A former 1889 warehouse is the home of Victoria’s new co-working space, Kwench
There was a time, not so long ago, when, incredibly, WeWork and its co-working model were considered revolutionary. So much so that its iterations have continued to multiply apace, morphing into endless ranks of hybrids at a dizzying speed.
The latest to come online is Kwench, a multi-functional culture club whose DNA tweak is, in the words of its founder Tessa McLoughlin, ‘a space where members have access to all the resources they need to live a full and balanced lifestyle’ – to wit, a host of value-add services and features including art studio and installations, event spaces and a wellness component, the latter anchored by meditation and yoga classes.
Housed in a former warehouse built in 1889 in Victoria’s Old Town quarter to store its streetcars, the 25,000 cavernous volume is capped by a glass atrium and was transformed by MJM Architecture and interiors studio Hansenbuilt Design into a series of naturally lit nooks to hold, among other things, meetings, hot-desks and private offices for up to 28, kitchen, and library.
The mood is lifted with pops of colour – canary yellow couches, swooping murals by local illustrator Lydia Beauregard and Vancouver-based graphic artist Paula Gonzales, and hanging greens – to contrast the rugged retro heft of exposed timber rafters, steel beams. §