A welcoming round table awaits your arrival as a reception desk at First Team Real Estate in Newport Beach, Calif.

Different by Design, Murrieta, Calif., referred Surfacing Solution Inc., Temecula, Calif., to Fraser McClellan & Associates Inc., a commercial interior architecture firm, to create several specialty concrete countertops for the upscale luxury First Team Estates office. The office is designed for flexibility, with circular floor plans, custom-designed mobile furniture, and specialty art pieces.

Shawn Halverson, president of Surfacing Solutions, was intrigued with the architectural curves and high-end design. The company worked closely with Fraser McClellan, making samples and having several meetings to create the ideal concrete countertops for their client.

The architect's vision was to include feng shui elements by using wood, water, fire, metal, and glass. A stunning 40-foot waterfall, natural travertine floors, commissioned art, an open floor plan, circular furniture pieces, and a soft blue color palette complete the unique concept.

The reception desk's circular design is similar to a barrel's shape, with a teak wood-faced front. Surfacing Solutions designed its concrete desktops. Halverson and artist Chris Johnson were excited with the modern design, and wanted to continue with the design concept.

The unique shape and size of the 22-foot-diameter reception desk, with multi-level workspaces for functionality, needed several templates. The curves alone were a big challenge to template. There's "no room for error when you are dealing with circular shapes," says Johnson.

The design began to develop at the Surfacing Solutions workshop, where custom curved forms with dual textured edges and recycled blue glass and mother-of-pearl shells were created. A grey-blue colored concrete from enCounter, Oklahoma City, was chosen to symbolize the water element. "It was a challenge when it came to pouring the tops," says Halverson. "We wanted to keep the glass and mother-of-pearl placement consistent throughout. Our goal was to have each countertop flow from one to another."

The crew consisted of two men to pour and fabricate countertops in the workshop, and six men to install them on location.

Surfacing Solutions decided to extend the countertops beyond the recessed base of the desk to take advantage of the reflection from three sources of light: a skylight, the ceiling lights, and the decorative floor lights. The blue glass and mother-of-pearl pieces sparkle when the light bounces of the countertops.

"Being a part of First Team Real Estate's stunning new showroom was an honor and great accomplishment for us," says Halverson. "They undoubtedly grasp the idea of curb appeal and customer service."