“No one is our competition,” states Anthony Choo, the creative director at Design Anthology & Partners. Rather than a declaration of arrogance, the statement reflects how open to collaboration Design Anthology & Partners are. “You never know when it’s possible to collaborate. We believe that when different brands come together, wonderful things for design can happen.”
The regional design firm, with headquarters in Singapore and offices in Indonesia and Vietnam, was established in August 2015 by relying on the vast years of expertise in the design field and the massive list of contacts of the founders, who, in addition to Anthony, include Willie Yee and Daphne Tan. Together, the team has over 20 years of experience in the design industry.
Since their launch, the firm has worked with local and international design associates across different fields on commercial, hospitality and residential projects. In addition to their current offices, Design Anthology & Partners also has plans to open branches in London and Chongqing. Their goal is to eventually become a multi-design practice with forays in related businesses.
The company also has a residential interior design subsidiary, DAP Atelier, which works closely with homeowners to create spaces of their dreams. DAP Atelier is largely managed by Willie and Daphne, who are the project director and creative director at Design Anthology & Partners respectively. DAP Atelier’s design direction is relatively versatile, although their strength lies in contemporary classic and leans towards luxury living.
Despite their wide reach, Anthony insists that they are still a boutique design firm. “We are very hands on and involved in the design planning stages of all our projects,” he explains. “We may assign them to our other colleagues to handle, but our clients can be assured that they are still getting the services and design values of the top management.”
And this is possible because of the founders’ deep affection for design. “You can say we’re hyper passionate,” says Anthony with a laugh. “We can talk about design non-stop for hours!”
Nonetheless, the opinions of their clients matter very much to the team. “Some design firms might believe that they have to stand their ground when it comes to design ideas, but I beg to differ. I believe in two-way communication and participation, and we are very receptive to ideas that our customers have,” says Anthony. “We see ourselves as a producer or a scriptwriter that gathers all the information and then providing a proper body, and in our case, it’s a proper design concept. We don’t want to change our clients’ perception; what we want is to innovate their thinking. ”
At the end of the day, what they hope their clients can take away is the process. “We want them to feel like they’ve had fun after the project ends,” says Anthony.
This was adapted from Brand Story vol.1 2016