Spector Group recently designed the new NYC headquarters for Waterfall Asset Management, an investment management firm that specializes in structured credit and private equity investments. The design, led by Scott Spector and his team, marks a complete departure from the previous white minimalist prebuild palette often seen among asset management firms; creating a modern custom look that represented the true nature of the Waterfall Asset Management brand.
The approach combines elements of corporate and hospitality design including French walnut paneling, exposed black ceilings, individually designed conference rooms, greenery juxtaposed with stone finishes, and varied lighting to create a curated space that offers both a contemporary and mature working environment.
"Having worked with Waterfall on their original office space; we had a clear vision going into this project to create a space that parallels the firm's expansive growth over 15 years," commented Scott Spector, AIA, a principal at Spectorgroup. "The modern design is refined yet energized, celebrating the firm's success and its team."
At the core of Waterfall's new headquarters is the common café, incorporating a combination of banquette seating, private booths, and open conference tables. The space provides a casual environment to gather socially, host private meetings or break out for small group team meetings. Open to the trading floor with an extended line of sight, the lighting in the café is intentionally dimmer, creating a comfortable environment where employees can reprieve from the hustle of the trading floor.
The growth of Waterfall Asset Management was key in executing the design brief, both in terms of capturing the evolution and maturation of the existing brand, and in creating a workspace that appeals to the current workforce, as well as attracting new talent.
Being on the 50th floor you are welcomed at reception with rich natural light and amazing views, guiding your journey throughout the space. The new design allows for the alignment and organization of departments while building relationships between teams. Equally important was the inclusion of flexible space planning, placing emphasis on a layout that would adjust and accommodate organizational growth with minimal disruption.
"Flexibility is key in a business like this, but so often what is sold as 'flexible' actually costs thousands of extra dollars at the time to do it and it's going to take an additional month to get it done," explained Scott Spector. "This design allows the business to take a conference room and convert it into an office over a weekend; as the core design including lighting and space planning, is already designed for both."
Photography: Ben Gancsos