NetApp, Sunnyvale


Sunnyvale, USA
Year of completion:
3,542 m²
Studio O + A (Interior Design)

Customer-first hospitality spaces as a vehicle for narrative

Room by Room, Chapter by Chapter

Every O+A design begins with a story, but NetApp’s space is unique for the linear way it lays out the narrative, inviting visitors to move sequentially through NetApp’s culture in spaces curated for continuity and connection. The result is museum-like, but warmer. This is an Experience Center that truly offers experience, leading NetApp’s guests through interactive exhibits and functioning workstations.

Bigger Than a Welcome

One of the design’s most striking features is the circular cloud that greets new arrivals in the lobby. This enclosure, echoing classic performance structure that dates back to the ancient Greeks, is clad in LED panels on which images and data may be projected. Inside customer stories unfold on digital screens that surround the viewer in a fully immersive experience. But it’s a feature of NetApp’s customer-friendly design that the techmagic here is flanked by practical nomad’s-restfeatures—a place to stash luggage for guests coming directly from the airport, a café in which to grab a quick breakfast before touring the center.

Please Touch the Technology

Most of us learn to use new technology by plunging in. O+A designed Net App’s Experience Center to welcome this hands-on approach. Product demonstration kiosks allow users to drive their own data management trials—at their own pace and according to their priorities. This Experience Center makes use of VR technology to a far greater extent than O+A has ever before attempted. VR pods invite guests to experience state-of-the-art visualizations, but in comfort andwithout the futuristic trappings of sci-fi. NetAppwanted these spaces to demonstrate technology in its warmest light, in effect to send the message: If NetApp is embracing this industry, so may we all.

Behind the Scenes

O+A adopted NetApp’s ethic of being an essential behind-the-scenes partner as a design theme. The tech dazzle on display in the Center’s featured spaces is augmented by comfort zones more suited to quiet contemplation or solitary work. These spaces draw on O+A’s traditional “Living Room,” “Library,” and “Town Hall” typologies to create comfortable and aesthetically pleasing support adjacencies to the showcaseareas NetApp’s guests will see first. For O+A’sdesigners a personal goal was to make “behind the scenes” as memorable as “center stage.”



“I think being clear about the need for change and painting a compelling vision of where you’re going gets people in the boat.” - George Kurian, NetApp CEO