Vail Resorts reimagines office experience

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vail resorts broomfield
Rendering depicts Vail Resorts' reimagined space in Broomfield.

The corporate headquarters for Vail Resorts, the leading global mountain resort operator, is located in Broomfield, just off of U.S. 36, near the FlatIron Crossing shopping mall.

David Reed Vice president, Vail Resorts
David Reed
Vice president, Vail Resorts

In many ways, it looks like any other corporate office with elegant yet traditional design standards consisting of expansive windows, many of which face the mountains to connect the work space to the company’s product, including interior offices, conference rooms and workspace cubicles.

After ongoing growth, the company has expanded office space. The company’s Talent Acquisition, Talent Development and Employee Culture & Communications teams were given the opportunity to design a new space on the ground floor of the existing building. The parameters included about 3,400 square feet, workspace for approximately 20 employees and a $500,000 budget. Instead of applying a traditional design this time, the teams decided to take a new direction – to reimagine the space (and experience) as the company so often does for its guests.

To help guide design decisions two key goals were put at the forefront: firs, provide a workspace that enables employees to achieve the company’s mission – to create the Experience of a Lifetime, live its core values and succeed in their work; and, second, to make a first impression that is warm, welcoming and visually identifies who we are and what we do.

Working with design consultant Gillian Hallock Johnson, principal at Burkett Design, the Vail Resorts team developed a design incorporating modern, light-filled and environmentally sensitive components that achieved these goals. Specific design elements include:

  • Relatively high-density spaces that encourage collaboration balanced against the need for individual work; open space; rolling chair-height whiteboards; rolling poufs for impromptu meetings at desks; no one facing anyone else; head-height dividers to accommodate some privacy while also allowing light to flow through the space; personal lockers; and sound attenuation.
  • Natural materials and colors were used. A curved “path” flooring design was incorporated that visually guides a guest from the front door to a signature statement piece – a refurbished red gondola to incorporate the company’s mountain presence.
  • Company branding, including wall-sized graphics depicting both winter and summer mountain activities, frosted glass on office fronts that looks like mountain ranges, company core value logos and, as mentioned, a refurbished former operating gondola that acts as private space, much like a phone booth.
  • Small interview rooms in the front of the space allow the company’s interviewers to come to the candidate rather than the other way around, resulting in a comfortable “home base” for candidates, much like what an airport lounge accomplishes for travelers.
  • Small hospitality area for guest and employee refreshment.

Boots Construction was chosen as the general contractor. Throughout the design and build processes, Boots, Burkett and Vail Resorts worked very collaboratively to sift through options and solve problems, stay on budget and meet the move-in deadline. The space opened in mid-January to rave reviews from employees and visitors alike.

In the same way Vail Resorts guests have an Experience of a Lifetime, so, too, do Vail Resorts employees in this new space. \\

Dreed@vailresorts.com

Featured in the March 2017 issue of Building Dialogue

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