Like other tech companies with a young and dynamic workforce, the web-hosting company Dreamhost wanted a work environment that would be easily adaptable to nonwork functions. In the modern business culture, a new profit initiative is as likely to be hatched over a cup of green tea or a game of ping-pong as in a formal meeting room. At the company's new headquarters in Brea, California, the footprint of the existing building offered attractive potential for creating vistas of space and light.
Studio O+A's interior design recognizes the lateral hierarchies favored by web companies, both in its placement of management and staff workstations and in the horizontal aesthetic that is a feature of classic Southern California architecture. O+A introduced broad, unbroken circulation paths and banks of windows and applied color and contrast to suggest both the boldness of technological innovation and the easy culture of web-based commerce.
The walls, the exposed ceiling, and portions of the floor tile are white. Against this blank canvas, sharp graphics are designed to arrest the eye. Red patterns inspired by the server room's looping wire configurations give forward momentum to a series of long, low walls. Casual seating with red cushions provides additional graphic impact.
A free-standing black conference room and lounge area serve as additional dramatic visual elements. Throughout the complex-in meeting areas, workstation clusters, and recreation spaces-the color palette communicates informality and creativity.