Earlier this year, the CMI Workplace team took the opportunity to spend the day out of the office and enjoy a trip into London to visit some of our most valued suppliers’ showrooms.
Why is it important for CMIW to do this? It’s simple, we design day in day out using image, CAD blocks and SketchUp models, but being able to see and touch the products allows us to understand how they intercept with space, what sort of comfort level they offer, what seating positions are offered, what variations on configurations there are, how much leg room is there, where does the cable management sit and what products and accessories are complimentary to each other. Being able to review this in situ enables us to be able to bring it all to life, knowing we can offer our clients the best solutions to fit their needs
Our first visit was to Orangebox and after playing with their fancy iPad coffee machine (who knew you could pick how much foam you have on your cappuccino?) Our hosts, Aaron Gore and Simon Miller begin our tour of the showroom.
The first thing we noticed is that the Orangebox building hums on the inside, not noticeably enough to be annoying, but you notice if it stops. Why? Orangebox’s acoustic specialist informs us that it helps with acoustic masking. He demonstrated by shuffling half of our team into one of Orangebox’s air3 meeting rooms while the rest of us stayed in the main office space. With the hum turned on our brains were more focused on being distracted rather than picking up the content of what was being said in the meeting pod or in the open plan space around us. When the system was switched off the voices in the meeting room became much more distinguishable. This system is especially useful in large concrete buildings and those with exposed ceilings as they leave very little room for sound absorption. The acoustic masking ‘hum’ provides the sound relief they need to provide a comfortable working environment.
Starting from the top floor, we toured the Orangebox showroom with a mixture of new products and older more familiar elements. What was noticeable about the interior of Orangebox is that it is full of fun facts and infographics highlighting the importance of well-being – it encourages movement and hydration throughout your journey through the building.
Next stop was The Senator Groups’ new London showroom in Chaterhouse Square. After a lunch in a room with a ‘coral’ theme that divided the creative team (some loved it others hated it!), we were taken on a tour which showcased both Senator and Allermuir products side by side. Starting with Senator, we were all excited to see the new the new Palio workstation – a new innovation in shared workspace design. We were especially impressed with the new style of desk divider – think, very cool dividing roller blind! It was great to take the time to explore and interact with Senator’s new and old products and get to know their offerings better.
The Allermuir team introduced us to 3D stitching – a unique texture that they apply to their cushions and new soft seating ranges. It adds an extra tactile feature to the products and is definitely something we would not have seen from our CAD blocks.
We would like to say a big thank you to Orangebox, Senator and Allemuir for hosting us and sparing the time to show us their new products. It is very rare that all of the CMIW team are able to be out of the office at the same time due to our workload and commitments, so it was a great opportunity to be social and hear opinions as a group (the coral colour scheme at Senator as a great example!)
CMIW carefully consider which suppliers to work with on all of our projects. Collaborating with companies who truly believe in giving the best for our end customers in terms of comfort, wellbeing, innovation and at a price that matches the budget is always at the forefront of our mind.
We are thoroughly looking forward to seeing and touching more furniture and finishes when we attend Clerkenwell Design Week, which takes place in London on 22-24 May 2018.
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