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The objective is to attract people to places – and then make them want to STAY LONGER

Whilst our core service is

environmental graphics and signage, we have developed our skill sets to offer an overall improvement to the consumer experience of buildings and places, and to increase the value for the client and the consumer.

our unique methodology & process

Our work is not about making signs but about creating experiences. So we look at how people move through different buildings; we look at how we make that journey more interesting, more entertaining, or more comfortable. Can we spice up drab walls with images, can we make long corridors more attractive with sculptures, can we make waiting for elevators more entertaining with interactive electronics? We want to improve the experience for consumers, and we have so many ideas how to do this, using images, interactivity, lighting, sculptures, arty stuff, wild and weird stuff. This is what brings your building to life and makes the 'being there' such a unique experience.


That is the creative side. But before that there is a most important strategy stage, and this is where we differ from all other studios. Strategy is about a) understanding our complex consumers and b) understanding how the different parts of the building affect them. We design based on this understanding. It is this knowledge that makes the designs that follow truly work for the consumer, and that add value to the development.

The backbone of our methodology is the 6-step gB process. We have developed this over several years, influenced by such people as Jane Jacobs and Kevin Lynch and, of course, our years of practical application.

Our Unique Methodology

The gB process applies to all types of buildings – retail, residential, office, hotel, theme parks etc – and allows you to map your users interaction with your project. Identify where each stage occurs, then identify what information your users need at each stage then, finally, design something engaging to provide that information.

We encourage other designers to use this methodology – and, indeed, to try and improve it – but we would appreciate you acknowledge that it is the gB process.

Our Work Process


Place  Diagnostic & Strategy

Place Diagnostic & Strategy

  • Place audit

  • Consumer and environmental analysis

  • Mood and activity mapping

  • Trade and activity evaluation

  • Overall place masterplan

Do you ever wonder why one part of a mall is busy and another part isn’t? Or one building sells and another doesn’t? It rarely is a single issue of, say, architecture or trade mix, but rather a combination of factors that combine to make people like the place or not like the place.

Our unique Place Diagnostic methodology evaluates exactly what affects the consumer experience; what is perhaps giving a “bad impression” and what can be improved, and what is the best way to improve it. In essence we:

  • assess the commercial value of our clients’ projects from the consumers’ perspective

  • identify under-valued areas and opportunities in and around the site - prescribe economically-effective solutions to bring out extra value

After our evaluation, our report gives recommendations covering a variety of factors including urban and architectural improvements, interior/lighting/landscaping changes, trade-mix recommendations, ambient/experiential needs...all the elements that, combined, will give your consumer a good experience.


EGD & Wayfinding

EGD & WayfindinG

  • Consumer identification

  • Motivational mapping

  • Journey patterning

  • Nodes, pathways and sightline hierarchies

  • EGD and signage location planning

We are widely regarded as the pioneer of this industry in the Greater China region. We established our first office back in 1980 offering what we then called ‘architectural graphics’.

We then evolved the industry, through environmental graphics to spatial branding to where we are today – focusing on the consumer experience.

Wayfinding should never be considered on its own; wayfinding is one part of how we experience places, and it is the experience that is important. So it is not only about wayfinding from A to B but, rather the overall experience of the journey from A to B.

By creating experiences we create value – value for the customers and therefore value for our clients.


Digital Experiences

Digital Experiences

Site-wide digital strategy

  • activity mapping and projecting

  • content categorisation

  • physical conceptualisation

  • programming and scheduling

  • site-wide integration

  • sourcing and commissioning

Digital directory programming

  • site mapping

  • Programming

  • GUI design

  • app compatibility

  • specifications, sourcing & commissioning

Digital directory programming: Particularly in shopping malls digital directories are an almost-essential part of the experience. Our service is distinguished from ‘other’ computer programme firms because we have spend the last 40 years understanding how consumers behave in shopping malls. Our directory planning is based on this knowledge and thus our directories are more user-friendly, more motivating, than most.

Site-wide digital strategy: Too often we see projects where each consultant – architect, landscape, interior designer – each have their ideas for inserting digital displays around the site. They are rarely coordinated, and rarely market- focussed. Thus we introduced Site-wide Digital Strategy. We use our essential place diagnostic process to identify where digital elements would have value to the customers, and what form those elements should take. Thus the digital becomes a coordinated part of the overall site experience, adding further value for the experience and the client.


Place Revitalization

Place Revitalization/Urban Redevelopment/Upgrade services

  • Urban context and value assessment

  • Competitive assessment

  • Brand and identity positioning

  • Development scheduling

  • Implementation/phasing programming

This is an area where our Place Diagnostic service is particularly valuable – re-energising tired malls, and repositioning city districts.

There are many old malls in China that are no longer competitive yet have great potential. The owners lack the knowledge to change them, and currently there are no complete services to assist them. They would need to collect several different firms together in order to up grade, and such an undertaking is complex and does not guarantee success.

Our diagnostic service blends urban, architectural, and interior knowledge with branding and marketing processes to be able to analyse and remedy places that out-dated.

Thus from old malls to old city districts we can revitalise and make these places exciting and commercially attractive.


Place Branding

Place Branding

  • Stakeholder/consumer analysis

  • Brand value identification and positioning

  • Brand architecture

  • Touch-point mapping and evaluation

  • Collateral identification

Place branding focusses on how to present your development in the most valuable and attractive way to your target customer. Whilst it employs many of the analytical tools of Place Diagnostics, the outcome is concentrated on communicating a powerful image to your customers.

This communication has two main avenues; first, through marketing and advertising promotion and, second, through improvements to the physical space – your buildings – to improve every customer touch-point.

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