Gensler creatives spent four months with AirBnB employees to understand their culture and ethos before designing their headquarters in the SOMA district of San Francisco. The former industrial building now features a central atrium space that filters in sunlight, complete with a GSky Green Wall that boats 1,226 square feet of greenery stretched over three floors. A distinct residential theme also runs throughout the office; individual office spaces are all replicas of actual homes that can be rented through the company website.
Some of the replicas scattered throughout the new AirBnB headquarters include a Parisian apartment, a home in Bali, and a room in Milan. This theme presents itself in other areas as well – the cafeteria resembles a large kitchen environment and boardrooms feel more like a cozy living room than anything else. There’s even a place for employees to lay their head down for a nap.
Although employees have assigned desks, they can choose to work wherever they want on any day. Collaboration and informal meetings are encouraged, an aspect of the company’s culture served by open spaces and informal areas for communication.
The office also features a wall of art pieces by designer and illustrator Timothy Goodman. His work depicts “moments” that represent experiences the employees have shared over the years. This ties in with the desire of Airbnb founders to create a new home office that reflects the company’s values, while also allow their employees to experience travel without actually leaving the building.
Images by Carlos Chavarria and Leslie Williamson