June 12, 2019 5:36 pm

Modern co-working space targeting creatives opens in Kelowna

WATCH ABOVE: Community reporter Shay Galor tours a new co-working office in Kelowna called blackbean.house to find out the benefits of co-share.

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In the last decade, co-working spaces have cropped up all over the world, changing the way small businesses look at what they actually need these days to operate.

Now, a new space in Kelowna is making co-sharing even more appealing.

With its modern décor and cool gadgets, blackbean.house is located in the trendy south Pandosy neighbourhood at SOPA Square.

“I wanted to build a space where creatives could come and work together and collaborate, because I feel a lot of the downtown area is very focused on tech,” said owner and creative director Laura Norup-Boyer.

“There isn’t much for writers, photographers, bloggers, artists, so I wanted to provide a hub.”

The new digs sport high loft-like ceilings and eclectic décor, all designed by Norup-Boyer herself.

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“I think I pulled from my background as a graphic designer in terms of colours and I’ve traveled and lived all over the world,” Norup-Boyer said. “So I was taking from those experiences.”

The space has open concept work-stations available for rent, daily or monthly

There is also an impressive conference room, equipped with all the latest gadgets, like an airplay-compatible, wall-mounted 4K television.

“I find sometimes that to act the part, you need to look the part, and that’s a good way of doing it for client presentations,” Norup-Boyer said.

From having a smaller environmental footprint to saving costs, there are many benefits to sharing office space.

“If you’re starting out or if you’re a smaller company, investing in renting a whole office can weigh heavily on your budget,” Norup-Boyer said.

“So being able to share and rent one or two desks makes it a lot more manageable in the long term.”

Costs such as electricity and hydro are also included in the daily or monthly fee.

“The Wi-Fi, the printing, scanning, copying. There’s wine in the fridge,” Norup-Boyer said. “The only thing that’s not included is monthly parking.”

There are still some updates to be completed at the office space, including an acoustical wall panel solution to dampen sound and an office phone booth for private conversations.

Another bonus that comes with renting a desk – noise canceling headphones.

READ MORE: Job-hopping and standing desks: Millennials shaping modern work environments

Karla Reid is a wedding and pet photographer who owns Karla Rosalin Photography.

She’s been co-sharing space in the Okanagan for about five years and recently relocated to blackbean.house.

“To get out of the house and actually have a 9-to-5 schedule,” Reid said. “It kind of forces me into that.”

Reid said renting a space of her own was never an option, and that co-sharing gives her the ability to have a professional work environment at an affordable cost.

“You’re making relationships and connections with businesses that you normally wouldn’t have and also collaborating with your connections, so it’s like a web from there,” Reid said.

blackbean.house offers daily or monthly rates for desks and the conference room ranging from $40 a day to $475 a month.

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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