New Showroom and Offices for Knoll
Bob O'Connor
Product Spec Sheet

ElementBrandProduct Name
LaminateAbet Laminati
ManufacturersKnoll
ManufacturersAmerlux
PaintsBenjamin Moore
ManufacturersFocal Point
ManufacturersHäfele

Product Spec Sheet
Laminate
Manufacturers
by Knoll
Manufacturers
by Amerlux
Paints
Manufacturers
Manufacturers
by Häfele

New Showroom and Offices for Knoll

Architecture Research Office as Architects

New York-based Architecture Research Office (ARO) has designed a new showroom and offices for the headquarters of Knoll’s southern United States division, following the success of their design for Knoll’s New York City flagship, as well as the San Francisco showroom and offices. Located on the 9th floor and roof terrace, the open floor of this new showroom has panoramic views of downtown Houston. The 8,000-square-foot project includes conference areas and private offices of various sizes, as well as open office areas that double function to display Knoll’s furniture and textiles.

photo_credit Bob O'Connor
Bob O'Connor

The interior extends the design language developed for the New York and San Francisco showrooms with a palette that is specific to the Texas locale. Like these showrooms, the Houston space is organized by a sculptural metal rail, in this case brass, that displays a changing selection of Knoll textiles that frame varied office and showroom spaces. The open floor unites showroom with varied flexible work spaces; private office, conference and pantry areas are located in the center of the floor plan, with glazed office fronts that allow for visibility and borrowed light.

photo_credit Bob O'Connor
Bob O'Connor

The design integrates Knoll textiles as architectural finishes, to create materially rich spaces and settings for the display of furniture and fabrics. White felt vaulted ceiling panels at the entry area and main conference room transition into white felt baffles, an acoustic finish that absorbs sound in the open office and showroom. A wall of natural Spinneybeck leather is a backdrop for the Knoll timeline at reception and flows into the adjoining small conference rooms. White terrazzo floors are lined with brass divider strips and inlayed with an occasional historic brass “circle K” Knoll logo. Echoing the brass floor inlays, the leather walls are branded with the “circle K” logo, which is also translated into a large, custom brass pull for the showroom entry doors. Blue perforated leather door pull wraps reveal the brass of the typical door pull and add warmth and texture to the space while tying into the color palette of the showroom.

photo_credit Bob O'Connor
Bob O'Connor

As part of ARO’s third product launch for FilzFelt - a leading distributor of German-milled 100% wool felt, felt products, and architectural applications - products from the ARO Collection, including ARO Baffle 2 and ARO Arc are featured throughout the space. In addition, ARO Plank 2 and the new ARO Petal (a custom screen consisting of leather and suede petals) are used in Spinneybeck leather. The integration of these pieces, as well as other Knoll furniture and textiles, has changed the paradigm of the Knoll showrooms, allowing the sales team to demonstrate products in active use. The design expands the Knoll brand and is a testing bed for new applications of Knoll products.About ARO Architecture Research Office is the New York City firm led by Stephen Cassell, Kim Yao and Adam Yarinsky.

photo_credit Bob O'Connor
Bob O'Connor

At its core, ARO is a practice for the new millennium. Since 1993, ARO has worked with leading universities, cultural institutions, global corporations, government agencies, and international fashion labels. In addition, the firm has gained a reputation for work that expands the boundaries of architectural practice, defining new ways of thinking about the designed environment. The firm’s approach to architecture is motivated by the understanding that we live in a complex world facing unprecedented challenges and is never driven by a priori formal agenda; ARO uses design to elevate the quality of our world. The firm is the winner of the 2011 National Design Award for Architecture from the Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum.

photo_credit Bob O'Connor
Bob O'Connor

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