As you probably know, I love to be at the cutting edge of all that is new and edgy in interiors, so when I got the chance to visit the USA to see the ‘healthy home revolution’ Delos is spearheading, I couldn’t contain my excitement!
I was already familiar with Delos’ DARWIN Home Wellness Intelligence platform, which I helped launch into Simonds Homes last year. Delos is the pioneer of wellness real estate and DARWIN Home Wellness Intelligence is a culmination of all the research they’ve done in healthy indoor environments so far.
But like time, wellness pioneering moves fast, so there was no shortage of fresh innovations for me to examine, explore, and research at Delos’ New York headquarters.
The New York office exemplifies Delos’ research and development. Delos is the founder of the WELL Building Standard, delivered by the International WELL Building Institute, and the wellness elements of the office are evident the minute you step inside. Walking through the building with the project manager I could instantly see, hear and feel why the space is leading the way in healthy environments.
One of the first things you notice about the space when you walk into it is the light. Firstly, the building is flooded with natural light that streams in from three full walls of windows that give a view to the beauty of the Hudson river, and the New York city skyline. There’s not a fluro light to be seen and, although I was there in the middle of the day and wasn’t able to witness the day-to-night lighting transition, the entire office is furnished with LED circadian lighting that adjusts to the rhythms of natural light. That means staff working early enjoy a soft, gentle, light to ease them into the working day. At the height of the day the light is white/blue and energising (even in the depths of winter). And, as day transitions into night, the lighting moves into evening mode, helping employees to wind down when it comes time to pack up for the day.
Delos planned carefully with acoustics in mind during design and construction, which meant selecting flooring and ceiling materials to absorb sound, and positioning ventilation systems that zone people away from sources of noise pollution.
Walking and talking our way through a working office, you’d expect there to be considerable ambient noise, but what was really noticeable was that although Delos’ 75-plus strong team was hard at work, there was none of the usual background chatter and keyboard tapping that you associate with a busy open plan workspace. Pretty amazing considering their proximity to the adjacent Highline, and all the traffic noise and hubbub of the Big Apple.
I’m super-aware of acoustics these days because I’m so tired of visiting workplaces and restaurants where I can’t hear myself think. By contrast, the acoustical ceiling treatments on the exposed concrete, felted modular panels and perforated wall panels melding seamlessly with the interior design, and the clever use of sound-masking with low-level white noise that sits at the same pitch as the human voice, made Delos an incredibly calming and soothing environment (without being overt).
Read part 2 of my tour of Delos’ HQ where I check out the acoustics in the space, and the ways in which Delos has tailored their workplace to foster community spirit.
Find Delos online