When it comes to offices, open-plan workspaces are the design modus operandi du jour – and that couldn’t be more evident in online hospitality service Airbnb’s Dublin headquarters. Now a household name for its alternative to hotels – booking homes and apartments for short-term stays instead – Airbnb’s offices are as creative as its business model.
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Dubbed The Warehouse, the 43,000sqft office is housed in a building that was formerly a cold storage unit before being converted into a bicycle factory, then falling into disuse and disrepair in the 1980s. Airbnb collaborated with Dublin-based architecture firm Heneghan Peng Architects to recreate the structure, according to a unique internal layout and coworking concept that was the product of feedback from the company’s other offices around the world.
The heart of the offices is the Agora, a cascading set of stairs that connects the basement with the upper floors, but also serves as a meeting and community event space that holds up to 400 employees. Rather than parking its employees at individual desks, Airbnb built 29 “neighbourhoods” – spaces that comprise a central communal table, personal storage space and a lounge for up to 14 people – as well as private meeting rooms and kitchen areas. Each meeting room is themed after specific Airbnb listings across the globe, from Mykonos to Montpellier, to whet creative appetites and evoke Airbnb’s connection to travel. Custom-made furniture by the likes of Burke Joinery, plenty of space and natural light, and various nooks and crannies for private work make this office a paragon in collaborative workspace design.
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Photography: Donal Murphy
Images courtesy of AirBNB and heneghan peng architects