The remodel of five floors, elevators and bathrooms of a mid-rise office building, together with remodeling of the entrance facade and entry court. The first floor is an apartment leasing office and reception area for the building. A multi-media theater space and leasing counter is on the second floor, with a cafe and furniture exhibit space. The third floor is for VIP guests who are potential investors in the company, with presentation rooms and a gallery. The eighth floor is a conference facility and the ninth floor VIP dining rooms, employee refectory.

Project Type: Commercial

Completion: December, 1999

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The remodel of five floors, elevators and bathrooms of a mid-rise office building, together with remodeling of the entrance facade and entry court. The first floor is an apartment leasing office and reception area for the building. A multi-media theater space and leasing counter is on the second floor, with a cafe and furniture exhibit space. The third floor is for VIP guests who are potential investors in the company, with presentation rooms and a gallery. The eighth floor is a conference facility and the ninth floor VIP dining rooms, employee refectory.
 
Buried in and shrouded by a featureless black curtain wall facade, the first floor interior attempts to connect with the street by the projection of bright white light. An exterior structural column at the center of the entrance is clad in bright yellow ceramic tile. It becomes a monument visible from up and down the sidewalk and the first hint from an oblique viewpoint that something unusual might be found within.
 
While varying in form and texture, all surfaces and materials of the ground floor interior space are white. Only the giant colored faces of the photo portrait wall, and the dynamic multi-vision screen in the background punctuate this ethereal space.
 
Appearing to fly through the glass is a squadron of miniature leopards, a playful reminder of the corporate identity of this sales office.
 
In direct contrast to the ground floor, the second level is predominantly a dark space within which a series of objects are theatrically located and illuminated. These include a leopard signature profile on a silver wall, standing like bait at the head of the stairs. Other illuminated objects include pedestals on which sit Apple Studio Display monitors in an attempt to humanize compelling technological objects. A half-moon rosewood and leather couch and a reception desk composed of dark stained rosewood, stainless steel and backlit white curtains complete the composition.
 
A painted steel frame contains the projection screen as well as a combination of polka-dot acoustic and leopard fabric panels.
 
The projector is contained within a dropped ceiling of red metal panels. These together with the leaning frame are the largest components of a romantic mechanical aesthetic. Leasing counters and an exhibit platform are the other principle elements of the room.
 
The third floor VIP lounge is characterized by a system of projecting Rosewood wall panels, some of which contain black and white portraits of important clients. Other panels are deeply recessed as display shelves. A terrazzo reception cabinet sits as a sculptural volume in the room, projecting just slightly forwards of the gallery wall like a sentry at the entrance to the main lounge. The entry axis of terminates in a semicircular Rosewood and white glass wall. The far end of the room is an exhibition space with models and images of corporate projects. Another axis leads to two multi-media rooms, which feature dark gray fabric panels and white wave-wood doors, a plasma vision screen mounted on a projecting white backdrop, and a horseshoe,
white steel table. The bathrooms on this level use large mirrors to reflect a long wall of white ripple tiles, cantilevered make-up counters and bathroom fixtures.
 
On the eighth floor a remodeled spiral stair, crowned with an Ingo Maurer light sculpture of exploding dishes, connects the reception area to the VIP dining rooms on the ninth floor. Double doors lead to an event space and theatre that can be configured in a number of ways with foldout doors.
 
The ninth floor VIP dining facility is a bright space in alternating bands of white-stained wood flooring and white terrazzo tiles.
 
The terrazzo bands rise up as gallery walls to frame custom designed cabinets. Connected to the lounge by a hidden passageway is a commercial kitchen, which also serves the staff refectory.
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Osaka, Japan

LWO