House of Concrete is not the prison the name suggests. Far from it, in fact. It’s the HQ of Concrete, a design company responsible for some crisp, eye-catching work all over Holland and beyond. We’ve Hearted a couple of their previous efforts here and here. And if you’re a group of talented designers, what better way to showcase your talents than by unleashing your skills on your own creative base?
A listed building dating back to 1880 may not be the most obvious home for such a forward-thinking bunch, but that’s exactly where the 35-strong team chose to call home. Spread over four storeys, the building, an annex of the Oudezijds Voorburgwal 101, is where Concrete’s architects, designers and visual marketeers come together to weave their magic into a single vision.
In House of Concrete there are the workspaces of course, decorated with personal images from each member of the team, a kitchen where interdepartmental socialising over lunch extends to a monthly cook-off, and two meeting rooms; one for formal presentations and a snug for client-free couch chats. Concrete have also made clever use of the space by doubling the staircase as a library.
It looks like a fun place to get creative, and Concrete certainly don’t take themselves too seriously. For evidence of this, look no further than the toilets, where a large sign encourages creatively-blocked employees to clear their minds, (among other things, one presumes). One minor caveat: arachnophobes may not want to spend too long gazing up at the spotlight chandeliers hanging overhead.
And look, a whole article about a building in Amsterdam’s Red Light District without resorting to a single mention of sex or drugs. If that’s not a ringing endorsement of House of Concrete, I don’t know what is.