Gloucester, MA Cometeer, makers of the first precision-brewed, flash-frozen coffee, moved into a large production facility that needed serious updating to meet the growing company’s needs. “We had nothing but old desks when we started,” said Tess Loniewski, special projects manager at Cometeer. “We needed a team that could help us gather our vision and Ebbrell Architecture + Design was the future-forward firm we needed to bring our ideas to life,” Loniewski said.
Rachel Molé, LEED AP, interior designer at Ebbrell, said the renovations in the 12,000 s/f industrial office space took place in three phases, all of which were constructed by VBA Construction Management, with the first phase focused on branding, space planning, and furniture. “We wanted to create a mid-century inspired design that aligned with Cometeer’s retro-future branding and coffee technology culture,” said Molé. And, due to the company’s rapid growth in employees, Molé said gaining more rooms within the existing space was a top priority. They added meeting rooms, pods of desks and bench seating.
Phase II focused on programming and revisiting some spaces previously mapped out. Loniewski said, “The company was growing so rapidly, which required ongoing changes to the design plans, but the Ebbrell team celebrated that with us. They were more than flexible and rolled with the punches with enthusiasm.”
Among the favorite spaces for the Cometeer staff is the Sensory Bar. Loniewski said it is the focal point of the office and commended Molé’s research into the specialized, high-end equipment to design a space that was functional and aligned with the company’s brand. The Sensory Bar, where the coffee team performs quality control tests, samples new coffees, and shares the latest brews with colleagues, was among Molé’s favorite aspects.
“We took an existing dated kitchen that was virtually unusable for Cometeer’s needs and transformed it into a space that is instrumental in their product development process.”
The third stage of the 18-month phased project focused on the lobby and was a huge branding moment. “We created a custom wall covering for the three story elevator shaft and added pendant lights, both of which were a nod to Cometeer’s products and packaging,” said Molé. “The whole space was tied together with matte black and cream pin-stripes,” she said.
Miika Ebbrell, AIA, LEED AP, founder, and principal of Ebbrell Architecture + Design said, “We were thrilled to work with this innovative tech start-up and share in their excitement as their company and space aligned in both growth and vision.”
And while the project was completed in the shadow of the pandemic in a building fully occupied, Paul Votze, president of VBA Construction Management said, “Safety and COVID protocols were strictly adhered to. The Project team at Ebbrell and VBA worked well together with Cometeer during pre-construction to identify and schedule any scope challenges which lead to a very smooth project delivery.”
Loniewski added, “We value the Ebbrell and VBA teams’ expertise and are grateful to them for guiding us to create a beautiful workplace that reflects the growth of our business.”