Interior design, interior architecture, commercial office redesign, office refurbishment and commercial office furniture in Hull and Leeds from RFD [red frog design ltd]

Latest news in interior design, interior architecture, and modern office furniture

6. Model Home: Rem Koolhaas Unveils Knoll Prototypes at Prada - content from Interior Design Magazine

Model Home: Rem Koolhaas Unveils Knoll Prototypes at Prada - interior design and architecture
Model Home: Rem Koolhaas Unveils Knoll Prototypes at Prada
Model Home: Rem Koolhaas Unveils Knoll Prototypes at Prada from RFD [red frog design ltd]

If fashion were high school, Miuccia Prada might be the plain, nerdy girl who still manages to be popular. Best friends with the cheerleaders, despite her funny outfits. Rich, at $12.4 billion by Forbes's last count. But the brainy kids think she's cool, and the teachers love her. If architecture were high school, Rem Koolhaas would be the kind of consummate outsider whose charming disaffection quickly makes him an insider with the right people. He has the studied scowl of success. He and Prada hold court at separate tables in the cafeteria.

High school but very grown-up businesses. Among their most powerful names are Prada and Koolhaas. Royals enjoy meeting each other, and the two designers have collaborated on a variety of projects including 2001's huge Prada "epicenter" store and gallery in New York. "We wanted to be seen to waste space, which is another form of luxury," Koolhaas told New York Magazine, astutely identifying the city's intense square-foot fetish. In 2008, his Office for Metropolitan Architecture came to Milan to convert a century-old distillery into the Fondazione Prada. Their latest collaboration was the runway show for the Prada menswear fall-winter 2013 collection.

5. Peer 1 Hosting - content from Mix Interiors

Peer 1 Hosting - interior design and architecture
Peer 1 Hosting Interior Design
Peer 1 Hosting Interior Design from RFD [red frog design ltd]

Peer 1 Hosting’s new European headquarters, we should add, is located in Southampton (well, seeing as we’re visiting a pier, it’s hardly going to be in Coventry!). Since its launch in 1999, in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, Peer 1 Hosting has grown into one of the world's leading hosting providers – and, despite the fact that it only entered the UK market in 2009, has already become the second largest managed hosting company in the country. In fact, Peer 1 Hosting currently hosts 1% of the world’s million busiest websites! This, we are told, has been achieved by delivering exceptional service and by investing in best-of-breed technology for its infrastructure. Today the company can boast over 500 employees in 14 cities across Europe and North America, as well as over 13,000 Customers and 20,000 Dedicated Servers.

The design brief was to make it the best place in the UK to work – an innovative and inspiring workspace that will attract the best talent to the Southampton offices. The new 17,000 sq ft office has the dramatic Solent and docks as an ever changing backdrop. The project is being built using a combination of modern, recycled and natural materials, coupled with energy efficient lighting and air conditioning.

We take a seat in the open, inviting and very different indoor garden on the ground floor, and begin by asking about the location itself. ‘Why are we here? From a business perspective, we’re a hospitality business,’ Dominic explains. ‘We don’t make stuff – it’s the expertise that our people have that keeps our customers’ mission critical’. Website and online, we’re all about our people and it’s about having the best people. To an extent our market is a commodity, and what differentiates us is our people and the service they give.

‘The team that I run globally is Customer Experience. That whole cradle to grave experience should be remarkable. One of the things that drive people mad is, if you’re a customer and the staff that you deal with turns over too quickly, then you constantly have to re-educate them, that really takes away from the experience.

‘When we started Peer 1 in the UK I said that we were going to be in the regions – we’re not going to be in London. I already had a tie down here, so I said we’d put the European headquarters in Southampton. I told the parent company in Vancouver that Southampton was just like Vancouver – and they’ve been over here and seem happy. I think I got away with that!

‘The idea is that, ultimately, we’ll have lower staff turnover. Maybe the employment pool is a little shallower here, but we do have the opportunity to be an employer of choice.’

4. Google Interiors - content from Mix Interiors Magazine

Google Interiors - interior design and architecture
Google Interior Design
Google Interior Design from RFD [red frog design ltd]

As we all know, each generation brings with it a number of brands which, apparently out of the ether, become part of the landscape and part of the language. Google is surely the finest example for this generation. Google has already transcended from noun (the common noun for search engine as well as brand name, of course) to verb. How many of you have Googled today? We have – on our Google Nexus 7, no less! We reckon there’s no end in sight to this ascendency. It’s only a matter of time before it becomes an adjective. This industry, of course, has had good reason to keep Google in its radar over the last few years. Award winning schemes and inventive work settings have filled pages (and here’s four more for you) and dominated conversations. Following on from those previous much-admired and discussed HQ schemes for Google in London, this new facility shows even more clever examples of PENSON’s workplace strategy inventions. The revolutionary L3 Google Engineering HQ in Victoria blends the old and the new perfectly – not in that traditional sense, but rather in the PENSON sense. Level 3 is the latest addition to the Google Victoria ‘fleet’ of HQ’s. It is also incredibly clever on (excuse the pun!) a whole number of levels, integrating the very best of what has come before with some brilliant fit-for-purpose new ideas.

We encounter one of these aforementioned new ideas almost immediately in the shape of ‘The COG’, which is a quiet space with mobile phone jammers. This HQ therefore offers a shrewd sliding-scale of areas ranging from spaces for total solitude, through to full-bore group collaboration in many different guises.

‘This is a real Space Odyssey, Star Wars number – in a very non-literal way,’ Lee Penson tells us. ‘It was – as everything we do with Google is – a real collaborative, two-way street. We sit down with them and they’re often chatting away to us and not even realising that we’re starting to get into their minds.

‘We’ve added zany little touches everywhere. The graphics are taken from all kinds of ideas – from classic arcade games through to Sci-Fi movies – although, as you can tell, there is something of a theme running throughout.

‘The idea is that every time you turn around there is something fresh and different which catches your eye. We’ve also used lots of angles and straight lines –which only add to that futuristic feel. We’ve had a lot of fun doing this.

3. RFD reveal inspiring University of Derby library refurb - content from RFD

RFD reveal inspiring University of Derby library refurb - interior design and architecture
University library interior design
University library interior design from RFD [red frog design ltd]

RFD have created a truly modern and uniquely original environment for the University of Derby. The brief was to create a modern and fun refurbishment solution for a dull and uninspiring library, so that's what they did. They focussed on an inspiring interior solutions that enriches morale for their users. The library features artwork that's a colourful mix of environmental and technology pieces, at once both inspiring and relaxing to increase morale for all.

University library interior design

2. Electric, Paris - content from FX Magazine

Electric, Paris - interior design and architecture
Interior Design in Hull
Interior Design in Hull from RFD [red frog design ltd]

This design of this club space, with stunning views over the Paris skyline, is so flexible that it is equally engaging during the day as in the evening and into the small hours of the morning... 'If Alice in Wonderland had liked rock music this is where she would have spent her days and nights,' says French designer Mathieu Lehanneur of one of his latest projects, the interior of a new bar and nightclub on the penthouse floor of a seven-storey building near Versailles. It seems that the gothic surrealism of filmmaker Tim Burton, who directed the 2010 film of Alice in Wonderland, was a big influence when it came to designing this scheme, in which sinuous black tree trunks made of fibreglass seem to have sprouted from floor before opening up into a canopy of twisted branches that supports lighting and sound equipment. It is, says Lehanneur, a canopy of sound suspended between heaven and earth'.

Inside, the 1,000 sq m main space is capacious, with 750cm-high ceilings and huge floor-to-ceiling windows which look out over Paris and give amazing views of the Eiffel Tower. In the centre of the main space, which has tinted oak floors, a circular bar is also made of fibreglass and is lit from above by a tangle of fluorescent tube lights.

Lehanneur worked alongside architect Ana Moussinet on the design of the club, which includes the huge central space, smaller sound-proofed rooms where different music is played, and an 80 sq m outdoor terrace.

The club, which Lehanneur calls 'a venue that never sleeps', is open for most of the day and night, so the space had to be versatile and as attractive during the day as it is after dark. 'The venue needed to be able to function as everything from a concert hall to a lounge bar, accommodating from 50 people to 2,000, and from noon till 6am,' says Lehanneur. 'The challenge was not to create a beautiful and static place but a flexible one that could change according to the event or the time of day: a kind of magic box that takes on a different identity according to what is happening inside.'

During the day the space feels relaxed and informal - not dissimilar to a huge warehouse apartment. Loose furniture is arranged in clusters around the floor, with Brick sofas by Versus, Martino Gamper's angular Arnold Circus stools and Tom Dixon's Slab and Flash tables. In the evening, when the space becomes a nightclub, the furniture is stowed away to make room for up to 1,300 dancing revellers.

The look and feel of the space can be changed by configuring this furniture in different ways and through the use of video projections. Some spaces have been specifically designed to give music fans an immersive listening experience, while others give the reverse effect, with walls made of foam dihedrons coated in PVC absorbing sound and preventing reverberation so that partygoers can hear each other talk over the music. Says Lehanneur: 'In order to achieve this we worked in close collaboration with acousticians to structure the spaces by the sound and perception of the vibrations.'

For Lehanneur, it was important to carefully consider the many different kinds of spaces required for the perfect night out at a club. The main space is designed for the kind of buzz you can only get from hundreds of people all dancing to the same music, but when this becomes too much there are plenty of places where you can go to chill out, such as a vestibule with walls are panelled in strips of white leather.

'Just like a party venue, I wanted it to be the ideal place to meet,' says Lehanneur. 'I wanted people to be able to spot each other at the cloakroom, dance together in the main room, strike up conversation on the balcony, have a drink in the lounge... and then leave your telephone number in chalk on a blackboard in the toilets.'

Client: Viparis
Design: Mathieu Lehanneur; Ana Moussinet
Size: 1,000 sq m
Cost: Undisclosed
Completion time: 12 months

1. RFD combine modern thinking with Georgian charm - content from RFD

SGS International - interior design and architecture
Modern interior design
Modern interior design from RFD [red frog design ltd]

RFD have showed what achieved with modern thinking and a strong passion for interior architecture. The warmth and quirky old atmosphere from the old brewery building now makes for an inspired space for the SGS creative team to work. The design is current to the contemporary ethos of SGS and has a corporate, yet calming ambiance throughout. Much of the original architecture and building features were emphasised alongside the commercial interior fittings and modern bespoke furniture. The building and interior architecture affects their brand, people and professional ethos, while old feature trinkets help gel the ambiance of the original brewery building. The loft space within the old Brewery boasted original beams and exposed brickwork with original Georgian windows to the rear walls. Old feature trinkets and brewery associated items such as vintage bottles, clocks, casks and barrels were introduced into the interior design to help combine the atmosphere within the old Brewery building. This adds personality and charm to the already superb architectural features present within the building. RFD created and delivered a broad and revitalising artwork solution within the building consisting of prints, framed brewery items, original sepia photos of the Maltings development from the late 19th century as glass blasted manifestations and rear lit artwork pieces.

Modern interior design

Top