When it came to creating a new office for Gulf International Bank Asset Management (GIB AM), the team wanted a space to incorporate some of its key values: environmental responsibility, staff wellbeing and inclusion. Leading design and build company, Peldon Rose, was tasked with the challenge of renovating the 12,150sq ft workplace in Mayfair.
The project was secured at the end of 2019, meaning the team was up against the challenge of completing the project during pandemic restrictions. With the immediate client team residing outside of London, the client was only able to visit the site once. This meant that clear communication and collaboration was required at every stage of the process to ensure a smooth and successful build.
Making a good first impression
For GIB AM, making a positive impression is an integral part of its business, so it was important that the company’s office did the same from the outset. This meant the workplace reception needed to create an impact, acting as a multi-functional space to host meetings, greet clients and entertain high-profile guests.
The Peldon Rose team created a striking and inviting front of house meeting suite, which includes catering facilities, so it can easily be adapted for a variety of meetings and events.
Creating a positive space
Employee wellbeing is one of GIB AM’s top priorities, so the company wanted an office layout that offered flexibility, inclusivity, and would accommodate a growing team. Moving away from the idea of cellular cubicles and fixed workstations, Peldon Rose designed the new office with a variety of flexible spaces to support different working styles and purposes without compromising on capacity. This includes spaces for collaborative team meetings, one-to-one catchups and quieter areas for confidential phone calls.
The team also ensured the space was carefully designed so staff workstations were positioned in locations wherever possible with access to natural light , to help elevate the team’s health and wellbeing.
Aligning with GIB AM’s sustainability values, Peldon Rose set out to achieve accreditation to champion the company’s commitment to the environment. Through sourcing sustainable, natural materials, such as a carpet tile with a 100% recyclable base, by selecting British products where possible, and with careful management of the build process, the workplace was awarded SKA Gold certification.
A workplace accessible to everyone
GIB AM is committed to being a fully inclusive employer and is a proud member of the Valuable 500 initiative, a global movement putting disability on the business leadership agenda. This meant that creating a space that is accessible and inclusive for all underpinned the entire design process. This included installing automatic doors and incorporating a variety of comfortable working environments. The design also features private areas to encourage focused work, designed with calming colours, adapted to be used by those who are susceptible to sensory overload.
“It was very important that the roots of the company’s heritage were firmly planted in the office. Inspired by the geography of the Middle East, we came up with the idea of creating a central ‘island’. This acts as the focal point of our design, playing host to alternative work settings and areas focused on wellbeing, such as touchdown zones, a wellness room and quieter work booths for concentration. An oasis in the workplace, the colleague breakout space features a rich palette of vibrant turquoise, purples and warm coppers. To facilitate social interaction between colleagues, we’ve incorporated a mix of communal tables, booth seating and high tables to offer teams the flexibility to congregate in the space throughout the working day. To ensure inspiration from the Middle East was embedded throughout the design, we’ve also included various design features to emulate rolling sand dunes, as well as the rocky coastline. The high-quality finishes and careful attention to detail installed is maintained throughout the workspace, featuring opulent lighting and geometric designs. Further, of critical importance to GIBAM is its clients. With this in mind, we created areas for clients visiting GIB in person, as well as installing high quality digital technology to support effective remote and virtual interaction.” - Georgia Nogas, project designer at Peldon Rose