LinkedIn NYC offices by IA Interior Architects include a hidden speakeasy in the Empire State Building.

LinkedIn’s Empire State Building Offices Have a Speakeasy and a Wall of Employee Pet Photos

LinkedIn’s Empire State Building Offices Have a Speakeasy and a Wall of Employee Pet Photos

The Eye
Slate’s design blog.
June 9 2015 12:32 PM

LinkedIn’s Offices in the Empire State Building Have a Hidden Speakeasy

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Just your average corporate speakeasy at LinkedIn’s New York City offices on the 28th floor of the Empire State Building.

Photo by Eric Laignel

Ever wonder what the interior of a landmark like the Empire State Building looks like?

LinkedIn, the world’s biggest online business networking service, recently conquered the 28th floor as part of its multilevel New York City office. The company hired IA Interior Architects to remodel the 33,005-square-foot space.

The designers write in a project description that the brief was to create “a fun and vibrant floor” for the company’s ever-expanding sales team.

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Photo by Eric Laignel

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Loungey work spaces at LinkedIn NY.

Photo by Eric Laignel

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“This is the top floor of LinkedIn’s several floor series in the Empire State Building and is therefore treated like the ‘club level’ of a hotel,” the designers write. Amenities include a café, screening room, fitness room, pool table, and various lounge and collaborative spaces. A LinkedIn blue millwork ribbon links these social spaces together.

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On-brand LinkedIn blue is used throughout the overall neutral space.

Photos by Eric Laignel

There’s no “Magic Forest Room” or edgy indoor street art, but the design is playful in a corporate-casual way, with a wall dedicated to portraits of employee pets and a speakeasy lounge accessed by a vestibule covered with vintage rotary phones. 

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Framed portraits of employee pets in a hallway of LinkedIn's NYC offices in the Empire State Building.

Photo by Eric Laignel

To access the speakeasy, you have to pick up and hang up one of the 133 phones to unlatch the door. “If you’re not sure which phone it is, you can call it with a number passed through the office by word of mouth,” the designers write. “The speakeasy is another example of unique lounge space for LinkedIn employees. In true speakeasy fashion, this room is not bookable, but Thursday happy hours have become a quick tradition.”

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The sort-of-secret speakeasy at LinkedIn’s offices in the Empire State Building.

Photo by Eric Laignel

Elsewhere, height-adjustable work stations are clustered together—but the layout was determined by the fact that sales team members spend a lot of time pacing while on their phones. “It was important that they not face one another like they would in a typical benching layout and also that they have paths to walk on while they are on the phone,” the designers write. They created a “meandering path” for the headset-wearing pacers with an indigo ceiling to keep them oriented.

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The designers equipped the office with height-adjustable workstations and meandering office paths to pace during roving sales calls.

Photo by Eric Laignel

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And while all of New York City is right outside the 28th-floor windows, local references are threaded into the design, like blown-up street photos and conference rooms named after lesser known streets.

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Real views and blown-up photos of NYC at the LinkedIn offices.

Photo by Eric Laignel

LinkedIn’s corporate values are plastered onto the wall in the entry, and a column allows people to write messages in acrylic Broadway-style marquee letters.

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Marquee-style acrylic letters for spelling out messages are a nod to Broadway.

Photo by Eric Laignel

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LinkedIn corporate values adorn the walls of the entry to the 28th floor.

Photo by Eric Laignel

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LinkedIn blue.

Photo by Eric Laignel

Kristin Hohenadel's writing on design has appeared in publications including the New York Times, Fast Company, Vogue, Elle Decor, Lonny, and Apartment Therapy.