International House, Australia

Designed by: HASSELL
For client: Confidential Client Floor area: 6720.00 M² Year of completion: 2018
Submitted for: Large Office of the Year

Hassell International House Socialhub1
© Nicole England

Custom joinery at the northern end of the floor plate provide a social hub for coming together and engaging.

About the Project

Creating a fitout for a landmark building is a unique opportunity and an immense responsibility. For this workplace project at International House – Australia’s first engineered timber commercial building – respect for the architecture was at the heart of the design process.
At the time of completion, International House set a new benchmark in the use of sustainable building materials in the Asia Pacific region. But, the building is significant in many ways because it is also the gateway to Barangaroo - Sydney’s prestigious new commercial precinct.
HASSELL showcased the bones of the building yet still responded to the client’s need for a welcoming, informal, connected workplace that celebrates the ingenuity and innovation of its employees.
HASSELL approached the project as though it was part of a heritage building. That meant revealing – not concealing – the inherent beauty and intricacy of the architecture, defined by cross-laminated timber and Glulam timber beams.
The workplace fulfils the company’s need for a flexible and diverse working environment. Employees can choose from a range of work settings from collaborative spaces to individual focus pods, depending on their task. The various areas have a distinctive look and feel to delineate between the different activities, creating an intuitive user experience.
A dedicated client floor welcomes visitors with a multifunction open space, flexible conference and meeting rooms, and an in-house barista kiosk.

What’s unique about it

The building’s unique construction in CLT and Glulam is most visible internally, exposed and contrasted with the carefully reticulated and visible services, painted black. Respect was paid to the architecture by enhancing it with the workplace design, maintaining the neutral tones and complementing these with spots of colour. The design incorporates SVL, an environmentally friendly timber product, in the construction of the worktops.
The open workplace design provides clear sightlines across the floor and out to the burgeoning Barangaroo precinct. These visual links – between people across the interior and between the internal and external environment – create a sense of connection and belonging.
On the client floor, bespoke curved meeting pods work within the structure of the building, minimise the need for plasterboard ceilings and maximise the architectural expression.
The different work zones have set locations and a distinctive feel within the workplace. Social hubs and collaborative areas have custom joinery and large communal tables at the northern end – they are active and lively - while smaller, quieter spaces at the southern end of the building are surrounded by lush greenery that make them feel calm and peaceful.
Ensuring staff have readily available opportunities to reconnect with nature and recharge throughout the day, large-scale planting across the floors gives staff options for restorative breaks through communal social gardens and quiet green rooms.

Hassell International House Mixedspace
© Nicole England

Work floors offer a mix of formal and casual settings for collaboration and connection with colleagues.

Hassell International House Workstations
© Nicole England

SVL worktops are used in the workstation construction maintaining the environmentally sustainable ethos of the architecture.

Hassell International House Baristakiosk
© Nicole England

Guests are treated to an in-house coffee at the barista kiosk.

Hassell International House Clientfloor
© Nicole England

The client floor is a welcoming space with a variety of settings in which to meet and collaborate. Large windows provide views to the outer precinct and allow an abundance of natural light in to the space.

Hassell International House Bespokepod2
© Nicole England

Bespoke meeting pods on the client floor enhanced by the perimeter garden and views to the outside neighbourhood. The neutral tones complementing the building's architecture.

Hassell International House Bespokepod1
© Nicole England

Bespoke meeting pods on the client floor enhanced by the perimeter garden and views to the outside neighbourhood. The neutral tones complementing the building's architecture.

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