5 of the Most Creative Offices in America
Given the amount of press they’ve received, open-plan offices may quickly seem as passé as the old corner office model. But these standouts give hope that the collaborative design phenomenon is no passing fad.
French liquor giant Pernod Ricard moved into its prime Park Avenue digs in 2012 with the goal of bringing a fresh Midtown South vibe above 42nd Street. Spector Group Architects accomplished that with a gut renovation that nailed the sleek and occasionally rough around the edges loft look. Conference rooms evoke the company’s various liquors—the Kahlua suite, for instance, is ringed with Alhambra tiles. You can also sip spirits at the straight-out-of-Mad Men lobby bar.
Los Angeles, California
When these charity event planners outgrew their Crossroads of the World office in Hollywood 13 years ago, even the sprawling 47,000 SF warehouse the group found in LA’s Altwater Village couldn’t handle Pallotta’s rapid growth. So it hired Clive Wilkinson & Associates to vertically expand the digs with stacked shipping containers (years before those became a hipster cliché) at a reduced redesign price of $40 PSF. Tented “breathing islands” provide naturally cool air as part of a retrofit awarded by the American Institute of Architects.
It will repel Yankees fans, but the numerous Fenway Park homages at the building services company’s Boston seaport digs should appeal to most of the younger workforce Communispace hopes to attract. A sign for “Green Monster Seats” leads to an employee’s-only lower level modeled after the Red Sox’s home, right down to gate numbers and a scoreboard.
Jack Dorsey’s Square contributed in a very big way to the tech world trend of eschewing Silicon Valley campuses for downtown San Francisco offices when it leased a whopping 200,000 SF in the ascendant Mid-Market neighborhood. A gorgeous Scandinavian design theme predominates, but amenities are anything but minimal. Employees hold meetings in bamboo cabanas plush with Maharam wool and elegant “arteries” lead from one end of the block-through building to another. This being San Francisco, there’s also a chic coffee shop stocked with the finest beans.
1979 Milky Way, Verona, Wisconsin
Although its office is located just outside the quintessential college town of Madison, this medical software company pays homage to the big city with a (noticeably spotless, oversized) replication of a New York City subway car. On the organic side, a bevvy of outdoor space adds to the office’s charm.