Boasting three decades of industry-based experience and a flare for large-scale projects, ACTWO Architects are the brains behind this week’s innovative startup tech office belonging to new kid on the block, Kayak. Providing online services in travel, it is little coincidence that some critics have likened Kayak’s sleek new headquarters to some of the world’s most impressive airport terminals. There certainly is a strong energy about this space and its composition is such that it facilitates flow, setting the scene for activity that is fast-paced and efficient. Predominantly white, few areas are monochrome and a Kayak-brand-orange features boldly and repetitively.
Though suitably compartmentalized, Kayak’s headquarters, rather than feeling closed off, come across as a fundamentally open space, which one imagines, is how it should feel to feel to those who work within its, often glass, walls. The permeable nature of its more private interiors, such as meeting and conference rooms, use only a subtle frosted glazing to obscure the view of those outside and cocoon those working within only when seated. Though, in this way, the glass is highly functional, it is carried though the construction’s entirety, serving a wholly more aesthetic purpose, in addition to rendering the space one in which employees can casually interact with each another.
The glass-paneled staircase, in particular, fosters a hive of activity. Upon their descent, employees arrive at a coffee bar, which spans thirty feet and acts as the centrally located heart for Kayak’s various departments.