With its marble floors, ornate millwork, and priceless antiques, the converted warehouse that houses Barry Williams’ three-decades-running design firm, Williams Design, is grand and formal and decidedly unoffice-like. Located on the eastern edge of the Design District, the building was purchased in 2010 by Williams, desiring a place to call home away from home after years of involuntary office-hopping. He gutted the 6,000 square feet and built an ode to the Beaux Arts style for which he’s known amongst his discerning clientele—strictly by word of mouth; he has no website or social media presence.
The result reflects Williams’ penchant for the finer things, if not his personality. “The office actually misaligns with me,” he says. “It looks stiff and formal, and I am casual and approachable.” Indeed, the Texas-bred Williams is warm and welcoming, donning jeans daily and eating takeout Tex-Mex (albeit on antique ironstone dishes). He gives us a tour of the space.