Barry Callebaut, the world's leading manufacturer of high-quality cocoa and chocolate products, recently expanded their Chicago office and North American headquarters, located in the landmark Montgomery Ward building.
Employees enter the space through a large, communal café that features a variety of seating and two kitchens. Display shelving features the company’s products, while a “hedge” of plants delineates seating areas and the main circulation path through the space. A communal table is accented with an eclectic mix of brightly colored chairs. The use of bold color continues in the rich-hued green kitchen cabinetry and tile backsplash. A demonstration area offers a large island for prep work and a custom product display comprised of spoons, each holding various chocolate creations.
A boardroom is located at the center of the floor, adjacent to a self-serve chocolate bar. In the workspace itself, the designers preserved the original industrial aesthetic of the space including exposed brick walls, concrete columns, wood ceilings, and large, double-hung windows which provide an abundance of natural light and views to the city and river. Nestled amongst the bench-style workstations are informal collaboration areas for smaller meetings. Conference rooms and private offices are located along the western perimeter of the floor, each fully glazed as to not prohibit natural light from reaching the interior spaces. A library space doubles as a yoga studio, providing a quiet space of respite within the office.
Designers: Solomon Cordwell Buenz (SCB)
Contractor: Clune Construction
MEP Engineer: Syska Hennessy Group
Photographer: Dave Burk Photography
Main Furniture Manufacturer: Herman Miller
Furniture Dealer: Thomas Interiors
Main Flooring Manufacturer/Installer: Shaw