With a lack of connection between the staff at headquarters and hotel properties, Hyatt employed Gensler to consolidate several offices throughout Chicago and bring them into the 21st century.
Hyatt’s move to 150 N. Riverside Plaza brought this Chicago-based hospitality corporation’s colleagues together under one roof in a new architectural landmark. With a renewed focus on its distinctive brands, Hyatt found its current workplace to inhibit the kind of interdisciplinary thinking and cross-functional collaboration necessary to compete in the fast-paced hospitality industry.
As part of the overall design concept, our team incorporated Hyatt’s seven guest touchpoints utilised in designing the guests’ journey throughout their stay at any hotel, all to build empathy between the employees at the headquarters and those working in almost 700 hotels around the world.
This experiential lens includes an arrival and departure experience, food and beverage offerings, guestrooms, events, meetings, services, and other experiences, which is how Hyatt headquarter employees now experience their day. With special attention paid to arrival and departure, the team created a new concept that resulted in “Hub 8,” a multipurpose reception, co-working, meeting, event, and food and beverage-focused environment that provides additional spaces for free-address colleagues to work, meet, and socialize.
In addition, we ensured a new experience for Hyatt employees so that everyone would have a seat—in a way that met their needs and supported the way they worked. No more “one size fits all.” In customised WorkSuites, the best attributes of private offices – privacy, the ability to meet on-demand, and a sense of ownership – combine with the best attributes of open-plan environments – flexibility, camaraderie, and lateral awareness – in a new model workplace strategy.
Now, countless iterations of collaboration space and individual nooks for focus or one-on-one conversations joined with appropriate amenities support an environment of connection and innovation. Connected with a monumental brick stair, the WorkSuite floors are paired at localized, social and collaborative hubs that provide neighbourhood-level interaction with sweeping views of the Chicago cityscape.
Looking at the employee experience through the lens of the guest experience and inspired by the intertwined legacies of the Pritzker Prize and Chicago’s architectural heritage, Hyatt’s new headquarters – The Hyatt Hub – floats above the confluence of two branches of the Chicago River as a new urban landmark. Arrival in the buzzing, active, co-working lounge complete with customized food and beverage offerings is the community hub that connects the work floors above to the heart of the company’s culture. It’s the new, hospitality-infused front door for Hyatt.
Photography by Rafael Gamo