We’ve entered a new phase of “work,” in which cubicles are making way for a wholly different kind of office space setup. With a rapidly growing number of independent workers—freelancers now make up 35 percent of the U.S. workforce—coworking spaces have proliferated to cater to a new kind of work lifestyle: one that favors flexibility, creative ownership and collaboration.
Across the country and around the world, collaborative workspaces of all shapes and sizes are emerging with a focus on inclusivity, openness and affordability. While the established key player, WeWork, indeed serves a glorified purpose, the broader coworking movement brings with it a number of desirable alternatives.
Here, we explore seven unique coworking spaces in the U.S. that have bursted onto their local scene with community-minded missions and drool-worthy interiors to boot.
New Women Space is a woman-focused community space in East Williamsburg that aims to empower women through events, workshops and coworking hours. Their mission is togetherness, and their small space in Brooklyn exudes an open air and a collaborative, homey environment. “We believe there is a healing effect of gathering in person to have open, authentic conversations,” says co-founder Melissa Wong. They offer drop-in coworking throughout the week and the option to rent out the space to work with your team instead of huddling in a coffee shop. The entire concept is built around “defining your space” and it’s a great antidote to those seeking both community and an inviting place to work.
New Orleans, La.
This coworking space in New Orleans is made for veterans. As owner Robert Armbruster puts it, “I wanted to create a space where vets can come and be in a shared workspace with other vets that are going through the same challenges.” The result is a 30,000 sq ft. facility with both private offices and social areas as well as a full gym, showers and locker rooms. It’s a community-minded space that hones in on creating and fostering business opportunities for vets with inclusivity in mind.
The Pioneer Collective is an independently-owned space in Seattle, founded by a husband and wife team passionate about design. With their design-leaning mission comes an impressive and artful space with envious interiors. As co-owner Chris Hoyt says, “The grassroots ideals of the space have persisted and informed both the design of the space and the makeup of the community.” Its members appreciate the warmth and fluidity that the space offers as it adds to its charm, as opposed to more corporate coworking environments.
At the center of the RiNo district of Denver (one of our favorites cities to work remotely!) sits Enterprise Coworking, boasting modern office spaces for individual teams and larger companies alike. Its interiors have just the right dash of color to boost your creativity yet don’t leave you too distracted, and the space was built with the entrepreneurial spirit in mind. Founder Josh Fine envisioned “copious communal spaces throughout the building where members can mix and network in a variety of environments” and the result is an impressive mix of wellness-focused rooms, a pub, espresso bar and rooftop lounge.
This wellness-based coworking space lives inside a yoga studio, which offers an abundance of natural light plus aromatherapy and a guided meditation practice should you choose. “Our workspace is designed to inspire and create balance so folks can get their best work done,” says founder Debra Perlson-Mishalove. The team here really takes the whole work/life balance thing to heart, and embodies what (we hope!) will soon become the new norm in coworking hot spots that are as much about productivity as it is about promoting the wellness and wellbeing of every individual.
Workbar’s coworking space in Brighton, Mass. (one of eight total in Massachusetts) is an ode to the increasing blur between work and home life. Founder Bill Jacobson was pretty keen on creating an “inspiring yet convenient workspace that is not quite an office and not quite a home” and the result is a partnership with Staples to bring this to life. Amenities include different workspace areas from the more traditional set-ups, to a more cafe like feel, adding a dynamic touch to the coworking arena.
Rough Draft labels itself as a creative studio in Brooklyn, one where artists, creatives and collaborators alike can come and enjoy the living room vibes with full amenities. The space is small but vibrant and colorful, with huge windows that are fun to stare out of when you need inspiration. Owners and husband and wife team, Glenn Pajarito and Alison Zullo, hail nearby from Bushwick and are creative directors themselves. “We like to think of Rough Draft as a hybrid of your living room and favorite coffee shop but without the distractions that come along with each of those spaces,” says Alison.
Got any unique coworking spaces in the U.S. to recommend? Let us know in the comments below!