Asia's most effective workspaces: Airbnb (Tokyo)

Airbnb’s picture-perfect Tokyo office provides a wide variety of work stations for employees.

Airbnb (Tokyo, Japan)

Designed By - Suppose Design Office

Home-style accommodation provider Airbnb’s Tokyo office looks more like one of the many picture-perfect listings on its app than a dynamic business complex. The old office, which staff complained was too “corporate” with “limited communal space”, underwent a complete transformation in 2016 to the 500 square-metre team-centred space that it is today.

Highlights

  • Localised neighbourhood theme based on different iconic Tokyo districts
  • Varied work stations, from outdoor-inspired communal zones to private booths with height-adjustable desks
  • Rooms with traditional Japanese elevated platforms (Engawa) and Tatami mats
  • Other rooms based on existing accommodation listings from Prague, Tijuana, Barcelona and Terrebonne
  • Thought-provoking art and historical artefacts displayed in each of the city-themed rooms

So what?

  • Employees get to alternate between spaces as they choose
  • The layout and furniture encourage healthy, ergonomic movement, increased socialising, and engagement
  • Also ample quiet working spaces where employees can escape the chaotic urban environment of the local area in Shinjuku

They say:

“We (the Environments Team) are culture keepers, both for Airbnb and the cities, like Tokyo, where we are lucky enough to have offices.We carry certain standards through every Airbnb office, so when you walk in, you know where you are even without a logo on the door. But we also partner with a local architect like Suppose Design and the local employees to ensure that the design has a true sense of place.The elements are not cheap imitations of that culture or copies of the same tech design we’ve begun to see around the world. Instead, it feels authentic and true to the spirit of both Airbnb and Tokyo.”

- Rebecca Ruggles, Airbnb Environments Team

 

See also: 

Asia's most effective workspaces revealed

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