Eastlake Studio’s ‘Phoenix: Hunter’s Helper’ – Winners in the Flex-Work / Coworking Category

Meet the Eastlake Studio team and their winning ‘Phoenix: Hunter’s Helper’ submission in the Flex-Work / Coworking category. You can keep up with what’s next for Eastlake Studio by following them on LinkedIn or Instagram. Check out the full submission below!

Eastlake Studio

Kevin Kamien, AIA, Principal, Architect

Nicole Tabata, AIA, Director, Architect

Jake Harney, Technical Designer

Megan Stroud, Designer

Carla Schrader, Designer

Andy Naoumov, Technical Designer

We connected with the Eastlake Studio team to see how their submission has evolved since entering the competition.

“We developed several conceptual projects throughout the pandemic, examining how future workplaces could reflect our time working from home. Named for Hunter, Eastlake Studio Principal Kevin Kamien’s dog, this project dealt with the challenge of leaving our pets at home when returning to the office.

Our team continues to examine the challenges and opportunities resulting from the pandemic and the shift to hybrid work. One focus has been choice-based office design, advocating for end users to have many options as to how and where to work daily, with separate spaces for focus work, collaboration, and social time. Hunter’s Helper includes everything from customizable lighting, seating, temperature, and, of course, the choice to bring your dog to work. Flexibility and choice are essential in supporting workplace comfort.

Broadening our capabilities, we’ve recently moved into a deeper level of workplace strategy and research that can more fully shape experiences. Staff-focused comfort controls, like shown in Hunter’s Helper, can now be developed and customized for the needs of a specific company and persona groups within the company.”

Check out the slideshow and summary of the Eastlake Studio submission below:

« of 10 »

Phoenix Project was developed as four conceptual workplaces that boldly illustrate our plans for wellness, equality, flexibility, and innovation. Our entire studio contributed to Phoenix using research, planning strategies, and physical and mental wellness lessons learned throughout the pandemic.

Our goal with Phoenix is to provide inspiration for our clients on how they can translate their company goals into a future workplace. This multi-part charrette (a term meaning a collaborative solution to a design problem) is also provoking creativity by encouraging us to think outside of the box as we take on these unique challenges as a team.

This growing tech company creates software and hardware for pet parents, and promotes all aspects of staff wellness in the office, including a pro-pup policy.

Hunter’s Helper is a dog-focused software technology company dedicated to strengthening the one-of-a-kind bond between pets and their people. Their West Loop headquarters celebrates the neighborhood with open sight lines to the expansive views and natural light, and includes a product testing area, a client-facing demo space, and multiple features designed specifically for their canine coworkers. Every floor and furniture surface is made from cleanable materials, and keeping the high traffic pet areas safe and sanitary is especially important.

Founded in San Jose, California, Hunter’s Helper has been on the rise for the last few years, with growing staff numbers, and buzz-worthy products. In order to maintain their close-knit work culture, they want to remain moderate in size. The entire staff sits in free address desk areas with built-in dog nooks. They can shift easily to other work zones, or even let the on-site doggie daycare takeover for a while during focus time or important meetings. Employees are encouraged to work remotely between 20-30% of the time, creating less density in the office, and an opportunity for cat and bird owners to be home with their pets.

While developing the design concept, the Hunter’s Helper team created a chart listing the assets created to support many forms of comfort and wellness: thermal, acoustic, visual, mental, and physical, echoing the sense of well-being felt at home. Circadian rhythm lighting, air filtration, white noise solutions, and ergonomic furniture are some of the wellness assets included in the workplace. Planters, hanging greenery, and access to an exterior deck bring biophilia into the work day for humans, and give the dogs views of nature, and a park-like play environment.

By empowering individuals to make choices with their pets by their sides, the Hunter’s Helper headquarters is more than an office. It’s an enjoyable destination for animals and their people. Hunter’s Helper hopes their workplace is a place where staff can go to feel energized and motivated to create innovative tech products without leaving their canine inspiration at home. Celebrating this camaraderie, the design team created feature wall options and custom, interactive furniture to engage both dogs and humans.

Here’s what our jurors had to say about Eastlake Studio’s submission:

  • “Nailed every part of this project, especially choice and getting people back to the office. As a dog owner I would love to see this come to life. Excellent job on types of areas and how our pups can be along for the journey.”
  • “Extra cleaning is required but people will pay the fee. Coworking places that allow dogs are always sold out and the renewal rate is 2 to 1.”
  • “One of the most unique concepts.”

Special thanks to our 2022 Innovative Brand Partners:


Special thanks to our NEW 2022 Scholarship Sponsor:

Thank you to our 2022 Market Partners:

Workplace Evolutionaries (WE) • Allwork.Space • IFMA Foundation • ASID • ACT • CIDQ • BIFMA • GCUC

More from Emma Weckerling

Photos From Cosmo Couture 2017

The IIDA Mid-Atlantic Chapter’s Cosmo Couture 2017 event was held on September 28th at the...
Read More

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *