Offices will become HUBs, and the building will have to support all the adjacent needs of the users.

A good office space planning strategy, which allows flexibility over time, can pay off the costs of building and arranging a building with such spaces. It is one of the lessons of the pandemic for office building owners, for whom the multifunctional use of certain areas is now a priority. The architect You Manu He says he is currently working on several solutions to give his clients the option to adapt their spaces to more work scenarios or even to use them for another purpose, if the situation requires it.

I asked Anda Manu what the gray in the public space has been replaced in the last 30 years.

“With a lot of color, but in some cases maybe too much. In the urban environment some renovated multicolored blocks have ruined the architecture of some buildings. But again, this shows that our Latin spirit prevails. We do not have a Germanic culture where gray and black are the colors “The difference between us and them is, however, the quality of the materials and the workmanship.”

We talk to the architect You Manu about the architecture and interior design market and we find out how the needs and behavior of customers have changed in the last year.

About you

I grew up in a family of artists and I did the high school of fine arts Nicoale Tonitza, so I have a band that naturally took me to the area of ​​design and aesthetics of spaces.

The bohemian side of high school later developed in the faculty of architecture, where the technical part brought discipline and rigor in what I do.

Our architecture office, AMA Design, now has over 20 years of experience in the office space industry and our portfolio exceeds 1.8 million square meters of furnished offices, with clients from all business categories. It is the result of a team effort and we are the market leaders of this niche.

Identity and style

Our office design projects have a special identity, they are colorful and vivid. They are a combination between our Latin culture and the brand identity of each Client.

I believe that we should not import models or concepts without infusing them with local culture. I think that the care to meet the needs of the end-users of a workspace really makes the difference between an optimized space, with a special design, or just a furnishing of the space. We do not make projects for the sake of being posted as “showrooms” in the specialized press, but we make offices in which people feel good, to have through the built space an environment in which to interact effectively.

The best teachings

The specialization in this field of office design has undoubtedly brought the opportunity to work with many Office Guidelines generated by multinational companies, applicable anywhere in the world in their offices. There are principles of organizing teams in space and how they interact and they have evolved progressively in recent years.

Each project has developed this know-how in knowing the human behavior according to the specifics of the industry and the profession of the users. It’s all about how people interact during the day to work. There are creative professions that need a certain type of space, more informal, more dynamic and there are technical or financial professions that have completely different needs in the endowment of the office.

There are no mentors, there is too much information available for you to make a strict shortlist.

We remain open to anything we see fresh or that takes an interesting approach.

Pandemic vision changes

The rented area of ​​an office has considerable costs, so optimization through a space planning strategy can bring added value, not only by design, but also by finding solutions that allow flexibility over time.

The multifunctional use of certain areas is now a priority, perhaps more than ever. The office must be adaptable to several work scenarios and we are now working on solutions that offer this option.

The offices will, in fact, become HUBs and the building will have to support all the adjacent needs of the users. We work now from anywhere, from any device, at any time we are available to do it, we will meet physically because we want it and not because we need to do it. That is why the offices will go through a reinvention stage, meant to bring the workspace into a new paradigm.

The reinvention must be at both the Landlord (owner of the building) and the Tenant (tenant). They work together as an organism, which I call workplace biology.

Last year’s projects

Our large projects take place over a period of at least 1-1.5 years, so those in the IT industry, such as Playtika or Endava and even in the banking industry, such as ING, are the most important in the last 2 years. . With large areas (between 6,000 -12,000 sqm), with numerous teams and interesting interaction strategies, there are also those that will now be able to adapt more easily to the new requirements. And that’s because informal workspaces (ie other than those at your own desk) are generous and can support various activities.

The impact of the crisis on business

March 2020 was the time when all the projects underwent a re-evaluation, but they continued with even greater force precisely because they had a free work front in the buildings that remained free during the lock-down period.

It was also the moment of some Landlords who understood the opportunity and took the opportunity to completely renovate the common areas from the reception to the bathrooms. I can say that I worked continuously, certainly more than in the previous year.

General changes

With the exception of the IT and logistics industries, there are still many areas that are waiting and reluctant to reinvent themselves. I think it’s the best time to bring new products and services.

Large real estate investors have a bolder vision and have continued large projects, adapting them as facilities and strategy for use. Small businesses in the field have the same chance, they just have to have the courage for a different approach.

The evolution of architecture and interior design

I always invite all our clients and collaborators to be intensely informed and inspired by trends, but not to mimic them. To always add to them the spirit of the place, of our culture, to reflect their personality and to create, together with us, spaces in which people feel the desire to collaborate and evolve together.

Customer requirements and behavior

Regardless of what their behavior is or was, our message remained and is #LeadNow, which is why we started on LinkedIn a campaign to communicate ideas designed to arouse the courage and initiative to rehabilitate office buildings and spaces.

What has replaced communist gray in the last 30 years?

With a lot of color, but in some cases maybe too much. In the urban environment, some multicolored renovated blocks of flats have ruined the architecture of some buildings. But again, this shows that our Latin spirit prevails. We do not have a Germanic culture where gray and black are the basic colors. The difference between us and them is, however, the quality of the materials and the workmanship that we still have to recover.

The relationship of people with the environment

The generation of millennials who will soon take over the management of the company, through their labor force, business and their way of relating, will be the engine of change for the Romanian society. The most important stake is the major investment in education and civic behavior. The history of the last year has shown that people can form communities of opinion and mutual support for any noble cause.

The future of public space

Prioritizing pedestrian areas and squares full of cafes, with local shops and green spaces are the ones that will attract interest. They will generate commercial value and make small communities prosper. When we stop allocating more pedestrian urban space and develop public transport at European level, we will be able to really see the long-term benefits.

Trends in 2021

Flexibility and multifunctionality. The rest is a story.

Thoughts you entered this year

The success of large projects, but also of small projects, convinced us that it is time to move to the next level, that of doing Project Management and execution of our projects.

It is a natural complement to some services that we already know how to deliver, but so far we have only coordinated them.

When we asked ourselves the question “who knows our project best and how should it be supported in all its implementation phases ?, the natural answer was that we are the ones. We can and want to deliver projects that not only we but also our clients will be proud of.


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