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Biel, Switzerland

When developing the new headquarters for the Swiss watch brand Swatch, the Japanese architect Shigeru Ban created a seemingly endless honeycomb grid structure made from locally sourced timber. Shigeru Ban: 'It's my most playful project so far. It's the expression of Swatch's character: playful and colourful.' The interior was also designed to clearly reflect the identity of the Swatch brand. Vitra was selected to supply the furnishings thanks to a portfolio of products with an understated aesthetic, which remain unobtrusive even when in vibrant colours – and whose proven durability matches Swatch's philosophy of sustainability: for example, the striking yellow storage cabinets by USM used at the old site were moved to the new offices. Swatch was responsible for the interior planning, creating a cascading layout that Vitra transformed into a dynamic office landscape with cafeteria, meeting rooms, boardroom, workspace, executive office, lounge and project & workshop area. The open-plan office floors with overlooking balconies create a sense of generous space and promote efficient communication – between individual employees and different teams.
  • Architecture
    Shigeru Ban Architects, Tokyo
  • Interior architecture
    Shigeru Ban Architects, Tokyo & Vitra
  • Photographer
    Eduardo Perez