HLW unveils London HQ for US lawyer

US-owned lawyer Bryan Cave is to open new-look London offices next year designed by HLW.

The company drafted in furniture, product and interiors group HLW London in July this year, following a pitch against architects HOK and Tom Giannini.

David Siverson, director at HLW, explains that the company needed a more efficient and better functioning space at its headquarters at Wood Street, London EC2, in order to accommodate its forthcoming expansion.

‘London really has become the centre for merger and acquisition activity, it’s where a lot of lawyers want to be. A lot of the US firms are expanding so quickly in the city that they are running out of space. Bryan Cave is the tenth legal firm we’ve worked with in London this year,’ he says.

‘Lawyers tend to be quite reserved, especially when it comes to office space. We tried to get away from the traditional wood and dark, but had to reassure them that we weren’t there as decorators but to address the architectonic space. It’s not about a colour or carpet, it’s about making the staff feel better and the business working better,’ Siverson adds.

HLW reinvented the 3700m2 space, creating more communal areas for secretarial staff, opening up dark corridors and giving lawyers more privacy.

Earlier this month, The Partners rebranded international legal group Wolf Theiss as it celebrated its 50th anniversary.

Jim Prior, managing director of The Partners, says that overseas legal groups are increasingly working with UK design consultancies as they try to boost their international standing.

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