Is it just us or are trendy coworking spaces trending? From The Hivery in San Francisco to BUREAU in Washington DC to The Wing right here in New York City, new impeccably-decorated spaces are cropping up right and left.
And nowhere is this trend more evident than with WeWork, a company providing coworking spaces all over the world in more than 160 locations. All the spaces are at the forefront of combining modern amenities and technology with unique design—just look at the company’s inaugural Paris location.
Inspired by “Les Années Folles” (“the crazy years” of 1920s France), WeWork La Fayette pays homage to the city’s cultural past through opulent features—peep the massive mosaic-esque skylight—and a dedication to the era’s emerging Art Deco style.
“We liked the idea of using the “Les Années Folles” era as a point of inspiration for La Fayette,” says Brittney Hart, WeWork’s Head of Interior Design. “That era really speaks to who our members are—a community of creatives and entrepreneurs.”
Completed in May 2017, the space sets a colorful Art Deco aesthetic against historical Parisian architecture. The building itself dates back to 1933, and features granite and marble floors and walls, a grand staircase, and an atrium with a 22-foot high ceiling.
“To revive the sheer magnificence of this location, our design team sought to design a workspace that respected the historical significance of this building and its architectural details,” says Hart of incorporating the space’s original elements in the redesign.
While the grandeur of the building is anything but understated, the juxtaposition of bright colors and more contemporary features adds a playful feel to the space. And since technically an office is supposed to inspire creativity, the vibrant decor and natural lighting work well. After all, the inside of a gray cubicle with zero windows isn’t exactly going to inspire creativity, is it?
WeWork La Fayette takes a more modern approach to a traditional office setting through its variety of seating options. There are desks, of course, but leather sectionals, lounge chairs, and even poufs provide members with a flexibility that doesn’t exist in most offices.
Even the space’s cafeterias (though here they’re called “pantries”) induce design envy: From bar-style seating under a brassy canopy to copper pendant lighting against jewel-toned blue and green tiles, the eateries are reminiscent of a classic French brasserie.
All of which, when combined with a mashup of textures, prints, and natural materials, makes for quite the unique office space.