Best Possible Taste
We do love a cool new App, an innovative advertising campaign or the occasional takeaway. Therefore we gave our own ‘little fist bump’ when we were asked to take a look at the fantastic new headquarters of Just Eat – a company which, to our great delight, combines all three perfectly.
The Interiors Group has recently designed and fitted out 40,000 sq ft of brand new interior space for Just Eat, set across two floors at Imperial Place in Borehamwood, Hertfordshire. Just Eat is an award-winning, world leading online takeaway ordering service acting as a web based intermediary between independent takeaway food outlets and customers.
Due to company growth in the UK, Just Eat decided it was time for an office expansion and refresh. The Interiors Group was briefed by the client to create a dedicated meeting room suite made up of a dynamic group of meeting room spaces in one wing of the new floor it has taken. The remainder of the floor was to be made up of cellular offices and open plan workspace, broken down by congregational spaces with soft seating and breakout furniture, while a large central tea-point would provide a unifying space, bringing all the teams together with a modern, fun and energetic interior that would reflect the company image.
The project was fitted out over two phases in order to minimise disruption to staff. Work to the new floor was classed as Phase 1, while Phase 2 consisted of the refurbishment of Just Eat’s existing floor, two stories below.
The main challenge of the project was to create a degree of unification between a light refurbishment on the first floor and the brand new fit-out on the third floor. The Interiors Group met this challenge by creating a central gathering space on each floor – this area is visible through the central atrium, which runs throughout the whole building. The tea-points on each floor provide a bright fresh space and have been executed using similar finishes for the units, counter top and splash-back.
‘The Interiors Group came up with a fantastic design for our office,’ Michelle Weiss, Facilities Manager for Just Eat comments. ‘The communal areas work very well and allow us flexible use of the space. The project was complicated and involved moving people around the office as areas were refurbished, The Interiors Group were not fazed by this and did everything they could to minimise disruption to the business. It felt like our site manager was part of the Just Eat team because he was so engaging and helpful with everyone. They worked closely together with us and any issues that came up during the project were quickly identified and put right. The Interiors Group offered a professional, personalised service and I’d happily recommend them.’
The team looked to create a design with a story representative of the client’s identity. When you walk into the reception you are greeted within a vibrant open area, which appears like an intersection of a street. You can then follow the path along the street, which comes complete with stylized trees, and this leads you into the meeting room suite, which is broken up by staggered individual doors – or you can cross the bridge to the open plan workspace.
Individual doors on the ‘avenue’ reflect the interior of their respective meeting rooms, all of which represent Just Eat’s own clients. Every meeting room has its own identity and purpose, from rooms like the ‘Granny Suite’, with velvet sofas and floral wallpaper, to the functional Boardroom, which is equipped with flip-top tables and full AV facilities. The ‘avenue’ also incorporates a large breakout space for informal meetings. This fun and bright area is designed to look like a park, complete with swings, while a roller door conceals an impressive, large bar.
Further along the avenue we find two curtained rooms, which can be opened up to expose another informal meeting area. The suite was designed to also serve as a conference space and the clever use of sliding, folding walls and curtain walls enable the entire space to be opened up, from the boardroom to the breakout space, to hold a large quantity of people for either Town Hall meetings or other in-house events which, we are informed, happen a few times a month.
The wallpaper, carpet and style was carefully chosen with the client, who then filled each room with equal careful consideration, personalising each space with furniture, picture frames, and small details, identifying their brand. This allowed them to truly bring a personality to each room while maintaining a clear design intent.
To carry this story across the two phases and both floors The Interiors Group used elements such as the flooring, a variety of domestic style doors and wall features to tie everything together.
Feature artwork also played an important role within this unification. International artist Anna Rewinska was commissioned to create a large graffiti wall mural and two smaller pieces on the floors.
The graffiti mural is located on the third floor tea-point, spanning across the majority of the wall. It embodies the spirit of Just Eat, encapsulating what they wish to project into the future and encompassing past advertising campaigns.
Finishes, textures and colours were also utilised to convey the story. A sense of nature was pulled through with natural timbers in flooring, worktops of the tea-points and timber details within the furniture, which has been provided by the client or sourced through Interion.
While the majority of the open space has been kept fairly neutral, using grey tones with pops of colour, the interiors of the rooms are bright, colourful and full of pattern through the considered use of wallcoverings and flooring.
Greenery has also been added through the use of brilliant abstract green carpets in spaces on both floors and abstract patterning at the base of the trees on the third floor. Multi-tone flocked flooring in the first floor tea-point even gives a nod to grass in the park.
We think the team here deserves its own ‘little fist bump’. Is anyone else feeling a little peckish?