You can’t miss it. In Arlington, just off Interstate 20 right before you hit The Parks at Arlington mall, stands what appears to be a hunting lodge in the middle of the city — stone walls and stylishly imperfect wood paneling grace the exterior; balconies line the second floor; and through a glass window, a stuffed mountain lion watches cars as they zip down the interstate.
For about 15 years, the Heritage Rock buildings have served as the offices of attorney Rocky Walton and the Patterson Law Group (whose founder, attorney Mike Patterson, owns the property). Patterson purchased the land from Spring Creek Barbeque founder Chris Carroll, and two buildings went up — the 21,000-square-foot Heritage Rock 1 and 23,000-square-foot Heritage Rock 2. Spring Creek ended up taking the first floor of the second building. Other tenants of Heritage Rock include Ameriprise Financial and Arlington Physical Therapy.
The buildings’ design is the handiwork of architect Mojy Haddad of CHS Architects. After over a decade, the place still looks new (and clean, may we add), with much of the original furniture still in place.
“It’s a very rustic, relaxed feel,” Walton says. “A lot of natural wood, leather, fabric, rocks, logs … the kind of thing I like.”
The building materials of Heritage Rock 1 have their own history. The stone comes from an early 1900s schoolhouse that once stood in Oran, Texas, a small town in Palo Pinto County. A small tribute to the school can be found in the lobby, displaying the school’s original metal sign and photos of the original building.
Walton’s office is on the second floor — a classy, cowboys and Indians-inspired space. Aromatic cedar, a wood characterized by a creamy exterior and darkly colored interior, is a dominant material, found everywhere from the door frame of the office entryway to the table in the breakroom. Another prominent wood is pecan, used in furniture like the courtroom bench that Walton designed for the lobby. Larry Dennis, owner of Texas Hill Country Furniture in Lipan, Texas, custom-built much of the furniture.
The cowboys-and-Indians theme is everywhere: Native American-style drums, dream catchers and Western art decorate the space. One meeting room features a canoe, sliced in the middle, that serves as a shelf. There’s also a bit of taxidermy: A mountain lion sits perched above the front desk, and as one walks through the halls, he or she may be greeted by a fox that looks like it wants to play.
Walton’s personal office is, quite literally, a home away from home. He used to live in Granbury, and when he needed to travel to Dallas for court appointments, he would sleep in the Arlington office — hence the personal bathroom with a shower and double doors hiding a bed. (He doesn’t use it anymore now that he lives in Kennedale.)
In contrast to Walton’s office, Patterson’s office on the first floor maintains the same lodge-esque vibe, but with a touch of quirkiness. Its doors open to a grand waiting area that’s part-living room, part-man cave. Mangled teak root chairs sit around a stone fireplace with a prize buffalo above the mantel. Overhead, a deer antler chandelier. But, regardless of the woodsy details, a visitor’s eyes can’t help but be drawn to the two Harley-Davidson motorcycles situated on the left and right sides of the room — 2003, 100-year anniversary editions that nod to Patterson’s love for riding motorcycles during his younger years.
And the party goes on. To the right, through jail cell-style doors (jail, law, attorneys … get it?), is a party room — decked out in multicolored Christmas lights and framed portraits of Kramer and George Costanza of “Seinfeld” (yes, from that photo shoot).
Around the room, plenty of games sit dormant during our visit, like the pool table, draped in a covering that resembles a Texas flag; a Ping-Pong table; and an old-school Popeye pinball machine in the corner of the room. On another corner, two rope swings hang in front of a mini bar, currently serving as a storage spot for piñatas and stacks of sombreros.
“The line between work and play is not a clear line,” Patterson says. “Our setup lets us squeeze in small bits of play as often as we can with minimal effort and expense.”
Overall, the design plays a role in shaping company culture. Walton says he enjoy his job — the space just makes it better.
“Coming to work is a joy,” he says. “It’s a great atmosphere.”