June 25, 2020

Juan Alberto Andrade and María José Vascones Design Flexible Office for Tech Company in Ecuador

The pinewood framework of the reticulated shelf provides abundant storage options for office supplies. Photography by JAG Studio.

While “business as usual” hardly exists right now, there is at least business. And as companies adapt to new routines, there continues to be changing needs for client-employee dynamics. For technology services company Mendotel, located in Guayaquil, Ecuador, those needs included a new space with flexibility and privacy. Designers Juan Alberto Andrade and María José Vascones took up the challenge, creating what Alberto Andrade deems “a reconfiguration of completely sealed spaces.”

The 80-square-meter space, an offshoot of Mendotel’s main office, consists of an open floor plan with a service area for employees and visitors, in addition to a workspace and training zone, each delineated by color. Gray tones indicate the employees’ workspace and training area, and blue—the brand’s color—denotes the service center, which includes a meeting space, bathroom, and cafeteria bar. While the designers formed the configuration of the room with these spatial assignments in mind, Alberto Andrade affirms that the roles of each section can easily change depending on Mendotel’s specific needs.

Planked pine wood forms a grid of glass partitions that can seal off the workspace, or open it to communication. Photography by JAG Studio.

The crowning feature of the office is a reticulated shelf fashioned from natural woods, such as pine, and featuring a series of moveable glass partitions. The shelf, which doubles as storage for office supplies, provides a private space for employees to work, promoting, as Alberto Andrade says, “visual communication between production spaces.” Together, the reticulated shelf and color-coded zones enable the Mendotel team to adjust levels of privacy and free space, as needed, making for a truly adaptable office designed to suit any situation.

A cafeteria bar and service area morphs into an enclosed workspace of natural wood. Photography by JAG Studio.
Static tables and a storage unit constitute the interior of the enclosed shelf. Photography by JAG Studio
A cafeteria bar, complete with a handwashing station, offers a space to unwind. Photography by JAG Studio.
A Pantone blue wall and floor—finished with cement and a layer of sealant—carves out a flexible meeting area in the office interior. Photography by JAG Studio.
A sliding door marks the entrance to the reticulated shelf, which features floor-to-ceiling glass partitions for privacy with visual permeability throughout. Photography by JAG Studio.

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