Lobbies for laptops

14.11.2018
Dorint Hotel, Cologne: during the day, the lobby turns into a functional co-working space and complements informal lounge areas perfectly. Photos: Tobias Vollmer

Cafés, railway carriages, parks and co-working spaces were the initial ports of call for digital nomads. And now they’ve found another place to stop in hotel lobbies, which are attractive because they’re quiet. Nowadays, cafés are noisy places with a certain pressure to buy a coffee and without the space to spread out. On the other hand, between periods when people check in and out, hotel lobbies are usually not very busy, designed to be relaxing spaces and come with exclusive furniture. These are oases for anyone without an office. Here, you can be on your own without feeling lonely, anonymous without requiring too much privacy. Lobbies are ideal for anyone whose office is anywhere; these are hybrid spaces to live and work in, which are both private and public.

Sometimes you need a little more. If the small table solutions aren’t enough in the lounge spaces, folding and flip-top tables like Confair or Timetable can provide temporary or permanent conference settings. Photos: Tobias Vollmer

Hotels have spotted the latest change in importance that the hubs of their business are taking on. While lobbies were traditionally conceived as spacious waiting, recreational and meeting areas for guests, these days, they’re very much urban transit spaces. And they invite people to linger for a while without any restrictions imposed. Large reception areas have become living rooms with small areas to work in or groups of lounge-type seating with different layouts where people can communicate or withdraw to.

Need to hold a video conference, print something out or read through a presentation? Workspaces set apart from the spacious lobby become temporary hotel offices with Wilkhahn’s Occo. Photo: Tobias Vollmer

Sofas with sockets and tray tables were pioneering items of furniture. Hotels are now responding even more accurately to the needs of the target group working in them. The furniture’s biggest challenges are the different users and their requirements. Some guests just want to check their e-mails quickly, others are coming for a lunch meeting or spend all of their working day here. They use laptops, tablets and smartphones, want to print something out or make a presentation quickly. Which is why, as well as groups of seating, conference tables, cubicles and ergonomic office chairs are increasingly putting in an appearance. And, if possible, they will adapt to the temporary users. One example is Wilkhahn’s AT office chair whose automatic weight adjustment feature is ideal if a lot of very different people are using it. Or even tables like the folding Confair or the Timetable, which can be stowed away compactly and set up and dismantled in no time.

The new and flexible lobbies are perfect for hotels. During the day, they offer an inviting space to work before reverting to a lounge in the evening. And guests don’t just book a bed but an office at the same time.

 

Click here for more information about the free-to-move AT task chair.

Click here for more information on the Occo shell-structure chair.

Click here for more information on the free-to-move ON chair.

Click here for more information on the Confair flip-top table.

Click here for more information on the Timetable conference table.