C-a-f-e-t-e-r-i-a. The word itself takes us back to third grade. Namely, schlepping a prison-style steel tray past a table full of catty girls who are all-too-happy to notify the entire lunchroom, “You can’t sit with us.” (*shivers run down spine). Well, lucky for the mathletes and chess-clubbers of grade school, Dropbox’s geniusly designed space isn’t the cafeteria of nightmares past. It’s quite the opposite. Visionary design firm, AvroKO has reinvented the dirty term in the most surprising and delightfully brilliant of ways.
The food hall and café serves as the “heartbeat” of the tech giant’s San Francisco headquarters. A multipurpose space designed as a catalyst for conversation and collaboration, the space evokes a “neighborhood” feel, with the intention of bringing people together around the table. AvroKO elaborates further, “Taking inspiration from one of the company’s mottos, ‘sweat the details,’ the design focuses on small features and individually crafted furniture and lighting to transform moods and create a flexible space.”
A triumph in juxtaposition, the communal space merges an eclectic mix of materials and muted colors, bringing together rich brown leathers, warm wood paneling, antique brass touches, and the sprightliest shade of robin’s egg blue. Looking upward, the food hall is punctuated with seemingly floating orb-like custom light fixtures. Outfitted with six main food stations sequestered by transparent linin screens, the multipurpose space has the capacity to transform into private pockets for meetings and brainstorming sessions.
The Juice Bar boasts handcrafted lighting that takes cues from vintage street lamps, while the entryway chandelier is appointed with adjustable frames that slide up and down a track, imitating the Muni Metro transit lines of San Francisco – both nuanced design details evoking the same neighborhood concept.
AvroKO’s transformative experience has certainly satiated our appetite for mouthwatering design details. The only thing we’re left wondering: Is Dropbox hiring?
Photography courtesy of: Garrett Rowland