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Inside White Collar Factory by AHMM|||
Inside White Collar Factory by AHMM
17 Sep 2019

Open House 2019: Five amazing offices to visit

Words by 
Our pick of the buildings to see at Open House

Open House is the annual even that sees buildings across London open their doors for architecture enthusiasts to get a look inside. While many of the biggest and most high-profile projects, such as the Bloomberg headquarters by Foster + Partners, are open only by ballot (now all closed), there are still plenty of projects that are open to arrivals on the day. Here, we've picked out five of the workplaces you can get a look inside, from the century-old to the very new.

White Collar Factory

Allford Hall Monaghan Morris' award-winning, wellbeing-focused office is open on Saturday and Sunday and is worth a visit for anyone interested in modern office design. The building achieved both BREEAM Outstanding and LEED Platinum when it was designed in 2016 and was the result of an eight-year research project between AHMM and the developer Derwent. Visitors on Open House weekend will get to see the roof terrace, also the location of an outdoor athletics track, and the lobby, which demonstrates the generous open spaces and campus-like feel of the building. Read more about the building in our feature from 2017. Open Saturday 10am-5pm, Sunday 1pm-5pm; 1 Old Street Yard, EC1Y 8AF; nearest station Old Street

Exchange House

white collar factory ahmm old street onofficeExchange House by SOM

The glass-dominated facade of Exchange House has become a familiar site for anyone entering Liverpool Street or Moorgate on a regular basis, and the timelessness of the design belies its almost 30-year age. In 2015 it became the only UK building awarded the American Institute of Architects' 25 year award for its structural system that built a 10-storey structure over 18 railway lines, that the jury considered "unifies design and function in the mid-century Modernist tradition." See inside the building by Owings & Merrill, Skidmore all weekend. Open Saturday and Sunday 10am-5pm; Exchange House, EC2A 2BQ; nearest stations Liverpool Street or Moorgate

Huntsman shop and offices

SavileRow 20 open house 2019 onofficeThe Savile Row frontage of the Huntsman shop. Photo via Open House

Henry Flitcroft's Georgian terrace was built around 1733 and is now Grade II listed, but it was in 1919 when it became the home of Huntsman, a tailors that still occupies the site today. The building became and is still a working tailors and retail space on the ground floor and basement, with offices in the upper floors. Visitors can admire the mid-20th century shopfront as well as some of the older features, such as the mansard and first-floor parapet. Open Saturday 10am-1pm; 11 Savile Row, W1S 3PS; nearest stations Piccadilly Circus or Oxford Circus

Lloyd's Building

Lloyds building London onoffice Dmitry TonkonogThe Lloyd's building extension. Photo by Dmitry Tonkonog

Richard Rogers' extension in 2000 is an icon of high-tech architecture, with the silver lift shafts and staircases extruding from the much older Lloyd's building. The original building, designed by Thomas Collcutt in 1901, is a stark contrast with the sleek modernism of Rogers' designs and makes for an especially interesting visit. Getting a glimpse of the committee room is worth the wait, the ornate 18th century room, transferred in its original form from the former Lloyd's building, creating a sharp contrast with the space in which it now sits. Open Saturday 10am-5pm; 71 Fenchurch Street, EC3M 4BS; nearest stations Aldgate East or Liverpool Street

National Audit Office

National Audit Office headquarters London David Pearson onoffice open houseNational Audit Office headquarters. Photo by David Pearson

Another Grade II listed building, The National Audit Office was originally designed by Albert Lakeman for Imperial Airways in 1939 as a terminal that linked with Victoria station to take people to catch the flying boat at Southampton. The impressive art deco building became the home for the National Audit office in 1986, after the body acquired it from British Airways, and it was last refurbished 20 years ago to ensure the historic building is fit for use in the modern office age. Visitors will get a full view of the building's history, with tours of the tower boardroom and the basement formerly used to access the platforms of Victoria. Open Saturday and Sunday 11am-4pm; 157-197 Buckingham Palace Road, SW1W 9SP; nearest station Victoria

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