When you work, isn’t it nice to have a change of scenery once in a while? That’s the driving idea behind Huntsman Architectural Group’s design for website builder Weebly’s new headquarters at 460 Bryant in San Francisco’s South of Market. It is a workplace that has surpassed the open office concept in favor of the “office as miniature city.”
The space replaces facilities that the quickly growing company moved into just two years ago. It’s located in a large 1907 former liquor distribution warehouse and boasts masonry walls, timber structure, concrete floors, and industrial windows.
Entered via a 60-foot-long entry ramp, the office has two very distinct personalities: the tall, open public spaces—lobby, board room, conference rooms, and guest meeting rooms—that focus around large skylights and a mezzanine; and a series of peripheral “neighborhoods,” which are more intimate destinations for both work and play.
“The idea is to offer a variety of settings where people can gravitate,” Huntsman CEO Sascha Wagner said of the differing scales and design approaches. “It’s about offering different levels of interaction, privacy, work modes, and settings so you can choose how you want to work.”
The open spaces are punctuated not only by exposed brick, sleek white walls, glass dividers, large open stairs, and exposed trusses and mechanical systems, but also by large-scale centerpieces, such as a custom 650-pound chandelier by artist Matt Devine made up of elliptical steel fins. An employee dining area seats 200 on long, communal picnic benches; an in-house gym and fitness room keep employees healthy, while a full bar keeps them happy.