For the last few years we’ve spent a large proportion of time working out of airports, hotel lobbies and rented accommodation. This nomadic way of working meant we had little purpose for a nested office space, contained by time, place and space. However, with so much of our time spent working, it forced us to face up to a necessity to find a better balance between work and the rest of life. Last year, we took the bold decision to invest in an environment that would dissolve the distinction between space and function, and not only provide us with a new place to work but serve as a catalyst for a whole new way to work!
Before we became ‘Road Warriors’, we worked from a window ledge at 42A, Main Street, Lija in Malta. Our limited budget was the main factor in our decision to use this site for the project – primarily, because we already owned the building. However, it would require extensive design intervention to make it fit our requirements. We set ourselves a brief to create an environment that would; give precedence to social space, act as a corporate memory tag, provide creative inspiration and last but not least, be dog-friendly (our in-house team includes a 10 year old Beagle and a 3 year old Staffordshire Bull Terrier).
This project makes the best of a limited amount of real estate. It uses a simple and consistent palette of marble, wood, glass and metal to create a space that blurs the boundaries between work and leisure. All the rooms are a connected part of the workspace – meaning one can choose to perform tasks from areas previously confined to workstations. Even the outdoor spaces can be effectively adopted as part of the office. This helps to make work feel less like… well, work. When we are not working, the office has the potential to turn into something else entirely – gallery, lounge, cafe, guesthouse, library, home, park etc.
The art on the walls is the only thing that remains from the original space. As a twenty something creative whipper-snapper, I spent a couple of years emulating my favourite illustrators at that time (1991). People like Douglas Fraser, Gary Kelly, Brad Holland and Gary Baseman. I was unsure what to do with around 50 of these large canvases. In the end, I gave most of them away to friends but kept these Douglas Fraser inspired pieces.
I feel like the new office tells a story about who we are and can be seen as a form of communication, like a spectacle that both inhabitants and visitors can experience over time. Hopefully, it will help us attract like minded people looking for the work/life balance that their talent deserves, rather than the boring, tethered, inflexible, traditional office of old.
Would you work in this space? Love it or hate it – we’d love to hear what you think.
Bulldog designs workplace architecture and interior schemes from a spatial, organisational and material characteristics perspective. For more information contact Ren Spiteri on (+356) 2141 6173