An LED waterfall, a digital lake, an indoor “mountain” and a “DreamSpace” for teaching the next generation about technology: This is what Microsoft‘s new office “One Microsoft Place” in Dublin houses.
Now officially open, the 34,000 square metre campus has cost the company $165 million and would house nearly 2,000 staff — with data scientists, AI bot builders and mixed reality game developers sitting alongside sales and marketing staff — in Leopardstown, Irishtimes reported late on Thursday.
It was officially opened by the Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, Peggy Johnson, Microsoft Executive Vice President, Cathriona Hallahan, Managing Director of Microsoft Ireland and IDA Ireland Chief Executive Martin Shanahan.
“The building is the physical manifestation of the cultural transformation we’ve been going through. It’s about pulling together the skills and talent and passion of staff to enable the mission of Microsoft,” Hallahan was quoted as saying. The campus has 3,000 seats spread across open-plan floors and smaller private areas where meetings or phone calls can be conducted.
The building bears a lot of Dublin’s influence — the digital lake and “mountain” represent the bay and hills that border the building. Each area is decorated differently, intended to reflect the 71 nationalities that are working in the Dublin office.
The “neighbourhoods” created by the different areas are intended to encourage a new way of working for Microsoft employees. There are no official offices; executives sit in the same space as interns. It also has an on-site gym — where even the weights bear Microsoft Windows logos, treatment rooms for massages, a studio where yoga classes are run alongside mindfulness sessions, a music room and a podcast room.
Microsoft does not offer free meals but subsidises the food. It has its own pizza kitchen, own coffee blend roasted on site and an in-house bakery. The rainwater collected from the roof is used throughout the building, while spices and other food items are also grown here.
“DreamSpace” is the heart of the campus, an innovation and education hub that aims to host 100,000 primary and transition year students over the next four years and the tech giant intends to open it to the public in April.