Year of Completion: 2018
Project Location: HYDERABAD, INDIA
Photographer: MERAKI EXPOSURE
About the Project:
Seeking to establish an Indian headquarter in the city of Hyderabad, Slayback Pharma wanted a vibrant office space to house 40 of its employees. The American Start-up Pharma Company, Slayback required a contemporary, corporate setting that would reflect a lively and happening office space while maintaining formality necessary for its day-to-day functioning. The space was to denote the enthusiasm with which this young company is making progress in the industry at such a nascent stage.
Located in a multi-storey office complex in the IT hub of Hyderabad, the 4000 sq. ft. office space is set apart by its warm and inviting interiors designed to exude comfort and luxury, despite being a corporate space.
The concept behind the planning of the interiors is to provide a modern setting for the American firm, while acknowledging the Indian connection. The most obvious instance of this connection is provided at the entrance itself which features a gravelled, green courtyard against the backdrop of a wall clad in Jaisalmer stone. Beyond this space, the planning is segregated into public and private domains, divided by two axial corridors leading to a common workplace.
The reception and waiting area is visually and stylistically segregated from the rest of the office space by encasing them in an elevated wooden shell extending from the floor to the ceiling and wrapping the space in a warm, comfortable environment. The reception counter is designed in satvario stone and veneer with a twisted chandelier overhead, defining the space. The chandelier is designed out of thermopine logs, a welcome contrast against the symmetrical geometry of the surroundings. An open waiting area offsets the reception, with a visitors’ meeting room planned adjacent to it. Both the waiting area and the meeting room features custom-designed, winged armchairs designed in vibrant colours to counter the muted tomes of the wooden shell.
The reception area diversifies into two corridors: one leading to the formal area, housing the meeting rooms and accessed by visitors and staff alike, the other leading to the informal area leading to the workspace via the cafeteria, accessed only by the employees.
The formal corridor features a brick jaali wall on the left designed with protruding bricks which give the impression of rotating as on one walks past. On the right side of the corridor is a 16-seater board room designed with multiple fabric panels on one of the walls, interspersed with muted tones of grey, blue and traditional Indian motifs. The custom-made furniture is designed in accord with the interiors of the room.
Moving along the corridor, there are two smaller meeting rooms along the board room, both featuring circular tables with handcrafted fabric chairs and circular fabric chandeliers. Each of these spaces is distinct in character; one of the rooms has a brick wall with German smear, and the company logo stencilled out, while the other showcases a plain green wall with a wall tapestry made out of thread-work. The tapestry is designed to depict the New Jersey skyline (city with company headquarters) and the Hyderabad skyline (company’s Indian headquarters), both lined by a common thread, literally and symbolically.
The Director’s cabin is located opposite the meeting rooms, giving it the advantage of a vantage point that overlooks the entire workspace. This space too is given a playful, interactive character with an elegant backdrop of a brick wall with the bricks jutting out in a pattern. Facing this cabin is a compact breakout space for the employees enclosed in a low-height, U-shaped brick wall with an informal seating space following its curve, and a cane swing.
Beyond the meeting rooms and the Director’s cabin, the plan opens out into the workspace.
This area has been specifically designed to promote a perfect balance between privacy and interactivity. The employees are seated on custom designed metal and wood workstations in clusters of four. The arrangement inculcates a sense of belonging without hindering discussion and social interaction, so important in contemporary work spaces. Acrylic glass partitions are used to provide the required privacy the employees need to concentrate on the work at hand.
Primarily designed in white, the workplace is devoid of false ceiling to make it seem larger with clean rectangular light fixtures suspended from the ceiling. A metal and wood rack is featured along one of the peripheral walls, interjected by bright yellow padded seating’s to break the monotony of the rack.
The informal corridor leads to the cafeteria from the workspace, with two more Directors’ cabins on either side, enjoying unhindered view of the work stations.
The cafeteria is placed at one corner of the office designed to infuse a lively, vibrant feel to the space.
The café accommodates a fashionable bar seating along with tufted seating couches to allow a laidback, comfortable look. Hues of blue, yellow and white are used to bring the space to life. Custom- designed Victorian chairs add to the charm of the space. White wooden pergola covers the bar counter and the pantry while the seating area has a suspended ceiling framework wrapped in jute rope to give it a casual, rustic feel, further accentuating the hanging, cane lamps.
Overall the planning is introverted to afford the office space the privacy it requires, but the interior spaces are designed to promote a comfortable, open office culture.