Bank of Communications Hong Kong engaged us to design and project manage a new retail banking concept at its Tsuen Wan sub-branch, which was completed in August 2016. The aim was to help rejuvenate their retail banking offering through a wholly new customer experience.
The new concept branch signals a new era for Bank of Communications, as it launches a series of local brand activations across Hong Kong. We developed not only a refreshed brand identity but also a revitalised customer service model that brings together staff and customers in a more open, friendly and accessible manner. Our design goes beyond shaping a refreshed brand image; it also delivers a more innovative, customer-centric and personalised banking experience that gives Bank of Communication customers more choices in the way they approach the Bank’s services.
The new concept branch, a prototype for other branches to come, is located in Market Street, Tsuen Wan, and comprises an entire ground floor of banking services. The Bank’s enviable Ground Floor tenancy with street frontage gave the architects ample opportunity to create a highly impactful brand expression within the Tsuen Wan streetscape. The revitalised façade concept puts the branch into an excellent position to leverage the site’s strategic position, potentially cementing an unparalleled foothold in the Tsuen Wan District high-street bank market.
The new façade features a bright, fresh, clean look achieved with ‘Nano White’ composite-stone surfaces, differentiating the Bank from its neighbours. Large shopfront windows help connect the retail activities inside the branch to the vibrant street life just outside. A striking, wing-shaped band of brilliant blue – Bank of Communications’ is a well-established signature and highly recognisable brand colour – wraps uninterrupted across the main façade and around the corner, creating a memorable landmark along Market Street.
Behind the large, transparent shopfront windows, the bank hall interior imparts a warm and welcoming glow, which the architects achieved with an evenly illuminated ceiling surface that imparts an increased sense of height. Transported from the hustle and bustle of the Tsuen Wan neighbourhood, customers are greeted with a calming and elegantly composed interior. Grounded against a feature wall rendered in soft baby-blue leather as a subtle counterpoint to the Bank’s primary brand colour, the banking hall re-design refreshes the Bank’s well-known brand identity, instantly communicating this institution’s core values and connecting strongly with its customers.
Reaching out to meet the needs of its more digital-savvy customers, the Bank commissioned our designers to compose and install a large-format multimedia display wall, showcasing new products and services, near the street entrance. A 24-Hour Banking Centre and Mass-market Trading Area is also provided at street level, entered from the side-street to help segregate this function from the main pavement traffic.
Just beyond the main entrance, BComBEST customers can enjoy one-to-one consultation in sheltered privacy at one of the acoustically screened relationship management desks. Shielded more deeply into the space, BComBEST offers premier teller services and confidential dialogue in a redesigned setting that better engages the Bank’s staff with their customers. The use of jade-coloured stone accented by lustrous champagne-coloured metals, together with a curated collection of Chinese paintings of nesting birds, invokes the bank’s philosophy of being a trusted companion, ‘nurturing with care to build a prosperous future’.
General banking services located at the First Floor have also been redesigned, featuring customer service desks and teller windows reconfigured with improved lighting and better lines of sight, to support a more cordial relationship with the Bank’s valued customers.