Utrecht’s historical Maliehuis building has been transformed by Dutch designer Maurice Mentjens to house the headquarters of Dutch creative agency Born05. The structure has been restored and refurbished numerous times in the past, according to each of its previous tenants and necessary functions. In the seventies, the building was revamped completely – changing its classic outer and inner appearance.

Following the intervention by Mentjens, the interior plays with the perception of old and new. Addressing the question of whether the Maliehuis a true original or just an architectonic illusion, he aims to expose the building’s historical framework while highlighting its contemporary state. Born05’s motto ‘We design journeys’ has been translated into the interior design by creating different worlds in every room – serving as an abstraction of the different areas of expertise the company covers and unites them within the monumental building.

Every space depicts a different reality, playing with images and atmospheres.
The lobby is dimmed, creating a soft light for a mysterious aesthetic, inviting visitors to step deeper into the depths of the diverse worlds beyond within each room. Spaces differ in atmosphere, as the designer applied colour psychology to choose hues suiting the room’s function. The entry hall’s ceiling is plastered to enhance an historic and ornamental appearance, while the remaining areas have been stripped down – showing their original wooden structures.

Explore the worlds in Mentjens’ Born05 – where modern is juxtaposed with traditional – and let colours guide you through.

Photos Arjen Schmitz