As far as medical offices go, the design of the space is hardly a detail we take into consideration, much less one that we would look to for inspiration. NYC-based Royal Orthodontics is here to change that.
Following a move from the Upper East Side to Gramercy, Dr. Jamie Royal, founder of the practice, was in need of a fresh look. She turned to the creatives behind Float Studio, with a handful of requests, which entailed a brand refresh and a gut reno of the new, 1,500 sq ft office. As with any medical office, there were the non-negotiables that the designer had to work around—a reception desk, consultation room, and examination bays, to name a few.
When it came to the design, Dr. Royal’s personality—described as “energetic, friendly, and hip”—was a major source of inspiration. “As we started designing her space we realized that the old branding wasn’t aligned with a fresh, updated look,” says Brad Sherman, partner at Float Studio. “We convinced her to pivot, not just to align with the design direction, but to create something to attract street traffic on her prime corner spot in Gramercy. The result is a cohesive interior and exterior that reflect her personality and practice.”
You see vertical tiles, Sherman sees teeth: “We also thought about what she does and the goals of her patients—white, straight teeth. All the vertical lines (the tile patterns, white oak slats) not only accentuate the height of the ceilings but are also evocative of a perfect smile.”
One major design element you won’t find here, is the sadly-standard wall-to-wall carpet, which can almost always be found within a medical office. Sherman and team opted for a different approach, one that offers a bold contrast against the new decor, all the while complementing the fresh, clean look of the space: vinyl concrete-esque flooring. The result is a unique spin on the traditional doctor’s office, one that Sherman refers to as “hip and welcoming.”
The new, pared down scheme of the space is modest yet light-filled and lively. Pops of color provide a dynamic sense of depth, while the array of blue-green accents instilled a soothing effect. Sherman alludes to the need for a doctor’s office to be clean and bright—a design aesthetic we can definitely agree on.
The custom reception desk, pictured above, features a very on-trend terrazzo, speckled with pops of pink and green.
As one can imagine, having to work around medical-grade equipment can be a challenge. Case in point? The lighting. “Dr. Royal needed good visibility in a small field of view without having lights that emit too much heat, which greatly affects the setting time of bonding material,” notes Sherman. The space was wiped clean of the existing fluorescent lighting and replaced with simple glass globes. Thanks to the innovations of LED lighting, the team was able to source a bulb that met the necessary color temperature and brightness.
“From powder coating chair bases and equipment, to having custom vent grills made for cabinetry, we really tried make changes that aligned with the design concept.”
Maintaining the privacy of the patients was a top priority, especially with the office being located at street level. The solution, according to Sherman was to “design a super graphic striated decal that’s eye-catching but provides privacy in the right areas” while also offering a peek of the exterior.
“Going to the doctor doesn’t have to be a miserable experience,” he notes. “A happy office can make a happy patient.”
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