Mindspace, a global coworking and flex space operator with over 30 locations in seven countries worldwide, enlisted The Lighting Practice to translate their brand through lighting at their third U.S. location in Philadelphia, following San Francisco and Washington, D.C.
Located at the historic Wanamaker Building, Mindspace Philadelphia boasts approximately 42,000 square feet of flexible office space, event areas, and lounges. The Lighting Practice was tasked with illuminating the space to provide a productive, comfortable atmosphere, yet also reinforcing the bespoke Mindspace brand and emphasizing the building’s landmark architecture through decorative lighting elements.
Nostalgic pendants and chandeliers punctuate the primarily open space concept and resonate with the historic character of the space, while integrated wireless wall controls and occupancy sensors offer flexibility and functionality to accommodate a very multifunctional space.
“The design team was tasked with preserving the beautiful historic character of the space, with its crown molding and cornices, while also layering in the Mindspace brand. To preserve the plaster ceilings throughout, recessed lighting was not allowed,” shared Jered Widmer, Principal at The Lighting Practice. “We had to get creative and find discreet surface-mounted fixtures that could provide that layer of functional lighting. Through careful coordination, we were able to put the focus on the decorative lighting elements while hiding the functional lighting that added contrast and depth to the space”.
In smaller conference rooms, The Lighting Practice designed a suspended track system. This solution highlights the rich, dark finishes and accents art on the walls while also focusing functional light where it is needed. The design creates intimate, highly flexible meeting rooms.
Another challenge of the project was rendering the brand for a U.S. market. Originally based in Europe, Mindspace had a unique vision for their space that varied slightly from the traditional U.S. interpretation of coworking spaces, including a preference for specific decorative fixtures that were only available to the European market. The Lighting Practice worked closely with Mindspace, the architect, and several manufacturers to ensure the Mindspace brand aesthetics were represented while accommodating the budget and meeting U.S. lighting requirements.
“Ultimately, we were very successful in translating Mindspace’s unique brand standards and expectations, even in the midst of the pandemic,” remarked Pomme Lee, Associate at The Lighting Practice. “We worked closely with lighting manufacturers to find similar products available to us that would convey their brand in a cost-effective way”.
The variety of users in the space also raised an issue in terms of lighting design. Mindspace caters to companies of all sizes, from small startups to global corporations such as Microsoft, Samsung and Yahoo.
“With a coworking space, you don’t know the occupants or their specific needs,” said Jered. “The user could be a freelance writer or an interior design team. We needed to create a universal solution that could fit almost any need with flexibility to accommodate user preferences”.
Mindspace Philadelphia launched in August of 2021, with a successful lighting design that evokes hospitality and excitement, along with flexibility to allow Mindspace to grow and adapt with their members.