THE LAW OFFICE OF DAO NGUYEN – A DESIGN THAT “CAUSES SHOCK”
Stuning fuchsia pink, a sparking bar and … a pole dance, can you imagine that these items are blended harmoniously in a law firm?
When meeting Dao in real life, we were so surprised that this petite woman is a strong and decisive female lawyer who has advised on big-ticket transactions for major clients. She warmly welcomed Harper’s Bazzar to DN Legal’s office on a Friday afternoon. The firm is located in President Place on Nguyen Du Street, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City.
Dao graduated from Harvard University and from the UCLA Law School. She has more than 20 years of experience in the practice of law both overseas and in Vietnam. In 2014, Dao decided to establish her own law firm, DN Legal.
Let’s discover the unique design of her law firm and learn about the leading Vietnamese female lawyer who has an interesting view on life and work in this interview with Harper’s Bazaar.
Pink: the colour of compassion
Dao’s office is quite different from what we expected in a law office. Offices in general and law offices in particular are usually traditional in design with serious colour schemes. However, the DN Legal’s office design is completely different.
It is easy to catch a glimpse of pink furniture or pink pieces of decorations around the office such as pink desks, chairs, folders or pen holders.
When we asked her why she chose this colour, Dao excitedly shared with us: “I love pink. It is feminine and is a colour of love and compassion. I have always reminded my team at DN Legal that to be a good lawyer, one must have compassion and be a good person first. Compassion will help a lawyer understand clients’ concerns, earn trust and find practical solutions to difficult issues.”
Tip 1: Combination of femininity and strength into one space
It is totally possible to mix two opposing beauties into one space by combining bare and strong industrial – style ceiling with pink furniture below.
A place of her own
Designers and architects who are also Dao’s good friends helped design and built the office. It took over one year to complete. The design of the office includes all the things she loves.
The firm has a youthful and dynamic vibe just like its founder. It is also feminine, practical and gorgeous. The bar in the middle is filled with pink champagne – her favourite drink.
The honeycomb hexagon shapes that make up the glittering wall behind the bar was inspired by the image of beehives. According to her, this honeycomb shape symbolises DN Legal’s lawyers always working hard together and devoting themselves to serving clients just like bees.
Tip 2: Creating balance in colours
Fuchsia pink should not be the main colour. Instead, use grey or black as background in combination with the stunning pink.
The bar is an impressive blue and decorated with a glittering wall behind
Dao: “Being different brings me success”
Clients come to Dao because of her proactive approach to legal issues. Instead of looking at drawbacks or legal barriers, she tries to provide tailored and practical legal solutions to help clients achieve their objectives.
“I put myself in my clients’ shoes and try to use all my experience and knowledge to help them do business. It is as simple as that,” she said with a smile. The female lawyer with a bright smile made us think of a famous quote by the legendary artist Pablo Picasso: “Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist”.
Her life isn’t always rosy, she confided gently. She said: “I devoted my younger years to studying and working really hard. After the ups and downs over the years, my biggest lesson and reason for my success is to just be
myself. My clients appreciate authenticity and that’s why they want to work with me.” This is also expressed by the unique design of the DN Legal’s office.
Tip 3: Personalisation of space:
Personalise your office by choosing your favourite colours that are special to you. Decorate with personal items, trophies or suitable feng shui articles.
Dao commands attention in her favourite Karen Miller’s red evening dress which she has owned for more than 12 years