Project Files: Amegy Bank, Fort Worth
Creating a Client-facing Venue for a Savvy Fort Worth Clientele
Founded in 1990, Amegy Bank of Texas is committed to serving Texas families and businesses with a client-based banking experience tailored to local taste and a dedication to community service that includes providing professional expertise to non-profit organizations. For a refresh of Amegy’s wealth management offices in Fort Worth, and with a nod to IA’s recent design of the bank’s wealth management and consumer banking facilities in Houston, the IA team delivered a work environment that is wholly on point for Fort Worth clients.
Challenge: No Natural Light
The absence of natural light in the reception area, a result of the building’s architecture, was a challenge early in the project. IA countered with an innovative and compelling custom designed focal point — a painted aluminum-frame grillwork based on the capital letter A (taken from the bank’s name) and configured to resemble and reiterate an iconic cattle brand— that covers the entire back wall of the reception area, extending across the ceiling to the entrance. Lights embedded in the configuration at the ceiling, along with light coming from the reception desk area behind a free-standing wall, create a bright, airy feel, reinforced by immaculate surfaces and white walls throughout. Rocking chairs, long-standing features of Southern and Southwestern hospitality, now sleek and modern yet still welcoming, suggest comfort and Texan cordiality in the reception seating area.
To the left of the entrance is the leisure area. Above the hospitality bar (a modern version of a white Parsons-style table), copper lights suspended from the ceiling echo the use of gold and copper in the Houston wealth management office design. Geodes, furthering the jewel-like effect, and mementos, including a football helmet from TCU (Texas Christian University), of local fame and dating back to 1873, enhance white open shelving.
A Resimercial Touch
A living room area for relaxation offers an inviting, lit window nook painted a subtle shade of blue. Comfortable furniture and an art installation of seasoned wood on the wall, part of the bank’s curated art collection featured throughout the suite, play against a hair-on-hide rug.
“The rug was a bit of a literal reference to Fort Worth’s rich history of ranching and the Fort Worth Stock Yards. Fort Worth chic is what we deemed the style of the project,” says Designer Clara Mechelle Karni, at IA’s Houston office.
A Kaleidoscopic, Rorschach-type Pattern
In the break area, for an intriguing twist, IA-designed a full-wall graphic that uses a map of Fort Worth and, through reversed imaging, creates a kaleidoscopic, Rorschach-type pattern rendered in shades of Amegy blue, the bank’s brand color.
In contrast to the reception area, all private offices do benefit from natural light. Use of the bank’s existing furniture in offices and in the support staff area complements the sleek aesthetic of the design. Natural woods add warmth and authenticity contributing to the understated sense of lux and ease at the new office.
IA is a global firm of architects, designers, strategists, and specialists. We focus exclusively on environments through the lens of interior architecture—a radical idea in 1984, when IA was founded. We are highly connected agents of change, committed to creativity, innovation, growth, and community.