Great Designs: The Top 9 Most Unconventional Offices


Google offices around the world are famed for their sense of fun, inventiveness and colour. But it’s not the only company housing staff in an unconventional office space. If you’re thinking about designing a new office interior, get some inspiration from our favourite unconventional offices from around the world. Leave it up to your staff...



1. Facebook - Menlo Park, USA

When the team at Facebook were thinking about office design, they didn’t just do what the boss thought was appropriate, they asked everyone in the company for ideas via opinion polls. The result was a comfortable, fun and creative office, with relaxation areas including somewhere to skate and a mixing booth to practice DJing skills in. Appropriately enough, Facebook has put photos of its office on its own Facebook post.


Facebook Headquarters - Menlo Park, USA | Image Source: Office Snapshots / Gensler


Facebook Headquarters - Menlo Park, USA ~ Image Source: Office Snapshots / Gensler



2. Zappos - Las Vegas, USA

Zappos is the world’s largest online shoe retailer. The company culture encourages people’s individuality which has resulted in every employee being encouraged to decorate their own cubicles and offices in whatever way they want. This means staff will feel very comfortable at work, and the office has a great personality. Zappo even run tours of their Las Vegas HQ so if you’re ever in the area, you can see it for yourself.


Zappos Headquarters - Las Vegas, USA | Image Source: Office Snapshots / Zappos


Zappos Headquarters - Las Vegas, USA ~ Image Source: Office Snapshots / Zappos



3. Pallotta TeamWorks - Los Angeles, USA

Innovative charity fund raisers Pallotta TeamWorks understandably had a restricted budget for its new office space - just $40 a square foot at a time when even a modest budget would have been $80. The budget wouldn’t even have covered the cost of air conditioning for the whole building, so drastic measures were called for. Tents and shipping containers were used to create ‘breathing islands’ to keep air conditioning costs low, and this, combined with fresh colours, has made for a unique, sustainable office space.


Pallotta Teamworks Offices - Los Angeles, USA | Image Source: Clive Wilkinson Architects


Pallotta Teamworks Offices - Los Angeles, USA ~ Image Source: Clive Wilkinson Architects



4. Selgas Cano - Madrid, Spain

There’s plenty of scientific evidence that being around nature is good for us, so instead of restricting employee contact with the natural world to weekends, Selgas Cano took the office into the woods. The building is in the shape of a tube with one long, glass wall so staff can sit at their desks and watch the wildlife as they work. An additional advantage for the company is that the structure is semi-submerged for improved insulation, and the windows flood the office with natural light in the daytime, eliminating the need to pay for artificial lighting.



5. ThinkGarden - Milan, Italy

For a company called ThinkGarden, you’d expect a lot of plants in the office, but this award winning business has brought the outdoors in. The building has been transformed into a kind of Garden of Eden. It has a floor to ceiling mesh wall lined with creepers and climbers, flowering trees, bushy shrubs and pots of brightly coloured flowers. The greenery is complemented with natural slate-coloured flooring, and white furniture which creates a harmonious and stimulating environment.


Thinkgarden Offices - Milan, Italy | Image Source: Inc.Com


Thinkgarden Offices - Milan, Italy ~ Image Source: Inc.Com



6. Corus Quay - Toronto, Canada

One of the most powerful media companies in Canada has one of the most sustainable offices in Canada, with a green roof, grey water recycling system, a green wall that acts as an air purifier, lots of natural light, and Adirondack chairs to relax on whilst looking at the dramatic views of Lake Ontario. To make the space more fun, there are a lot of bright colours, big TVs, boardroom tables shaped like ice hockey rinks and, best of all, a three storey slide and two TV studios.


Corus Quay Offices - Toronto, Canada | Image Source: Inhabitat / Mark Andrew Boyer


Corus Quay Offices - Toronto, Canada ~ Image Source: Inhabitat / Mark Andrew Boyer



7. Etsy - Brooklyn, USA

Etsy is an online marketplace where people can sell the arts and crafts they’ve created themselves. Etsy’s headquarters is a good reflection of the company’s raison d'être. The reception desk has been craftily built from found and recycled items and the office is overflowing with crafts, toys, homemade curtains and a 9 foot tall cardboard owl. It even has its own T-shirt press!


Etsy - New York Offices, USA | Image Source: Business Insider / Jilian D'Onfro


Etsy - New York Offices, USA ~ Image Source: Business Insider / Jilian D'Onfro



8. Pixar - Emeryville, USA

You wouldn’t expect any less than artistic from a company like Pixar. Before the company moved into the building, all the animators were given the chance to create their own office space. Everyone was given the basics, but then had financial and interior design responsibility for designing and fitting out their own area. This lead to an Aladdin’s den of imagination, for instance, one animator created his own tiki cabin, another made a two storey office.


Pixar Animation Studios - California, USA | Image Source: Buzzfeed / Debby Coleman


Pixar Animation Studios - California, USA ~ Image Source: Buzzfeed / Debby Coleman



9. Lego - Billund, Denmark

As you’d expect, a toy manufacturer’s office encourages its employees to play with the products. But it’s also provided a fun environment to help fuel productivity as well as the imagination, including light, colourful offices and meeting rooms, non-Lego games and a slide.


LEGO Offices - Billund, Denmark | Image Source: Office Snapshots / Anders Sune Berg


LEGO Offices - Billund, Denmark ~ Image Source: Office Snapshots / Anders Sune Berg



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Office Design: Top Five Modern Features



Even if your new office design doesn’t have room for a slide, you can still turn it into an unconventional office with a creative and fun atmosphere. Our experienced designers have plenty of ideas which will make a real difference to your productivity, so if you’d like to talk to us, get in touch!