First impressions are always important, especially in Los Angeles. In the legal industry, first impressions play a big part in standing out from the competition. Hundreds of thousands of dollars are spent on Los Angeles Law Office Design to create an image that is far superior than the competition. The high design areas are the focus of this article as these are the areas that separate you from the competition.
In a typical law office, the most important high design areas to consider during the design process are the entryway & elevator lobby, reception desk & waiting area, conference room, and ceiling elements. Above is an example where the high design areas are indicated in blue, administrative & support areas in light brown, lighting elements in yellow, and corridors in white. As you can see in the plan you can only access the administrative areas of the office through the high design areas. When choosing finishes, furnishings, and construction materials the high design areas should absorb a healthy portion of the construction budget. Essentially, it doesn’t matter whether you’re working with 5,000 square feet or 50,000 square feet of space; if you chose the right building footprint you can mask the overall size of your law office to appear as large and powerful as you would like. This is an important point to consider as this whole process starts with choosing the correct commercial real estate broker to locate your new law office.
Elevator Lobby, Reception Desk, & Waiting Area:
The entryway to your office will depend on the amount of space you have leased in the building. If your law firm leases a full floor in a building you will most likely have an exclusive elevator lobby. If your law firm leases a portion of the floor you will most likely share the elevator lobby and your office entry will be off a common corridor. For discussion purposes, this article refers to a full floor tenant.
When negotiating the lease on a full floor in a class A office building you will usually have the option of designing the elevator lobby that leads directly to your receptionist and waiting area. This is important, as it’s the first thing your clients will see when exiting the elevator cab (Note: when space planning your office you should locate the reception desk on the side of the elevator lobby that has the best view). As you can see in the photos above many architectural features and finishes have been incorporated to achieve a high-design look and feel. We strongly urge our clients (if budget allows) to utilize our design team to design a custom reception desk, in lieu of purchasing a standard furniture piece. We work with custom millworkers, which use our design drawings to build a custom reception desk that will give you the wow factor your firm is looking for.
Main Conference Room & Ceiling Elements:
It’s very important that the largest conference room (sometimes referred to as the boardroom) be visible from the reception waiting area. This will give your law office an intimidating look, as it will appear that this is where the largest deals are handled. There is a lot of thought that goes into the conference room elements (conference table, chairs, custom millwork storage, a/v equipment, lighting, ceiling elements, motorized window treatments, frameless glass partitions, entrance doors, flooring, etc.) It’s best that a professional is consulted to handle the design and construction management. The above conference table and credenza were designed and custom built by a millworker. If budget allows this is the route to go, but there are also cost affective ways to achieve a similar look.
As you can see in the photos above, all ceiling elements are aligned with other architectural elements to establish a sense of purpose. When ceiling elements are placed in arbitrary locations your eye tends to catch this when scanning the room. Next time you are in an office space pay close attention to the layout of the ceiling. When items like exit signs, lights, HVAC diffusers, speakers, etc. are placed in an arbitrary locations it gives the space a sense of an unorganized design.
Depending on the budget for your Los Angeles law office design, you will either custom build the workstations for the administrative support personal or purchase pre-manufactured workstations and files. Please note that disposing of pre-manufactured office furniture is labor intensive and depending on the type of product it may end up costing you money to have this relocated or disposed of. The above photos indicate custom millwork workstations and files. A common ratio used to determine the amount of assistant stations is 1 to 3 (one assistant station per three private offices).
When it comes to envisioning and designing a law firm, you can trust us. Redesign has more than 15 years experience and has worked with offices of all shapes and sizes. Whether you are a company that is considering an office move or you are considering reworking your existing office, we are here to help. Redesign is a Los Angeles based real estate & design firm that specializes in providing tenant representation services, developing office design solutions, & tactically engaging the office design and/or relocation processes on behalf of our clients. As your liaison, we manage all aspects of these complex processes by acting as the single point of contact for all participating agents. We love talking and strategizing office space; if you would like to discuss your organization’s goals, please feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at (310) 734-7232.