Call Gensler one of the biggest design firms you’ve barely heard of. With 43 offices around the globe – six in California alone – the architectural behemoth has designed and built some of the world’s most recognizable buildings. And its Newport Beach office, which has been operating for three decades, is no exception. John Wayne Airport’s original redesign more than 20 years ago is in the Gensler portfolio, as is the more recently completed expansion for Terminal C. The company also recently completed Quiksilver’s Huntington Beach headquarters, and is hard at work to complete Hyundai’s 500,000-square-foot, $200-million headquarters, which will gleam brightly to those speeding by on the 405 freeway.
But while the Newport Beach office has been working on projects, it has also recently become its own client, the result of which is its brand new offices. Located in MacArthur Court, where it was previously located on the third floor, the company moved into a slightly bigger space on the ground and second floors, which gave it the opportunity to create a whole new work environment.
“The entire office was involved in the design strategy. We took a look at ourselves like we would with a client and really asked what is the future of how we want to use it,” says Kim Graham, principal and managing director at Gensler Newport Beach.
The result? “We found out that we wanted a variety of work settings,” she says. That involved creating places where its 70-plus employees can work, collaborate, meet and also experience chance interactions.
Hence the wide landing that connects the two floors and the community gallery with a small café. Call them the ultimate face-time facilitators, designed to increase interaction among some of Newport’s most talented design minds.