ING Bank Amstelveen
Winkelcentrum Stadshart Amstelveen, Stadsplein 96, 1181 ZM Amstelveen, Netherlands
There are few settings more traditionally transactional than a bank, but over in the Netherlands ING is shaking things up. Beginning with its Amstelveen location, it’s giving a new twist to the notion of ‘bean counter’ by rolling out a cosy new cafe setting that blurs the line between teller and barista and patron and espresso-sipper.
With the shift to online banking, physical branches have become increasingly a place for personal connections – places customers visit when seeking one-on-one advice about products and services. Crafted for warmth and transparency, the new-concept branch features a host of homely spaces and rooms designed to set customers at ease and facilitate conversations.
Creneau International has brought baristas to banking with its hospitality-oriented ING re-imagining.
The cheerily named ‘Black Gold’ coffee bar and a nearby reading table replace the traditional reception counter and waiting room space. Open areas furnished in contemporary Dutch style are used for general conversations and meetings, while miniature soundproofed ‘houses’ provide a retreat for transactions or when additional privacy is needed.
The Bank’s vivid orange colour palette is subtly incorporated throughout a warm interior design that draws on natural tones and materials, and artefacts, bright prints and inspirational quotes rendered in neon mark a departure from the traditional marketing posters. There’s even a coin fountain called ‘Money Back Guarantee’ that provides a spot of interactivity.
As customers increasingly take charge of their own banking lives and transactions, it’s up to banks to respond – and ING’s cafe experiment marks an intriguing re-examination of the role of the traditional bank branch.