Aspire Wealth & Protection

Chris Hale and Jon Alchin, Directors of Aspire Wealth & Protection, Nelson Bay, have expanded their financial advisory business. Previously known as CHFP Wealth and Protection has been trading in Nelson Bay since 1994. Chris and Jon felt that the brand should more closely align with the firm’s goals. “Aspire is a personal advice team helping clients to create a better lifestyle, so the new name was a very logical step for us. Everything flowed from there and culminated in our launch to clients in July 2014 when the new office opened,” commented Chris.

CHFP Wealth and Protection purchased prominent street-front premises in Donald Street, they re-branded the business to Aspire Wealth & Protection and engaged Evoke Projects to manage the design and fit out to ensure the new office supported state-of–the-art facilities. It has become an excellent work place environment for staff and enhanced a great client experience with an expanded service offering. Chris had previously engaged Evoke Projects ten years ago to fit out his old premises and had no hesitation in contacting them again. “Of course, we went out to the market, both locally and in Sydney, to compare service offerings and price. Jon and I were impressed with the energy and effort Evoke Projects put into the design process, even when there was no guarantee of a contract. We wanted to do it once and get it right first time, so we engaged Evoke.” “We were gutting two shops and starting from scratch,” Chris continued, “so this was about more than building four new walls. We needed an expert in both engineering and demolition. Evoke also gave us the confidence that the end result would look as good as it did on paper—and it truly does.”

The new building includes Aspire’s financial planning, mortgage and insurance services along with a travel agency. Chris explained: “We have many clients who like to travel, and our street front position attracts passing trade, so we partnered with All Australian Journeys, who use our ‘Aspirations Lounge’. This lounge is a relaxing area where clients can have a coffee and chat about all their future plans.”As well as the Aspirations Lounge, Evoke Projects also designed and managed the fit out of a boardroom, a quiet meeting room, Director’s offices and open plan office space.

Chris has a few favourite areas in the new office. “I really like the subtle LED mood lighting in the boardroom, which cycles through shades of blue. It’s a real statement piece and it also illuminates the Aspirations Lounge at night, which looks great from the street.”

“Also,” Chris continued, “we had limited space at the back of the office so Evoke recommended stand-up desks, which are perfect. They get used as both a break away area and for short meetings. Another favourite is the teardrop-shaped consultant’s desk in the Aspirations Lounge area. It’s the blend of statement pieces and functionality that makes such a difference to the finished result.”

The new office is a talking point for both clients and staff. “It’s bright, airy and modern,” Chris said. “The staff love their new working environment because there’s communal space but also private areas. High tech IT has been integrated into the meeting room so that everything clients want to know can be dealt with immediately.

The clients can access many more services in one place now.”Finally, Chris reflects on the project management. “Evoke’s Project Manager was one of the best I’ve ever come across—always amenable, happy to help and a hard worker. Overall, the communication and attention to detail were spot on. I’d certainly recommend Evoke Projects to other businesses.”