There’s no doubt that you’ve heard the saying “work hard play hard”, but the designers of this Madrid co-working space have given the phrase a completely new meaning. This playground-inspired workspace offers a much-needed break from the traditional office set up. It’s designed with fun and creativity in mind, and as a result, it’s changing the way that employees in the building are able to interact and network.
Izaskun Chinchilla Architects designed the co-working space for Utopic_US, who are situated at Conde de Casal near the centre of Madrid. The company wanted to create a space that would facilitate a flexible set-up and ease of disassembly while supporting their creative and carefree character.
The architects captured this vision exactly, putting together a vibrant open-plan layout that would allow for collaboration between colleagues, as well as catering to independent workers and entrepreneurs.
The co-working space is purposely made to look like a playground for grown-ups rather than an office. Most of the desks come complete with hammock-style chairs, overhead exercise balls and brightly coloured mosquito netting. As well as stairs, there are towering ladders that can be used by the people working there to climb between different levels and platforms of the building, or to reach items kept in the lofty storage units.
The architects insist that there is reason behind such wackiness. The colourful, modular design is inspired by ‘the great cities’ of New York and Tokyo, which explains the hanging fish lanterns. The wooden desk constructions are made to resemble a mixture of scaffolding and industrial carts and they’re equipped with hanging storage organisers that give a make-shift urban feel. The addition of various screens and partitions means that there’s a mixture of openness and privacy in the workspace. But however mesmerising they are to look at, we’re not sure how comfortable it would be to sit in a hammock chair all day, especially if you have back problems.
Nevertheless, the interior setting of Utopic_US is one that truly assaults the senses. As well as experimenting with vibrant colours, the designers made use of interesting fabrics, ceramics and painted papers to create a truly diverse atmosphere. The designers are skilled at modifying and transforming both industrial and contemporary furniture; they’ve turned beds in to office tables and even built ‘skype rooms’ from children’s bunkbeds.
By fusing together such unique features with multipurpose designs, the architects have managed to create an unforgettable environment where work and play are seamlessly blended together.
They commented that: “We are trying to inspire the users, everything around them can be transformed into something unexpected… our work and workspaces are evolving, and an offbeat space like this may actually make working here a little more light-hearted and playfully creative than your typical open office spaces”.
It’s interesting to see how our memories of play as a child can be used to spark some of the most inventive ideas. This office space is a truly stimulating environment for both adults and children alike, and we hope that you’re as inspired by it as we are!