A 19th-century house has been transformed into a 21st-century powerhouse for ideas for Quinnipiac University’s Brand Strategy Group, which is responsible for the University’s marketing, communications, brand strategy and identity, and digital initiatives. The old house was a hard sell to the university’s client, a veteran of the advertising world who imagined a New York City loft environment. To convince the reluctant end-user that the old house could meet his vision, the design team conceived of a radical opening-up of the interior space. The concept provided a drastic departure from the compartmentalized spaces and Victorian character of the existing house. The design is characterized by the openness of the space and the playful use of finishes and color that evokes the excitement of a start-up business. There is a deliberate tension on display between the rough exposed structure of the original house and the clean new lines of the renovation – a nod to the loft-spaces the University’s client wanted to work in. A skylight-capped vertical atrium unites upper and lower work spaces and floods the building with natural light. The meeting spaces, facing one another across the atrium, promote the cross pollination of ideas between the marketing staff on the first floor and the creative staff on the second. The outcome? The space has energized the team. It has allowed more collaboration, more fun and more communication.