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When Empire State Realty Trust (ESRT) undertook a tenant improvement project for CLA’s (CliftonLarsonAllen LLP) new flagship offices at the historic One Grand Central Place, the goal was to create a bespoke, beautifully designed space tailored to CLA’s needs—an approach that contrasts with typical, less customized office projects. As longtime collaborators with multiple projects together at the Empire State Building, ESRT chose NELSON Worldwide as the architect of record to realize design firm ICRAVE’s vision.

A standout feature is a custom trophy display in the entryway, designed to make an immediate impression. This curved, floor-to-ceiling unit with a built-in banquette serves as a waiting area and blends seamlessly into the space. It features smooth surfaces, integrated lighting, and a design that harmonizes with the bronze circular ceiling above. What began as a simple concept evolved into a detailed project requiring close collaboration between NELSON and contractors to perfect. The display elegantly showcases CLA’s client portfolio with iconic trophies and QR plaques, serving as a sophisticated branding tool.

The office design emphasizes not only functionality but also the comfort of employees and clients. Warm, inviting finishes like wood-cladding walls create a layered atmosphere. Various workstations, dining areas, and smaller meeting rooms accommodate different work needs, while flexible spaces encourage transparency and connectivity.

A central lounge area enhances employee wellness and connection, featuring millwork cutouts for yoga mats and a karaoke machine to cater to diverse interests. The lounge opens to a cafe and adjacent booth seating, providing additional respite and hosting options. A large communal table offers space for lunches, group meetings, or client events.

NELSON’s execution of ICRAVE’s design brought to life a unique tenant improvement project, infusing the space with warmth, authenticity, and purpose. CLA’s new workspace surpasses expectations and leaves a lasting impression on all who enter.