workspace as hospitality- selling place not space

Hospitality has traditionally been associated with the service industry, such as hotels and restaurants, where companies make customers feel welcome and comfortable. But, especially with new styles of work, hospitality has extended beyond the hotel and restaurant industry into the workplace.

Todays workforce wants a workplace thats alive with creativity, connectivity and productivity, with physical space simply supporting, not defining, your way of working and living. And with the rise of the gig economy and telecommuting, weve seen this come about with everything from shifts in office layouts to rethinking the very nature of the workplace. As offices try to better deliver on employee needs, hospitality becomes the key word here " but more as a concept than an industry.

That hotel-like, service-forward feel has begun to infiltrate every building use type from multi-family to retail, but has gotten most buzz recently in the office space. It makes sense: Hospitalitys emphasis is on high-quality service and amenities that create a great experience, and thats a level-up that can turn any utilitarian space into an inspiring, valuable place.

Going to work is a destination / experience

In a lot of ways, business has taken cues from the hotel industry for a while now. Office building lobbies have become coffee shops. Furnishings are more residential-style, for a relaxed, comfortable vibe. There are more open, multipurpose areas designed to encourage collaboration and social connection. Its been a response to the needs of todays workers for flexible, less-formal working space.

W17 has taken these cues into consideration with all their properties with their wide range of office spaces and environmental options. Their spaces feel more like hotel lobbys as opposed to cubicles.When Mark Seftel and I started back in 2012, we saw the need for a new kind of workplace. One that is built on the principles of service and hospitality. One that is beautiful, where people really want to go to and work from. In 2012, this was an idealistic idea, for a niche market. After Covid, it has become one for everyone. says Paul Keursten, CEO of Workshop17.

The rise of third places

For many workers in the office, certain kinds of spaces can make them feel more comfortable. A third place is an alternative to the home ("first place") or the workplace ("second place"), when neither is the best option for specific types of required work activities.

Many third places provide access to others in a different atmosphere to spark creativity, enhance connection, and foster a sense of belonging when away from the office. Examples of third places include caf├ęs, clubs, public libraries, hotel lobbies, bookstores, parks, coffee shops, or coworking spaces.

While cities are seeing a surge in these coworking third places, they are popping up in the suburbs, as well. (include W17 urban locations.)

But hospitality is a more comprehensive idea than simply offering first-class amenities like a gym or coffee shop. Crafting an environment that enables people to work in ways they prefer, connect with each other, and find comfortable places contributes to better human performance and well-being. Hospitality is ultimately a mindset: people need to feel welcome and comfortable when they come into the office.

Feeling valued

Company culture is a crucial aspect of hospitality in the workplace. In a hospitable workplace culture, employees feel valued, respected, and supported. Fostering open communication, promoting a healthy work-life balance, encouraging employee development, and ensuring that all employees feel a sense of inclusion and belonging are important standards for company culture.

Organisation : Andrea Pr