January 27, 2020

Florida Life - Lifestyle

Office/Home Fusions

The Home Office

William Hallisky
William J. Hallisky furnished his office with Herman Miller designs. [Photo: Mark Wemple]
Nine months ago, architect William J. (Billy) Hallisky, vice president of Meridien Design Associates in New York City, opened a satellite office in Clearwater. Hallisky decided to create a combination of residence and office, renovating a 1,000-sq.-ft. condo into a space with the comforts of home but with a professional look that makes the space appropriate for meetings.

Hallisky transformed the condo’s big bedroom into private quarters, including a sitting area with a couch, TV, desk and bed. “I can go in there and shut the door, and it’s completely my zone,” he says.

The rest of the unit serves as an office. It includes a desk, a large seating area and a conference table that can double as a dining set when Hallisky switches from work to home mode. The office features Herman Miller furniture. When colleagues from the New York office come down to work, Hallisky encourages them to bring a piece of art, creating an evolving “collection” that stays fresh and interesting.

The condo-office has enabled the company to expand without the overhead of a full office. It gives Hallisky a residence, and Meridien an investment.

To create separation between his professional and personal lives, Hallisky walks to the 7-Eleven every morning for a cup of coffee before beginning work.

“One thousand square feet of space to a New Yorker,” says Hallisky, “is just acres and acres.”

Balancing Act

SapientNitro strived to create a “live/work feel.”
When advertising/marketing firm SapientNitro moved into the iconic Sony Music building on Lincoln Road in Miami Beach last year, the company remodeled two floors to create an interesting work-life balance for its 175 employees.

Client meetings take place on the seventh floor, a more conservatively decorated space.

The sixth floor — where the creative teams work — is the centerpiece of what Matt Kujawa, the head of the office, calls the company’s “live/work feel.” The vibe is pet-friendly, kid-friendly, bright and whimsical, with 24/7 access. Team rooms allow employees to work together on projects. Recreation areas, which include a foosball table and drum set, can double as “war rooms” when account deadlines loom.

“In a client services business, we’re kind of on-call all the time,” says Kujawa, who played a lead role in the remodeling. “There’s an aspect of work that bleeds into personal life. We need to allow personal life to bleed into work in our work environment.”

Furnishings are from Ikea, with red accents and plenty of digital displays and whiteboard walls, where projects are displayed and discussed. “It’s got a positive energy. People enjoy being here,” he says.

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