45,000 sq ft

Louisa Ryland House

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Louisa Ryland House, an elegant Grade II listed building nestled in Birmingham’s vibrant Colmore Business District, underwent a remarkable transformation that preserved its rich historical charm. Originally built in the 19th century, the structure saw a major redevelopment during the 1980s and was occupied by the local council for over 30 years. Through careful amalgamation of three distinct elements, the building now features a spacious L-shaped floor plan, spanning 82,000 square feet across seven floors, offering an open plan space of exceptional quality.

The landlord decided to split the building into two marketing opportunities. A portion of 35,000 square feet was designated as ready-to-go “Flex-space,” while the remainder was marketed as “CAT A” space, offering a pristine canvas for customisation through a “Cat B” fitout. This approach would ensure that the building caters to the varied requirements of potential occupants, providing an enticing offering that aligns with their specific needs.

Office Innovations took on the task of delivering the project, meticulously considering the building’s history, structural constraints, and the owner’s marketing ambitions. We produced high-quality visuals, presenting a captivating glimpse into the transformation that awaited the building, carefully selecting materials, envisioning a pioneering office facility that would stand out in the market. These design efforts were consistently guided by a profound reverence for the building’s origins, ensuring that its heritage was respected, and its rich history celebrated.

The landlord had an ambitious vision for the building. They intended for the main entrance to respect the listed exterior, while the interior would exude the luxurious ambiance of a five-star hotel. The fitout and design detailing were held to the highest standards to create a prestigious facility. This attention to quality extended to the basement conference suite, lift lobbies, tea points, and shower rooms. The general office areas were designed to surpass existing flexible office providers in the city, offering superior accommodation.

One of the remarkable additions during the comprehensive upgrades to the building, was the creation of a 100-meter-squared grand atrium, seamlessly connecting the ground and first floors. The striking architectural element played a pivotal role in shaping the initial design direction for the entrance.

The true centrepiece upon entering the Louisa Ryland House, is the magnificent marble floor. Sourced from Italy, the rare Calacatta marble emanates luxury, with the dominant Oro stone showcasing a creamy white base adorned with delicate gold and grey veins. Ming Green, Verde Aquamarina, and Nero Marquina stones were artfully incorporated in a dynamic floor design, featuring the building’s logo. The statement reception desk, constructed from the same Oro marble, further elevates the sense of quality and style, with the front elevation showcasing book-matched marble slabs for maximum visual impact.

By thoughtfully designing the reception space, the building radiates elegance and sophistication right from the moment one steps inside. The conscientious attention to detail in material selection and the consistent application of the fluted manifestation fosters a cohesive visual language that resonates throughout the entire space.

Maintaining its remarkable aesthetic, the café area seamlessly effortlessly blends with the reception through a well-curated colour scheme, adding to its overall quality. The café shop counter features a stunning curved façade adorned with concaved enamelled Italian tiles specially sourced for the project. The luxurious counter is complemented by textured Oak Luxury Vinyl Tiles and Terrazzo-styled tiles surrounding the bar and defining the bench seating area.

Special consideration was given to the conference space, located on the lower levels of the building, to uphold a harmonious and impressive ambiance. The selection of materials, colours, and lighting design was thoughtfully curated to create a soothing and refined atmosphere. The conference space was elevated with the inclusion of a blossoming cherry tree embellished with pendant lighting, reminiscent of a cosy club lounge even in the absence of natural light.

On the upper floors, the general office areas provide a perfect blend of stylish design and outstanding acoustic privacy. The floors cater to single tenant occupation in the suites or multi-tenant arrangements across open plan desking. Each suite and meeting room is equipped with 45 dB rated full-height walls, complemented by stylish critical glazing featuring textured fluted manifestation. Additionally, 2.6m high solid core doors, adorned with solid brass door handles, grace the front elevation of each room.

Throughout the development of the scheme and the successful resolution of design challenges, we continuously received valuable feedback from our client, including notable input from Mark Hackett, the Operations Director. His insights and suggestions played a pivotal role in shaping the final outcome. “What you are creating here; the interface detail; the sophistication in the design; the space planning; it’s clever.”

This prestigious project showcases the power of innovative design, resulting in a captivating and visually striking main office. Despite the challenges posed by the brief, the outcome has exceeded expectations, with the CAT A space fully let and the flex space approaching maximum occupancy. The landlord is delighted with the success of the project, which stands as a testament to the effectiveness of careful and creative design in creating an impressive and highly sought-after workspace.

We would like to extend our sincerest gratitude to EPIL for the opportunity to collaborate on this exceptional high-spec project. Working together has been truly invaluable, and we deeply appreciate the trust placed in our team. The meticulous attention to detail, the shared vision, and the unwavering commitment to excellence have made this venture a remarkable experience. It has been an absolute pleasure to contribute our expertise and witness the project come to life. We look forward to future collaborations and continued success together.

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