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Designing your building’s lobby, whether it’s a hotel, office, or an apartment, is crucial for making guests feel welcome.

The lobby is the first impression that your establishment gives. A poorly designed one can hurt your image while a sleek and professional-looking lobby can make you extremely appealing.

There are multiple aspects to designing a lobby and these must all be taken into consideration. This ranges from how the floors and walls are done to the chosen furniture for boutiques and lobbies.

If you don’t have an eye for style, then it might be hard for you to design a fashionable lobby. Fortunately, we have a few simple tips below to help you make some stylish choices for your lobby!

Decide On a Theme

You should begin by deciding on a central theme for your lobby.

This is one of the most important stages of design because it illustrates how everything works together. If you don’t have a theme, then you might haphazardly pick furnishings that look good individually but don’t work well when paired together.

For themes, you have several different options. Whatever you choose should match the personality and attitude of your overall building.

For example, if you have a newer building with primarily modern furnishings and minimalistic design, then you don’t want to add old school flavor into the mix. You should keep your lobby similar to the rest of your building.

The reason for this is that it serves as an appetizer for what to expect from your building. The furnishings that someone sees in your lobby will give them an idea as to what your rooms or wares will feature.

Once you’ve pinned down a good theme, you can then start picking specific decorations that align with it. This will make a great design much easier and gives you the motivation to execute it.

Emphasize Functionality

When you’re out picking decorations and furniture for your lobby, you should make a point to emphasize functionality over anything else.

While you certainly want your lobby to be inviting and comfortable, it isn’t where your guests are going to spend most of their time. Additionally, you don’t necessarily want your lobby to be an area where people loiter.

With this in mind, you should look for furnishings that are functional rather than being cozy or attractive. This doesn’t mean that you can’t find functional furnishings that are comfortable and stylish, but those just shouldn’t be your priority.

A great way to understand the difference is to think about the seating options that you might offer. A nice couch is sure to be inviting and relaxing, but it also encourages guests to linger.

On the other hand, you could use benches instead. This is a significant difference because it still allows people to sit if needed, but doesn’t take up a massive amount of space and won’t encourage anyone to stick around.

Focus on functional furniture and you’ll create an effective lobby that serves its purpose perfectly.

Add Character

While functionality should be the emphasis, don’t neglect to add character to your lobby as well. This is important because it sets your lobby apart from others operating in the same industry.

To understand this, simply think about the difference between an average hotel and a luxurious one. Average hotels are going to be fairly basic and disinteresting while a luxurious hotel has character that makes it different from any other.

Thinking about these two different hotels, which isn’t going to stand out more in your mind? Which one will you enjoy visiting more? It’s surely the luxurious hotel and this is because it makes you feel good.

Apply this to your lobby and it will have a similar effect. You want your guests to remember your building and how it looked and made them feel.

To achieve this, you should add your flair to the mix. You’re best suited to decorate with character close to home because this is what you know best. The character that you add should align with your theme and make your lobby unique.

Focus on Floors and Walls

You should also pay close attention to the floors and walls of your lobby.

While your floor is what guests will walk on, they’re certainly going to notice it and how you choose to design it makes a difference. If they walk in and see relatively plain or downright ugly carpeting or flooring, then it won’t give them a positive feeling.

A great material choice is to use some form of tiling. This is particularly useful because you can create interesting designs with your tile coloring.

Furthermore, this makes it easier to add rugs to your lobby. High-quality rugs that don’t slip are an essential part of any design. They make it safe and comfortable for guests to walk and tie all the furnishings together.

How you choose to display your walls is also important. Your two main options here are to paint or apply wallpaper.

Generally speaking, painting is a much better choice for upkeep and it usually looks better, too. Try to pick colors that are fairly neutral or accentuating of the rest of your lobby’s furnishings.

While they may not be the first thing that guests see, your walls and floors will eventually be noticed and this must be attended to!

Use Appropriate Furniture

A final piece of advice is to make sure that you’re using appropriate furniture.

In the example mentioned above, we talked about how benches are a superior option for seating because they emphasize functionality. This means that you should never include something like a reclining sofa unless you’re intentionally aiming for guests to fall asleep in one.

Beyond seating, you should make sure that any other furniture makes sense in your lobby. A small coffee table might be useful, but a bulky dining table probably isn’t.

Think hard about what guests should be doing in your lobby. Take this information and pick out furniture that makes this more natural. Avoid buying anything that detracts from this or causes a different result.

Closing Thoughts

While thinking about how to style your building’s lobby might feel stressful, taking the time to create an excellent design will greatly influence how guests feel about your building.

A few tips you can use include picking a central theme, emphasizing functionality with your decoration choices, adding character, focusing on your lobby floor and walls, and ensuring to use appropriate furniture.

After planning out a great lobby layout, all you need to do is make it happen! You don’t get very many opportunities to design your lobby, so you want to make sure that you do it right.

Remember that your lobby speaks volumes about the rest of your building and business. Create an impression that lasts and you’ll appreciate how powerful a great lobby can be!