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Downtown office offers lavish decor (video)

By ALLISON MILES
Nov. 12, 2013 at 5:12 a.m.
Updated Nov. 13, 2013 at 5:13 a.m.

The former Braman offices on the 10th floor of One O'Connor Plaza  is designed with dark woods, large windows and archways. Taylor Langford, who works in leasing and development with Kemp Properties for the Victoria building, opens a large door to an office. Taylor Langford, of Victoria, looks around the former Braman offices in Victoria at One O'Connor Plaza .

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Plans remain in the works to locate a hotel at the corner of Forrest and Main streets, on the same block as One O'Connor Plaza, said Casey Beasley, a partner with Kemp Properties.

Kemp purchased One O'Connor Plaza in 2008 and owns the land it sits on.

Beasley said the company placed the project on hold until The Sendera steakhouse opened for business on One O'Connor's 12th floor. The Sendera was a major undertaking, he explained, and owners Dennis Patillo and Louise Hull Patillo will also become an integral part of the hotel's food and beverage service.

A search is underway to select a hotel brand, Beasley said. The company will most likely opt for an independent brand that would allow for a unique style in the hotel.

Looking to lease?

Those interested in leasing the 7,000-square-foot space on the 10th floor of the One O'Connor Plaza building can call 361-570-2028 for more information.

Tours are available only to those interested in leasing and not the general public. Representatives with Kemp Properties on Tuesday declined comment regarding rental rates, instead encouraging those interested to call.

Ten stories up and through a locked door sits a throwback to a time centuries past.

A dimly lit hall guides visitors past cathedral-style embellishments and its own small hall of mirrors, while elsewhere a hidden door offers passage from one space to the next. Still other additions - hanging chandeliers and intricate woodwork - give the place a medieval feel.

And on the 10th floor of the One O'Connor Plaza building, it is quite possibly the Crossroads' most lavish office space.

The 7,000-square-foot area was home to the Braman family offices until the family's recent relocation to 120 Santa Rosa St., said Joe Bland, who works with the estate of Thomas O'Connor.

Because the area was home to both family and business offices - the families actually maintained the entire 10th and 11th floors - he said it gave them the freedom to customize the decor more than other offices might allow.

The out-of-the-ordinary office with its hand-carved woodwork was done in 1986, said Kinsey Junek, property manager with Kemp Properties for One O'Connor Plaza. And until the family's move, it remained largely under wraps.

The former tenants valued their privacy, she explained, and not many people had seen the space. Thus, when it became available, it stirred interest.

"If you haven't ever been allowed back behind the scenes, it makes sense," she said. "People are curious. They want to know what's up here."

And it isn't just potential clients who enjoy taking in the sight, she admitted.

"This is the place we bring people to see any time they come for a tour," Junek said. "I've been sending pictures to my friends and trying to describe it. It's the most unique office space in Victoria."

Tours are only available to those interested in leasing space.

Other custom elements make the office something special, said Taylor Langford, who works in leasing and development with Kemp Properties for the Victoria building.

The space was constructed with the office's specific furniture in mind, he said, and custom lighting creates a low-lit ambience. Still, large windows brighten up the rooms.

"It's Victoria from an angle you've never seen before," he said, looking out over DeLeon Plaza.

Much like any other office, the Bramans had a break room, he said. Still, theirs offered kitchen appliances with wooden coverings so as to blend in with the surrounding wall.

Even the nearby toilet is encapsulated in a dark wood finish.

Other break room perks include a large wine cabinet, gothic-style moldings throughout the space and a 180-degree view of downtown Victoria.

And, while the area might be empty now, Kemp hopes it won't stay that way for long.

The company is already in talks with people about leasing out the other half of the 10th floor and hopes to find a suitable tenant for the former Braman office, said Casey Beasley, a partner with Kemp Properties.

He said the hope is to find someone looking to lease the admittedly unique space as-is.

"I've been leasing office space for 20 years, and I've never had anything even close to that before," he said of the offices. "With the craftsmanship and detail, I don't know how to describe it."

Junek, too, said she hopes to find that just-right tenant. As to who that might be, she said, she doesn't know.

But the goal is to maintain the integrity of the office area.

"I think it fits into Victoria's historic downtown feel," she said. "They spent millions finishing it out. We're just looking for a tenant who will appreciate the beauty of the space."

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