and make a statement at the same time. The lightweight real rustic concrete feature wall panelling we installed in the reception area at Imperial House for example, was CNC cut to allow the bespoke brass signage to be inset within it.

Imperial House - CNC cut signage

We can also include company logos or brand messages as part of the reception desk itself – either as a relief logo or inset into the desk, with clever use of lighting drawing people’s  eyes to them.

A warm welcome

Another core part of a reception brief, aside from creating a stand-out design and statement desk, is the need to provide space for visitors to wait to be seen or for small informal meetings. An open and welcoming reception space with additional seating creates the perfect space for staff to meet and greet clients and other visitors.

61 Aldwych reception area

On one recent project, the informal seating space was closed off slightly from the rest of the reception area, to create a defined area and offer a degree of privacy, and we designed and installed unique screen panels to provide the backdrop for the seating area. The bronze spray-painted panels were laser cut with circular holes to allow light to pass through while a street scene with various figures was overlaid over the acrylic backing.

Regal House screen panels

Material choice

As well as communicating key messages about the company itself, the reception area as the main entrance sets the tone for the rest of the building. Drawing on materials and finishes here which have also been used in the rest of the building is an excellent way to tie together different elements of the space and create a cohesive design.

We’re always on the lookout for new materials and finishes, from metals and solid surfacing materials to concrete and glass, alongside more traditional building materials. For example, this reception desk which we designed and installed for a Covent Garden office as part of its recent refurbishment features a unique finish we created by applying chemicals to a cold rolled steel. This speeds up the ageing process which makes it rust slightly to create the distinctive brown-orange finish the architect was looking for.

CapCo reception desk

Stylish storage solutions

It’s vital to keep in mind that a reception area is first and foremost a working space so needs to be practical as well as stylish. There is no escaping the fact that paperwork will be on show, unless provision is made to provide sufficient storage to hide it from the view of visitors.

This is where our wide range of bespoke storage solutions, including our unique Qubewall system, comes into its own. Whether you’re looking for storage incorporated into the reception desk itself, cupboards concealed within wall panelling so it’s completely out of sight, or display cabinets designed to stand-out, our team of designers can provide a storage system tailored around your specific requirements. This bespoke approach ensures you have the best of both worlds – a practical workspace that makes a lasting impression on visitors.

Berners Street reception

If you’d like us to help you create that all important first impression with a statement reception area we’d love to hear from you.

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