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Splashes of colour and a variety of textures forge an energetic environment in this design company's offices – hopefully sparking light bulbs above the heads of staff


Creative spaces call for creative interior design solutions. This is especially true for the offices of a design company, where an inspiring workplace can spur on brainwaves.

Altogether-Design is a company that undertakes interior design, space planning, project consultation, commercial projects, and renovation work. When designing his company's offices, principal Nicholas Tay sought to create a useable and malleable work space, following an industrial minimalist design theme.

"The colour scheme is very grey and sleek, with just a punch of orange to add interest and colour to the work environment. The floors and walls of the office are concrete. To break up the monotone, a grooved texture is carved into it in places," he says.

The texture used throughout the office lends visual interest and variety. Glossy white laminated tables make up the main workspace, while three different designer chairs are placed near the reception for waiting guests. These were chosen for their varying shapes – semi-circle, triangle and rectangle – and create a focal point for visitors. The main meeting table features a black leather padded top with black glass insert in the centre.

The central meeting room can be separated from the main office when privacy is required, or kept open to allow more workspace, says Nicholas Tay.


"The functional spaces are designed in such a way that they are fluid and mobile. The meeting room can be partitioned using three black-upholstered sliding doors. Due to a narrow site, and therefore a narrow meeting room, the rippled shape of the meeting table allows for chairs to be positioned on both sides – and for people to get in and out of their seats without disturbing others."

In front of the meeting room is a chill-out zone, which can also be screened off by laminated white doors if needed. A platform in this area provides a place where staff can relax, read magazines or watch documentaries and film clips on the television. Storage is provided inside the platform through trap-door openings. In the meeting room, storage is integrated behind black-framed mirrors.

The function and essence of the company is displayed through signage and decorative elements. On entry into the building, visitors are greeted by the company name, displayed in large letters on the wall. On the front of the reception desk, the scope of Altogether's work is displayed in the same acrylic block letters.

"The company logo hangs from the ceiling over the reception desk, instead of being conventionally mounted on the wall. Made from solid concrete, the desk has a Corian top that is illuminated by internal lighting. This shines from below the reception work table and from above the desk, so the reception becomes a beacon of light and information to the visitor," says Nicholas Tay.

First published date: 17 July 2008

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Credit List

Location Altogether-Design, Kuala Lumpur
Designer Nicholas Tay, Altogether-Design
Door joinery Laminated sliding doors by Lamitak
Windows Tempered glass
Floors, walls and ceilings Concrete
Paints ICI, Nippon
Office furniture Post-form laminated worktops in white and black, with stainless steel legs
Chill out area furniture White laminated platform with MDF wall display cabinet; black-framed mirrors mounted on white laminated wall-turn storage doors Meeting room furniture Black glass meeting table with black leather cushioned edges and stainless steel legs Reception furniture Barcelona, Coconut and Bibendum chairs; concrete desk with Corian countertop Storage Black frame mirrors with integrated cupboards
Signage Clear acrylic by Super Art & Design Marketing; sandblasted glass
Lighting Stainless steel cylinder light shades; fluorescent lights inside reception desk