Which stylish co-working space in Singapore is right for you?

Which stylish co-working space in Singapore is right for you?

Work it

Text: Adibah Isa

Two co-working spaces have cropped up in the CBD: Which one floats your boat? We break down Collective Works and The Great Room for you to take your pick

The Great Room and Collective Works sprung up in June this year to much fanfare from businesses looking for an alternative office and social space. Co-founder and CEO Jaelle Ang of The Great Room came to the rescue, with experience developing properties such as Capella Hotel and the Four Seasons in Singapore as well as the Four Seasons Private Residences in Bangkok. Founder and CEO Jonathan O'Byrne's already familiar to the business of co-working, having started Collective Works' first outlet, located at Cecil Street.

They're both bang on location in Grade A buildings — The Great Room's located on the tenth floor of 1 George Street, just a five minute walk from Raffles Place MRT. Meanwhile, Collective Works sits itself on the entire twelfth floor of Capital Tower, directly above Tanjong Pagar MRT.

Taking up a 15,000-square feet space, The Great Room comprises of Dedicated Offices for teams of two to 20, and Hot Offices that serve as private offices on demand for one to four people. Meeting or conference-type solutions lie in studios, which can be used for a meeting room for 12, workshop for 20 or presentation for 30. A grand State Room serves as a boardroom for 14 people. For the individual, you can choose between the hot or dedicated desks.

At 22,000-square feet, Collective Works comprise of private and public offices as well as 10 meeting rooms. A plus? The recording studio, which is equipped with acoustic paneling and designed for the modern entrepreneur: Think podcasts, blogging, and vlogging. 

Entering The Great Room's akin to checking into a posh boutique hotel. Think: Swatches of marble, timber, brass and velvet, accompanied by lots of leather. There's even a hint of snakeskin, by way of a tray holding an hour glass and other glass ornaments. Of course, you'd expect no less from the guys who are responsible for the interiors of Manhattan Bar at Regent Hotel and the offices of Google and Alibaba.

Titles lying around the marble coffee tables and wooden bookshelves include Christian Liaigre's LIAIGRE Book III, The Monocle Guide to Better Living and Humans of New York. In partnership with Artling, works by Singapore-based artists — including Marcel Heijnen — frame the walls. Employing the same lighting designers behind Marina Bay Sands and the Fullerton Hotel Singapore, The Great Room switches between using warm, mood and office-friendly lights that don't strain your eyes. Then there's the natural light of course, courtesy of the space's floor-to-ceiling windows.

If they're friends, The Great Room's the broody, mysterious one while Collective Works' the flirty, sassy type — complete with millenial-friendly catchphrases like "you'd better work" and "work it". In fact, those are etched onto the floor-to-ceiling glass walls which separate private offices from communal desks. A 12-metre living wall greets you the moment you enter Collective Works, and as you meander your way round the space, you'll be met with different primary colour accents on a base of white.

Its no frills approach is done in the most functional and stylish of ways, with quirky desk accessories we recognised from kikki.K. "You need a little bit of insanity to do great things," said a saying on one of their desks — and we couldn't agree more.

Imagine doing shavasana after a long day in the office, right in your office itself. It's possible at The Great Room, where a studio is used for yoga sessions every Tuesday evening. To rid yourself of Monday blues, a complimentary Monday Breakfast Club with croissants and Papa Palheta coffee is an ideal perk up. Also easing your day is a warm cookie by way of a turn down cart that's wheeled around the space. At Collective Works, a trolley comes around your desk every Friday between that dreaded post-lunch slump with a cake. Yes, please.

The Great Room offers a day pass at $70 per day as well as monthly memberships from $175 for a virtual office to $1,260 for a Hot Office. Monthly memberships for Collective Works start from $240 for a regular desk to $2,000 for a private office.

Last word:
We like The Great Room for its classy, gentleman's club swankiness a la Mad Men, but we also love Collective Works' youthful and sprightly vibe. Ultimately, it boils down to what you or your company needs right now — either way, rest assured your work day's going to be a great one.

Visit the websites of The Great Room and Collective Works for more details.