Telecom, tech, Toronto and design: They all unite at Beanfield headquarters.
Situated on the fourth floor of the Toronto Carpet Factory building in Liberty Village, Beanfield Metroconnect is hardly your average telecom company.
While you may expect many offices to drab, fluorescent-lit grey spaces, filled with rows and rows of tiny cubicles, Beanfield exceeds all possible expectations.
It is actually an impeccably designed, modern loft space that feels a lot like (a very trendy) home.
Designed by II BY IV Design, Beanfield Metroconnect’s headquarters combines work with play in the most modern sense, without ever actually compromising the work aspect of things.
Clients walk through a giant glass door into an open-concept, naturally lit oasis. The building’s original elements — that date back to 1899 — were carefully considered when designing the space, and are incorporated into the office.
Its extra-high, exposed ceiling, vintage telecom pieces, original red brick and industrial looking accents set the vibe.
But it wasn’t always this cool.
While Beanfield has been around since 1988 and is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, Beanfield opened its doors at this location back in ’97, beneath its current digs in the basement of the building.
Today, the main floor greets clients with ample natural light, provided by the almost floor-to-ceiling windows and glass front offices. The marble reception desk sits behind a tall wooden beam, adorned by a vintage telephone and two gifted real vintage Toronto street signs: Dufferin St. and Liberty St., of course.
It actually feels like the swanky lobby of a boutique condo, complete with a cozy seating area that sits under an array of drop lights and more floor-to-ceiling windows.
Local Toronto graffiti artist, SKAM, was commissioned to do a few pieces throughout the space. Most notably, an epic mural of the Toronto skyline as a backdrop. The word “CONNECT” is sprawled across in bold green graffiti lettering, in classic SKAM-style.
Another cool aspect of the mural, which could appeal to the telecom-obsessed, is the highlight of 151 Front — the Internet hub of Toronto. It’s where all Canadian providers meet up to exchange data, detailed with yellow lines representing Beanfield’s fibre network.
And in real time, Beanfield actually keeps a large chunk of Toronto connected, supplying most of the Waterfront with Beanfield network, along with over 600 commercial buildings and over 120 residential buildings in the downtown core.
They also work hand in hand with some realtors to provide “Beanfield ready” options for prospective condo buyers, as well as provide prospective clients with the option to see which buildings are “Beanfield ready” via their website.
Another notable element, Beanfield’s design represents Toronto and the importance of locality.
Not only is this statement visible throughout its space, but it’s also an integral part of the brand as a whole.
And the design of the space was intended to help elevate customer service.
Reps are sprawled throughout, working off of each others’ ideas. They are always a rolling-chair away should anyone need assistance.
The corporate culture reverberates off the walls: the whole team present, working with each other in an expansive space.
Upstairs, the fully-stocked kitchen and lounge area are envy-worthy. With Steam Whistle on tap (another local advantage), a massive wooden DJ booth, and free bagels on demand, employees feel at home without ever needing to leave.
To the left of the kitchen is another airy lounge area.
Sitting beneath an exposed ceiling and wood beams decorated in twinkle lights, it’s decked out in reclaimed wooden stools, a flat-screen TV, two massive couches and a marble coffee table.
Oh, and lest we forget, the Xbox and PS4.
Another SKAM masterpiece is painted on the wall, which pays homage to the roots of the company and its CEO.
The story goes that the CEO of the company, Dan Armstrong, was always interested in telecom as a kid, and would hang out in the park behind his house. He’d wear his Converse shoes, creating string-can telephone lines.
So, it’s fitting how the mural depicts Armstrong as a young boy decked in Converse, listening through a string-can line on one end, and a depiction of Armstrong as a grown man, listening through a can on the other end.
While it may look like Beanfield Metroconnect is an underdog in a world of Telecom “giants,” they’re doing things the old dogs aren’t and they are doing it in style.