Ogilvy Offices – Montreal

The signifying Ogilvy red pairs with a minimalist environment and simple palette to create a dynamic environment for the advertising company's Montreal offices.

  • Client Ogilvy,
  • size 8,200 sqft
  • Year 2019
  • Location Montreal, Canada,
  • Industry Advertising / Marketing,
  • FOR. design planning completed a renovation and addition to the Ogilvy offices utilizing the brand’s successful model of original ideas in Montreal, Canada.

    Ogilvy is an agency on the move. After several acquisitions and an identity change, the group wanted to make some organizational improvements. It considered relocating but ultimately decided to optimize its existing offices, located in a neighborhood whose character gives the agency a strategic edge. Securing an adjacent space made it possible to proceed with the project.

    The firm has always excelled at creating original ideas. Using that fact as a starting point, the project focused on highlighting Ogilvy’s identity and history to support the company’s talented people. The concept for the new spaces was built on two distinctive elements: the leitmotif is the founder, David Ogilvy; and the red background, the brand’s signature color, is integrated into a sleek, minimalist environment underscored by a simple palette of contrasting black and white.

    The goal of the planning process was to create connections and provide a platform for different kinds of teams to embrace the space in ways that fit their needs.

    The space is a multifunctional hub, sensitive to human needs, and fertile for discussions. For. design planning developed a public space for hosting and collaboration, as well as private workspaces with different levels of privacy.

    The reception desk and its boutique hotel-style quartz countertop are positioned to be more open to the outside. Visitors and clients are welcomed with a glance, a smile, and a coffee. The reception area does double duty as a lounge for discussion and collaboration, both formal and informal. It is a place where clients, employees from different departments, and partners interact daily. This lounge, featuring classic 1950s furnishings, is a place for creative encounters where the improbable can become inevitable. There is classic furniture by Knoll and Herman Miller, under a custom-made black acoustic ceiling punctuated by accent lighting that provides a sense of intimacy. The finishing touch is Mohawk rugs, which dampen sound in the open space.

    As we follow the directional element – the red core – the space is divided into progressively more private zones. These successive spaces are for formal meetings, creative work, and presentations; their capacity ranges from two to 20 people. Turning the corner into a hallway, we see a portrait of David Ogilvy, a source of inspiration and encouragement, his presence personified in his quotations, applied to the glass surfaces. The new third-floor design includes a 50% increase in floor space. It was modified to host collaborative work and to be suitable for receptions and all-hands meetings where the firm’s milestones are celebrated.

    Ogilvy’s Montreal offices span two floors. Because the fourth floor will remain operational for the medium-term, the rethinking of this space was done on an ad hoc basis, with the main focus being put on the third floor. This choice helped highlight the firm’s values and made it possible to meet a need, while also optimizing both the use of the space and its visual impact. The production and creative teams have retained their existing dynamic in their upstairs work units and they have gained spaces for collaboration and interaction on the third floor.

    The bottom line on this project is that it strikes a fine balance between opposites: a vibrant and intense space that’s also comfortable, streamlined, and intimate.

    Design: FOR. design planning
    Photography: Stephane Brügger