Born to be Bold

Differentiate your brand by adding personality to bland common areas.

The apartment lobby makes an important first impression on prospects and also serves as a place for residents to meet and greet. As developers respond to consumer cues by introducing highly designed buildings into the multifamily marketplace, older properties may find it difficult to compete. There are many interesting and affordable materials that can be applied to walls, columns or ceilings in lobbies, hallways, mailrooms and other common areas to create visual interest—differentiating multifamily assets from others in the area and reinforcing branding. Best of all, a little “bold” goes a long way—so you only need to apply the material to selected accent walls and paint the others.

InteriorArts is a brand new hpl laminate collection from two specialty laminate brands, Chemetal and Treefrog, that deliver glamour at a budget price. Featuring 74 design laminates in a 4-by-8-foot size, the collection offers more than a dozen surface textures with dimensional relief, exotic wood looks and high gloss finishes. InteriorArts is scratch-resistant and GreenGuard-certified (www.ialaminates.com).

Create a 3-D effect with Eco-Dimensions Bamboo Wall Panels by Architectural Systems Inc. Available in six striking silhouettes, these lightweight, flexible panels are made from pressed bamboo pulp. Unfinished 18-by-18-inch wall panels can be painted or stained for a dramatic visual statement. The Eco-Dimensions collection boasts a Class A fire rating, is water-repellent and sound-absorbent (www.archsystems.com).

Fusión Wood Panels make an organic and sustainable architectural statement. This collection is a mix of natural materials and reclaimed wine barrels for a textural and dimensional effect in a range of patterns and species, including teak and American oak. “This is a new twist on the traditional look of wood,” said Nancy Jackson, president, Architectural Systems Inc. Fusión is available as unfinished, prefinished matte or high-gloss and in MDF substrate, solid wood or wood veneer (www.archsystems.com).

InterMix by Architectural Systems Inc. is a collection of three art-inspired groupings: Expressionist, Abstract and Futurist. Panels are available in 38 melamine colors, with a variety of contrasting veneer options including Birch, Maple and Zebrano. Veneers are FSC- or PEFC-certified and 100 percent recyclable (www.archsystems.com).