SIA Architectural Design Awards 2021 – Interior Architecture
o Citi Wealth Hub, Ministry of Design Pte Ltd [Design of the Year]
Due to the banking sector being highly institutionalised, most wealth hubs are characterised by traditional aesthetic notions of luxury, e.g. neutral colours and streamlined shapes to convey trustworthiness.
Global financial institution Citibank desired a more immersive and interpersonal experience for its clients, and we were called to challenge the conventions of high-net-worth banking spaces.
Inspired by the site’s soaring glass-lined atrium, we created a lush thriving indoor conservatory and nestled lifestyle-inspired spaces within it: observation deck, feature bar, banquette seating, lounge niches and Garden Meeting Pods as alternative meeting rooms. These pods feature fabric panels for acoustic privacy, and TV screens for a relaxed atmosphere for Client-RM discussions.
Not just functional, we thought the analogy of the “wealth-growth” through lush gardens was symbolic. We believe this reflects wealth in a new dimension; not typical “marble-and-chandelier” old luxury.
This project is a manifestation of immersive landscaping and biophilia. The success of the interior spaces is many-fold. Firstly, the soaring day-lit banking conservatory is fully contextual and integrates seamlessly within the envelope of the glass house atrium. One would be hard pressed to believe this space was not custom designed for the garden. The symbolic nature of plants in terms of well-being and growth is unexpected but refreshing for banking interiors. The meandering paths, meeting pods and diverse interaction spaces created, question the norm for banking facilities. The designer worked closely with the landscape architect to ensure the sustainability of the plants, as well as careful plant selection to achieve a lush tropical backdrop. The remaining interior spaces overlooking this central garden were efficiently planned and beautifully designed. The tasteful and impeccably detailed interiors are aspirational to both client and staff. The spaces work well for post-Covid working operations where open spaces and social distancing are required. This project is unanimously awarded “The Design of the Year.”