RYE, N.Y. – Lonely freelancers seeking office camaraderie and business people telecommuting part of their workday may find solace and inspiration in a new members-only “co-working” space coming to Rye called Serendipity Labs.
“The most trusted workers can make their own choices about how and when they work,” says John Arenas, CEO of Serendipity Labs who also lives in Rye. “Oftentimes they’re not given traditional space, so they’re working from wherever they can make it work, which can be good. But it isn’t really good all the time, everyday.”
The old Biltmore building at 80 Theodore Fremd Ave. in Rye is being repurposed into plush work areas such as “enclaves” (private offices), a work bar with stools and a work lounge that will more closely resemble a hotel lobby than a traditional cubicle-filled room. “We shudder when people call it office space,” says Arenas.
The concept of co-working space is not revolutionary. Communities such as Independents Hall in Philadelphia and Hive At 55 in lower Manhattan have been in existence for the past few years. However, they rarely exist in the suburbs. Serendipity plans to open a midtown-Manhattan office by year’s end, and its network will eventually expand from D.C. to Boston. But the company’s first location will open in Rye by the first week of October.
Arenas stresses the need for not only social interaction among the telecommuters and freelancers but also the desire for life outside the home. “People make excuses to go check the mail and to go on errands just to get out from the desk,” he says.
The location will be staffed by a team trained in “world-class hospitality standards,” while Internet and phone service will be provided by OASIS, the proprietary cloud-based technology platform.
Untethered workers can choose memberships based on their needs. Those who need a primary place to conduct business can choose a “Resident Membership.” Others who may want unlimited access can get the “Coworker Membership” while “Mobile” members can have a more limited plan if they need a workplace for only a few days a month.
“The way we’ve designed, it’s about not just how one works from day-to-day, but during the entire day,” said Arenas. “No matter which level of membership, you can have another community, another place to go when the in-laws have been visiting too long and you can’t get any work done, and also a place to change things up or meet a colleague in a professional setting.”
Serendipity Labs is likely to see up to 30 members a day during the peak hours of 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and will offer member events in the evenings, Arenas says.
“We’re looking forward to being a vibrant part of the Rye community and adding to the work lifestyle of people that live in and around Rye,” Arenas said.
For membership sales or more information on Serendipity Labs, call 1-800-226-3678.