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Party Like It's 1999: Check Out Facebook's Pussy Palace

Facebook HQ Boardroom_blog_post.jpg

The newly completed Facebook headquarters in Palo Alto, California, which were designed by San Francisco firm Studio O+A, will do nothing to dispel the stereotype that Web 2.0 offices usually look like a cross between a McDonald's playground and MoMA. The Facebookers have taken over a 1960s Hewlett-Packard laboratory, but have kept some of the beakers, metal sinks, and a large orange crane the architects found abandoned in a corner of the building. "The columns in the space are all nicked up with paint that was there before," Studio O+A principal Vera Alexander says. "They wanted to push that new-old idea so it didn't feel so corporate." Studio O+A has also designed office spaces for PayPal and StubHub, but this was the first time they used Facebook to get their designs approved. "We'd Facebook them and they'd Facebook us back," Alexander says. "It felt very collaborative."

Mark Zuckerberg skateboarding through the halls should also help keep the office from feeling like the kind of place where people say "touch base" and wear too-short ties. "They specifically wanted concrete floors so they could skateboard," Alexander says. "When I was there last, there were guys with their laptops on one arm, typing while they were skating." The HP beakers and metal sinks were moved to what Alexander calls "micro kitchens," which are stocked with fruit, nuts, and every kind of candy bar, and look "like a chemistry lab," she says. The maze of cubicles from the HP days, however, were destroyed to make room for the six- or eight-person family-table workstations. This was the same setup the employees had at their old headquarters, but—in what's perhaps the greatest improvement from the old space—the Rock Band room has moved. (It used to be right across from Zuckerberg's office.) "We made it a little more private and enclosed," Alexander says.

The cafeteria:
Facebook HQ Cafeteria_blog_post.jpg

A hallway:
Facebook HQ Hallway_blog_post.jpg

The exterior:
Facebook HQ Windows_blog_post.jpg

Business as usual:
Facebook HQ Orange office_blog_post.jpg
Studio O+A
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