Whitepages Hungary


Design Office of the Year 2014 - II. helyezett

Year of build: 2013Q4

Size: 259 m²

Number of employees: 10

Tenant: Whitepages Hungary


In the tower of Madách Trade Center located in downtown Budapest, a living tree connects vertically the 11th and 12th floors of Whitepages, in order to draw attention to transparency, development and continuous progress. It is the company’s ars poetica depicted by a nature-based concept, which fulfils the requirements of the ideal workplace of the 21st century. This office became the European headquarters of the parent company, Whitepages Inc., located in Seattle.

Whitepages built an office with a full panoramic view of Budapest, with which the company positions itself perfectly in the transparent online world. The company placed its open office work stations in large commonplace areas in order to encourage the team-work of the employees who specialize in strategic problem solving.

Nikola Martinovic, the Serbian interior architect of the project, created an office, where the internal design does not disturb the spectacle, thus providing a panoramic view of Budapest. In this vividly coloured, pleasant environment, besides the working areas, there is space for relaxation in the Lounge areas including table-soccer and beer tapping.

The office of Whitepages with its roof-terrace holds the top 3 floors of Madách Trade Center. The 10th floor functions as an open space office for 10 people, and as a meeting room with movable glass walls for another 10 people. Thanks to the movable walls, the total area can easily and quickly be turned into a conference room ideal for 30 people altogether.

One floor above stands the highlight of this project, the dominant living tree, which was lifted to its final location through an exciting process. The basis of the tree is surrounded by a 4-sided wooden box from which three large monitors can pop out on which the results of the programming activities can be followed. On this floor, there is also an open-space office with workstations, and a Lounge & Bar area, with possibilities of tapping beer and having various meals.

On the top 12th floor of Whitepages, the ‘green wall’ strengthens the nature-based theme that was started with the tree concept below.  Here, the crown of the tree is surrounded by a large round shaped bar table. There is space here for active and passive relaxation: table-soccer and various comfortable chairs and sofa are available. Directional lighting emphasizes even more the large height and domelike ceiling of the area. The advantage of the centric space is that the office is naturally lightened from every direction, which light is allowed in through light transmitting window-curtains. From this area we can step out to the four terraces that provide a unique and full panorama of downtown Budapest and the Castle district.

During the refurbishment of the office, the management chose partially from the furniture supplied by Europa Design. All of the employees chose electrically adjustable tables. The planning of the workstations was based on the „sit and stand” trend, the biggest advantage of which is that the employees can change their positions while they are working, depending on the way they want to work. The American Herman Miller Embody ergonomic swivel chair was designed to agitate the user, in any position, warranting a comfortable seat for the workers of Whitepages. They also ordered CBS Flo monitor arms, which they can save up space with. The office does not need cupboards or containers because the employees do not have paperwork.

In addition to the furbishing, a great emphasis was placed also on the selection of lamps and on the creation of harmony of lights, thus the office and Lounge areas receive the most light possible. The lamps are not only great design elements, but also closely fitted into the concept of the interior decoration. A good example for that is the special zigzag-shaped lighting of the wood-paved stairway.

Also practicum, variety and complete harmony dominated during the selection of floor covers. The entrance and kitchen floor is covered with rubber, in the workspaces the floor is covered with anti-allergenic carpet, and the stage Lounge zone is floored with parquet. Most of the office walls are painted white, while the crude concrete walls of the stairway are left unpainted. In line with the nature-concept of the project, many of the central walls have been covered by real wood that hides shelves within, thus functioning as built-in cupboards.

The Budapest office of Whitepages meets the company’s expectations of international offices with its complete internal design and with its full panoramic view originating from its location. The depiction of the firm’s philosophy, the use of natural wooden elements and the living tree concept have a powerful effect on the office. All of these sophisticated ideas and perfectly designed details position the new Whitepages office at a high level in the capital’s office-market and business life.

Reasons why the nominee deserves the award

  • Close to nature internal design with unique wall coverings, with living tree connecting the floors, and with living ‘green walls’, plants.

  • Individual graphic design to suit the profile of the company

  • Unique round shaped bar table that surrounds the crown of the tree at the top floor

  • Elaborate lighting and transmission technologies adapted to the properties of the dome like ceiling and large height on top floor

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