Tradition and conservatism versus modernity and progress very distinct principles but all at the heart of modern banking.
How to convey the positive attributes of these disparate elements as a cohesive whole? This was the conundrum facing the team at Singapore-based interior design consultancy Designphase when it was commissioned to fit out the Asia Pacific headquarters of SG Private Banking.
"Banking has gone through enormous changes over the past 15-20 years," says Designphase managing director Derek MacKenzie. "Most people still have a concept of stability being synonymous with banking, but there is now an expectation that the industry will be technologically advanced as well."
"In the interior design this is manifested in a much younger look, that still has an elegant quality. The scheme is discernible in every department, across the breadth of the corporation."
Designphase's most senior designers, Phillips Connor and Eric Magno, incorporated a number of subtle influences into the design, which were intended to augment the quality of the fit-out, while at the same time serving an underlying physical purpose.
"Following principles established by SG Private Banking, Designphase was tasked with the design of a facility that respected client confidentiality, comfort and status, while providing staff with an inspiring and egalitarian workplace," says SG Private Banking CEO Singapore & South Asia, Pierre F Baer.
"The office was also designed with the bank's high net-worth clients in mind, as they do come by the office to seek advice from their private bankers," says Baer.