Amenitize: Creating an Appealing & Convenient Workplace


​Incorporating unique and convenient amenities into an office building, whether for multitenancy or a single tenant, is a great way to create the appealing and convenient environment today’s employees desire. The right mix of amenities—both in the building and the neighborhood—can help with employee recruitment, satisfaction and retention, as well as with productivity.

Amenities Driven by Hospitality Approach

According to Cresa, a North American tenant representation firm, the live, work, play approach that is driving many commercial real estate trends and pursuits has impacted the desire and need to have amenities within office spaces. “The live-work-play trend is patterned after a hospitality approach to CRE,” wrote Reza Ahmadi, Ph.D.; Jeff Gagnon and Richardo V. Ybarra in a report on Cresa’s website. “It considers the daily tasks and pleasures that are outside of our work life, and strives to bring them into close proximity to the office.” In fact, we’re seeing a move from large lobbies of the past to more common areas and amenity spaces.

In a slideshow, National Real Estate Investor identified some of the most desired amenities that help create this hospitality approach, including convenient and healthy food options; outdoor gathering spaces; modern fitness centers; large, shared conference spaces; casual lounges and reliable Wi-Fi. The hospitality-driven amenities can go even further, including concierge services, partnerships with local service providers (hair, nails, dry cleaning, etc.) and more.

Fitness, relaxation and food are important to the hospitality approach to amenities. Quality, flexible fitness centers that offer variety, including yoga, stretching, bands and free weights, are ideal for health conscious employees. Incorporating quiet spaces and meditation spaces allow employees to refocus their minds during their fast-paced days. A deli concept brings more organic, fresh and locally-sourced food that’s idea for specific diets.

Office Experience with Amenities

Since 2010, we’ve developed many office projects across the country and incorporated a number of different amenities within them.

Office amenities include large breakroom areas with a variety of seating and uses, such as those at Xcel Energy @ 401 Nicollet in downtown Minneapolis and Gavilon World Headquarters in downtown Omaha. Both projects also incorporate employee gathering spaces outside of the breakroom that provide areas for employees to meet casually or to take their work to a more comfortable and often more home-like space. And a convenience to these downtown locations, both buildings provide underground parking.

Fitness centers have also been popular in office buildings. Providing this amenity showcases a commitment to encourage overall employee health but also creates an efficiency in that employees won’t need to work out offsite and some of their found time can funnel back into work.

Diverse Expertise Yields Amenities Experience

We take a best practice approach to all of our work, integrating what we’ve learned from developments across sectors into each new project. Therefore, when we consider office amenities, we also consider the amenities that have been key to success in multifamily and student housing developments. For example, The Nic on Fifth®, a high-rise luxury apartment building in downtown Minneapolis, showcased luxury amenities such as a large clubroom lounge, a fitness and yoga studio and concierge services. VÉLO®, which is French for bicycle, incorporated amenities ideal for bike users, including bike storage and a repair shop with tools on hand.