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Marlin Equity Partners first worked with Peldon Rose in 2016, when the design and build company created a distinct London base in Victoria for the investment firm. As the company grew, the time came to ask, ‘Who will Marlin be in 2023?’. After running a competitive tender process, the business once again returned to its trusted partner to deliver a new type of workplace; one which shattered the corporate mould and created a Marlin ecosystem that will thrive well into the future.
Relocating to a 14,000 sq ft position on the fourth floor of One Newman Street, Marlin plugged itself straight into the heart of London’s West End. Striving for a workplace design that reflected the buzz of its new location, Peldon Rose wasn’t afraid to show they could deliver even more than Marlin thought possible.
Led by a minimalist philosophy, the design focuses on subtle but fundamental details, making the most of the natural light and views of Oxford Street. Mirroring the precise and analytical nature of the financial sector, the design team paid meticulous attention to each element. The materials used throughout the space were carefully curated, with small, cohesive details creating a sense of harmony and continuity throughout the office.
Taking a minimalist approach didn’t prevent the design and build team from being bold and creating an exciting and unconventional working environment. The poured concrete floor is an unusual choice for an office space. Finished to a high quality, it adds a sense of prestige and permanence as soon as employees and visitors walk through the door. The considerately curated furniture specification demonstrates a departure from the traditional corporate style, introducing a more residential and informal atmosphere, that is free from the pressure and restraints often associated with typical corporate environments.
The fresh and creative approach, that is prominent in the main social space, provides an unparalleled sense of arrival into the heart of Marlin’s culture and is the centre of everything happening at the firm. Throughout the day, the space transforms from coffee bar, to restaurant, to drinks lounge, with furniture more in keeping with a hospitality setting than a conventional breakout space. Whether celebrating success as a team, welcoming a new client or partner into the fold, or collaborating on a project, this space delivers an empathetic and stylish answer to who Marlin will be in 2023 and beyond.
As well as delivering on culture, it was just as important for the company’s new workplace to equip its people to keep working with speed, focus and flexibility – principles on which it has built its success. Marlin was keen to acknowledge how employee working habits have changed over recent years and understood that people would be returning to the office looking for something different than when they left.
Peldon Rose created a variety of working environments, including an individual desk space, for each of the 50 employees, alongside collaborative areas intended to spark creativity. Throughout the design and build process, attention was paid to the acoustics of each working area, with privacy prioritised in individual phone booths, and sound from meeting and collaboration spaces prohibited from spilling into open plan areas.
Jonny Musker at Marlin Equity Partners described why providing choice was critical to looking after colleagues’ wellbeing: “Everyone came back to the office more conscious of how they feel at work, and with more experience of different working environments. We wanted to give people the power to choose how they worked best and Peldon Rose helped us achieve that without tipping the balance too far in any one direction.”
Providing an element of choice, and designing spaces which prioritise people’s sensory experiences, is an invaluable step towards an office that acknowledges the needs of the entire workforce, including those with neurodiverse conditions. Acoustic barriers that prevent overstimulation, and areas designed for social collaboration, allow everyone to realise their own version of a productive working environment. Likewise, extensive biophilia and plenty of natural light provide an antidote to the busy city and soften the transition back into London.
It was fantastic to work with Marlin Equity again. So much about the role of the workplace and people’s working habits has changed since 2016, and the team at Marlin understood that a traditionally corporate space wouldn’t cut it anymore. We wanted to challenge them and ourselves to ask what a more open, flexible working environment would look like for the company, and then make it happen.
Marlin’s new workplace at One Newman Street demonstrates how the company has grown since 2016 and is ready to move to the next level. For Peldon Rose, it was an opportunity to challenge past designs and embrace the changes that have happened to working practices in the meantime. The end result of this partnership is a destination ready for Marlin’s even brighter future, a workplace that is healthier, more diverse and more productive than ever.