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Firm Puts Different Twist on Design of Sales Offices

September 28, 1986

When is a residential sales office not just a residential sales office?

When it is also an old-fashioned emporium with turn-of-the-century wooden buckets, apothecary bottles and fruit-packing crates.

When it is a French bakery with a baker's rack holding dozens of loaves of bread in many shapes.

When it is a candy store with thousands of colorful jelly beans.

Or a hotel lobby with a finely crafted, inlaid-oak registration desk.

Steve Albers' Fullerton firm designed sales offices with all these themes, contending that "a bedroom is a bedroom, but a sales office can be anything."

And when it is something more than an office, it is memorable.

"Prospective buyers get their first impression from the sales office, and we make sure it is unforgettable," he said.

"If the decorated models are all designed to appeal to the same market segment, the sales office center can be unique without overpowering the models. When prospects go home, they differentiate the 15 or 20 models they toured that day by the theme of the sales office."

The end result? "Faster sales and higher profits for the home builder," he claims.

That's hard to prove, but the approach of his firm, Albers & Albers, to designing sales offices has been rewarded.

Last January, the company won the Gold MIRM Award of the National Assn. of Home Builders for the emporium-like sales center at Crismar Homes' Applewilde Hills in San Marcos, and just the other day, the firm won an Elan Award of the Los Angeles/Ventura/Santa Barbara chapter of the Sales & Marketing Council, an affiliate of the Building Industry Assn. of Southern California, for the same project. Barbara Griffin was the project's marketing director.

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