The office reception area is an often overlooked window into the personality and spirit of a company. Among other functions, it can create your potential customer’s first impression. Thus it’s crucial to make his or her first impression an excellent one. That first impression will also affect new hires who await their interviews; partners and vendors; and others who have a stake in your organization.

Here are tips for utilizing cohesive décor that creates a “wow” factor:

Reception Area Furniture

In this area especially, it pays to display furniture that is cutting edge, stylish, functional and comfortable. If your reception area doubles as a waiting room, make sure furniture is equipped with built-in power for technology devices, or arrange seating near power outlets that are clearly visible so visitors can fully utilize them.  Be sure to compliment the furniture with art that matches the aesthetic; you can win style and loyalty points by using a local artist and displaying their name and location below the piece.

Extras & Accessories

Even in the reception area, you can show customers and other partners that you value them. Provide thoughtful extras that serve as useful, creative, and inviting. According to business author Seth Godin, “a bowl of M&Ms or some freshly baked cookies can tame a cranky client.” Other hits include pitchers of ice water, a coffee bar, or goodies from a well-known local establishment. Aside from consumables, guests will also appreciate good wi-fi, power/USB outlets, trade magazines, and writing utensils. If your reception area features music or television, be sure to tune into a relevant, demographically-targeted channel or station that your visitors will appreciate. Or, most smart TVs today have USB ports that allow you to post a large, personalized welcome slide for your visitors.


When choosing colors, make sure to create a warm, inviting area that reflects your brand and vision.  If your branding colors are too bold or have negative emotional connotations in larger spaces, reconfigure them as accents and use a more neutral theme. Areas for accent colors include baseboard and wall trim, furniture cushions, and decorative display pieces. Live plants and/or flowers also create a welcoming and soothing environment and can add an additional splash of color to liven up the space.

View our portfolio of past reception area furniture design for more inspiration.