Dezeen promotion: Architecture practice BSA has created a "diverse spectrum" of workspaces within a disused warehouse in Saarland, Germany, as the office of ceramics company Villeroy & Boch.
Located in the municipality of Mettlach, the warehouse was simply known before as Factory N 09. It has now been transformed into contemporary offices for Villeroy & Boch, which tasked Merzig-based BSA, creative agency TRIAD and if5, with creating "the ideal workplace for every task".
The ground floor of the 4,000-square-metre building now contains what the company describes as a "marketplace" – a large, open-plan area where employees can gather and relax in between meetings or have informal catch-ups.
Its focal point is a chunky flight of timber stairs that offer a spot for staff to perch throughout the day. It can also double-up as amphitheatre-style seating for major events.
The steps rise up through a central void that extends across the building's three floors. Throughout there is a mix of boardrooms, group conference rooms hidden behind fringed curtains and a selection of flexible work areas with desks that electronically adjusted to suit the proportions of different workers.
Silent rooms offer a place for staff to concentrate. Business calls can also be taken in one of the dedicated telephone booths or Skype rooms, which come complete with sizeable monitors and wide-angle cameras.
"With its diverse spectrum of working spaces, the building breaks with conventional office structures in favour of open spaces and different working areas to foster communication and cooperation among all employees," explained the company.
"The openness of the building created by the high space also symbolises how people work at Factory N 09, namely within a culture of open communication and creative discussions."
Particular attention was paid to the toilet facilities in Factory N 09, and no two bathrooms in the building are the same. For example, some cubicles have been painted in "energy-boosting" bright colours, while others have been dressed with leafy plants to evoke jungle imagery.
All of them exclusively feature products by Villeroy & Boch.
"The toilets in the building are an excellent example of creative project solutions for sanitary facilities: no two restrooms are the same," added the company.
Villeroy & Boch was founded by Jean-Francois Boch in 1748 in the French village of Audun le Tiche. Villeroy & Boch offers products in the bathroom, wellness and tableware sectors, and is active in 125 countries.
Not solely dealing in ceramics, last year the company carried out research into what hotels of the future would look like – predictions included voice-controlled guest rooms that are able to adjust light, temperature and music and automated check-in services that use facial recognition.
To find out more about Villeroy & Boch's office, visit its website.