Spanish studio selgascano has dreamt up an office space in Lisbon that’s sure to make everyone green with envy. Set in the popular food market Mercado da Ribeira, a new, 1,115-square-meter [12,000-square-foot] creative hub and cultural venue — designed by José Selgas and Lucía Cano — is decked out in 1,000 potted plants and trees.
The project was created for Second Home Lisboa, a London-based creative accelerator that hosts companies in a co-working environment. Built in 1882, the historic building’s large program allows for the office to exist in a large, L-shaped open space flanked by column-shaped iron windows and iron-cast trusses in the roof. Like the nave of a cathedral, the lengthy space is expansive but with a smaller floor-to-ceiling ratio.
Small companies renting the space are designated to sharing 70-by-10-meter [230-by-33-foot] tables that are sectioned in three. The tables are cut into curves so members have a private area to focus. Mid-century chairs and furnishings decorate the space.
The L-shaped program is divided into a main workspace and smaller café/bar and lounge area. While the office maintains an airy atmosphere thanks to massive windows, skylights and an exposed white ceiling, the community space gives off a more relaxed, contemporary coffeehouse vibe. The blue-painted ironwork, low-lights and small tables and chairs give members a chance to unwind and socialize. The space also features a library and four private meeting rooms.
With a dense abundance of vegetation placed purposefully throughout the office, the space becomes a veritable greenhouse. The plants not only promote privacy and good air quality in the workspace, they also give members a strong sense of connection to nature. In addition, the plants help reduce the energy consumption of the building.
The architects eliminated the needs for air conditioning by installing a radiant floor for cooling and heating that works in tandem with the natural ventilation controlled through motors and parts taken from the conventional greenhouse system.
Selgascano rose to fame for their design of the 2015 Serpentine Pavilion that featured a colorful, plastic-wrapped structure constructed out of metal arches. Second Home Lisboa is the second project that the duo has created for the co-working company. Their headquarters in London, completed in 2014, received rave reviews from design enthusiasts around the world.
Also including a more modest selection of plants and trees, the main features of this project were an orange tunnel that extends from the façade and a “flying” table. Members of the Lisbon office have access to the London office, as well.
The new space can house up to 250 workers. Current members include Vice Portugal, digital marketing agency Monday and food-ordering app Levoo. Second Home hosts a cultural and well-being program that includes yoga and pilates, a lunchtime run club and a shuttle to the coast for surfers.
Second Home wanted to make a space that catered to the physical and psychological well-being of its members. With seglascano’s vision of an indoor arboretum combined with Second Home’s goal of creating community-centric, healthy co-workspaces, Second Home Lisboa is the very essence of an office employee’s green work-life dream.
Photos by Iwan Baan via seglascano