June 12, 2019 – As the on-call architect for Merritt 7 Corporate Park, we provide design services for the entire complex which includes six properties on Main Avenue in Norwalk adjacent to Route 7. This 1.5 million square foot office park, managed by Clarion Partners and Marcus Partners, is home to companies such as Hearst Connecticut Media Group, HEI Hotels & Resorts, Zillion, M&T Bank, and Datto Inc., and we are proud to play a significant role in designing the spaces where these companies and their staff conduct business. Designating comfortable areas for midday relaxation can transform a traditionally formal corporate setting into a modern workplace. We designed the lounge at 301 Merritt 7 with this reasoning in mind – to create a place apart from the daily routine, located conveniently next to the café where people naturally congregate throughout the day.
After relocating our Norwalk office to the adjacent space at 301 Merritt 7, the property management tasked us with creating a design for our former space which would expand upon the existing café. Our goal was not simply to add more tables and chairs, but to offer a hospitality-like aesthetic similar to what you’d find in an upscale hotel lobby. We changed the floor surface to porcelain tile in lieu of carpet to set the tone for the unique and elegant appeal of this new lounge. Our selection of reconfigurable furniture pieces provides enough versatility for the room to be easily translated from daytime activities to nighttime events. This includes seating that is situated around a cocktail table which can be used for conferencing or just noshing, a second small seating area for three, a high table for 8, and a banquet that can seat 16 people – very practical when converting the space for presentations or networking events, one of the intended uses for this new space. It was a priority for us as the architects and interior designers to incorporate multiple areas for people to eat, work, gather, and unwind – the end result being the creation of a harmonious space that blends together several functions.
The focal point of the room is the remote-controlled, gas-powered fireplace that has the capability of changing colors, which adds a fun and interactive element to the space. Acoustics of the room were a concern of ours, so as part of the design solution we implemented custom acoustical baffles that correspond with the shape of the open ceiling, and placed discreet lighting within these baffles to provide soft, even light to the entire room. As a final touch we selected a vinyl wall covering made from newsprint to add interest to the large focal wall behind the banquet. It may be hard to detect from a cursory glance, but upon close examination the colors and typefaces from various publications become visible. Accent lighting illuminates this wall covering with a beautiful, warm glow from behind the banquet as well as from above.
Our attention to detail exemplifies our dedication to the personality and character of each and every one of our clients for whom we design functional and individualized spaces.
“Clarion, Marcus, and Antinozzi worked collaboratively and successfully to design a flexible space to eat breakfast, lunch, or enjoy a cup of coffee, hold informal meetings, break out from the nearby conference center, and accommodate private tenant events. At Merritt 7, improving upon tenants’ workday experience is a high priority and we value our extensive working relationship with Antinozzi to achieve these important goals.”
Margaret Egan, SVP Clarion Partners