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We recently sat down with Elliott Sparsis, Head of UK at Convene, to learn more about their first ever international location, with a design by Woods Bagot.
Elliott Sparsis, Head of UK at Convene
Convene, the US-founded premium meetings, events, and workspace company, has opened its first ever international location. Set within the iconic 22 Bishopsgate Tower in the City of London, this new destination reflects the brands’ focus on amenity, hospitality, and experience – giving users an elevated offer akin to that of a 5-star hotel.
Woods Bagot led on the interior design and delivery of Convene’s UK address, spanning over 50,000 sq ft of state-of-the-art event spaces. Embodying the uniqueness of London, the design was influenced by the concept of the ‘Modern Livery’. There are 110 livery companies, comprising London’s ancient and modern trade associations and guilds – and much like the origin of these ‘Liverys’, Convene provides a platform for creators and innovators alike.
Convene 22 Bishopsgate is a new key venue in our portfolio, and not only because it’s the first one outside the US.We had the unique opportunity of working closely with the landlord of the building to help develop a new workplace standard, contributing to the creation of a functioning building ecosystem, where Convene is fully ingrained in its offering. As a result, nearly 80% of the building’s tenants are using Convene for internal and external meetings, as well as other corporate events.In developing this space, we were excited to work with Woods Bagot, not only because of our experience working together on US projects but also because the firm has a well-established London office and so they were able to design a space for an international audience that is rooted in local influences and history.
Our work patterns have undoubtedly changed, and our workspaces are now competing with the cosy and comfortable design of our homes. In the era of the experience economy, customers are seeking out quality and so the office must be reimagined as a destination rather than a mere place of work.
We offer an elevated workplace experience guided by principles of hospitality, including beautiful design, a welcoming arrival, a dedicated workplace team, and a unique food and beverage offering around which the sociable common area is created. On a macro level, the hospitality industry is shifting away from an identical design that represents the stamp of their brand to instead design unique, one-of-a-kind spaces that reflect and meld with the surrounding neighbourhoods, and this is exactly what we achieved at 22 Bishopsgate.
Design and hospitality have been setting Convene apart since inception and our location at 22 Bishopsgate is no different. The project has successfully been designed for a market that was new to us, with different requirements and tastes.
We seek to continue our journey in the UK, learning from the success of this venue, which has been able to become an essential offering in this new building; we elevated its amenity offering and created a destination that all tenants can and want to visit.
“In the era of the experience economy, customers are seeking out quality and so the office must be reimagined as a destination rather than a mere place of work.”