Our conceptual thinking influenced numerous relationships between the renovation’s modern design, and its connection to the HFN’s preserved, classical 36-year heritage, providing a truly timeless architecture.
HFN’s shift from their previous 3000sqm horizontal plan offices to a new vertical system comprised of 16 stories underpinned our design concept to conceive each floor as a different layer in the company’s narrative—as well as projecting its future— creating a sense of discovery for clients and staff members.
The first floor serves as the main client-facing interface. The space conveys professionalism through elegant, precise geometry. The corridor access is a transitional space, hosting a composition of lattice vertical and horizontal elements, which vary according to what we want to highlight, either the angular intimate seating booths or the office partitions. The wooden lattice acts as a skin, designed to either reveal or conceal the textures integrated within the different planes of the room, using artificial lighting to link the spaces and create a homogeneous whole. We connected the same language and rhythm to the architectural treatment of the offices through the creation of bespoke offices furnishings; a series of custom-made dressers and tables combining porcelain granite, oak and elegant brass finishes.
Although rich in design, the remaining private office floors preserve a clean look using more common materials, fit-for-budget and durable, where the issue of longevity, usability and attrition is more relevant.
The fourth floor Cafeteria serves as an American diner and community hub to promote a sense of familiarity and connection. In search of a meaningful integration of shape, color, and texture, a circular, lattice skin surrounds the dining booths linking the different planes of the room. The wrap is expressed in oak wood to contrast with the bright seating colors, and to create juxtaposition of textures that visually softens the space.
Thinking about sustainability and energy efficiency, our focus was to plan the daylight intake and its impact on the architectural space. During the day, the ‘outer glass skin’ allows the entrance of natural light, zenith and linearly, whilst also acting as a radiation barrier offsetting fears of solar exposure and preventing the offices from overheating. Internally, we simulate the same effect through indirect light and wall washers, using a lighting system created specifically for the project.
The ‘inner glass skin’ ensures privacy through the dynamic play of transparency and hard/soft edges constantly moving through space. The glazed lattice system is manipulated depending on office layout to ensure privacy for users, by varying the depth and frequency of the wooden louvres.