Blue Back Square Business

‘Spaces’ to Move into Former REI Space in Blue Back Square

The former REI store in West Hartford's Blue Back Square will be home to co-working company Spaces later this year. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

Spaces, a creative co-working facility, will open later this year in West Hartford’s Blue Back Square.

By Ronni Newton

The Blue Back Square space that formerly stocked merchandise like kayaks and hiking boots for outdoor adventures will soon house a business that looks to attract those who may be a bit adventurous – or at least innovative – about their work environment.

Spaces, a global company founded in Amsterdam that offers flexible workspaces to suit a variety of needs, will move into the 25,733 square foot former REI location at 71 Raymond Rd. in West Hartford by the end of 2018, Blue Back Square management announced Thursday.

“We’re thrilled to welcome Spaces to Blue Back Square and the community,” said Blue Back Square General Manager Robyn Rifkin. “It’s a perfect fit that will fulfill the local growing demand for co-working space. Their model integrates lifestyle into work by offering an environment conducive to innovation, collaboration, and productivity with extra perks including networking events and activities.”

Spaces is owned by IWG, and has a worldwide operation that includes more than 3,000 flexible workplace centers in more than 110 countries. IWG, which is headquartered in Switzerland, also owns Regus, which operates a business center at 15 North Main St. in West Hartford Center.

Although they share a parent company, Spaces has a decidedly less corporate image than Regus, and is more likely to attract those who are looking for a a more hip environment with co-working opportunities to inspire innovation and inspiration.

Rifkin said that Spaces can fulfill a need for all types of businesses – entrepreneurs and small offices as well as large corporations, where employees can have “the opportunity elevate the growth of their company and facilitate new connections at a local and global level.”

The Spaces website states: “Calling the inspired ones. The corporate shakers, business nomads, freelancers, energetic entrepreneurs, international workers, mobile movers, project teams, start-ups and well-established companies.”

The creative and flexible workspace options at Spaces in Blue Back Square will range from private offices to dedicated desks to an open-area business club environment. There will also be fully-equipped meeting rooms, and members will have the ability to move between the different work areas depending on their needs.

Spaces states that its “goal is to offer inspirational surroundings with an entrepreneurial spirit where ideas are born, a company can evolve, and valuable relationships are built.”

Also included in the Spaces environment – according the company website as the best solution to beat a mental block – is really great coffee served up by expert baristas.

“West Hartford is the perfect mix for a growing startup hub including access to premiere educational institutions and skilled mentors from established organizations,” Michael Berretta, vice president of Network Development for IWG said in the announcement. “Blue Black Square was the ideal location for Spaces to mark its debut into Connecticut. It is a cultural epicenter that, just like Spaces, champions local businesses and embraces innovation.”

Spaces plans to open by late 2018. For more information about renting spaces, call 1-844-6-SPACES or visit www.spacesworks.com.

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