Zalando Innovation Lab, Berlin


Berlin, Germany
Zalando SE
Year of completion:
690 m²
Innovation Space
de Winder Architekten (Architecture & Design/Construction/Consulting/Consulting & Planning/Design/Interior Design/Workplace Design)

Design Thinktank, experimenting room and workshop in one: the Zalando Innovation Lab.

An expansive retail space in the Tech Hub was re-designed in 2015 as the Shuttle, an innovation lab, for the Berlin company Zalando. The project area functions as a design think tank and serves as a workshop and experimentation room for development of new ideas and implementation of initial prototypes by Zalando staff. It can also be used for workshops, talks or presentations.

The Shuttle is conceived as an open space that can be used flexibly, thanks to mobile furnishings. The all-white walls and open ceiling installations form a neutral frame and are completely available for every type of digital projection. The anthracite-coloured screed that merges with the window facade on the “green” level forms the antithesis of the “white room”. This tailor-made, 11-metre long seating landscape with trees and floor planting provides an opportunity for relaxation and conversation in a green environment.

Conceived as a kind of landscape relief, it also acts as a filter between public and interior space and protects from the direct gaze of passers-by. The other fixed furniture in the space is the “Toolbox”, modelled after the wire mesh containers used in production logistics. This white mesh box with neon green floor coating, made especially for the Shuttle, serves as storage for technical devices. A freestanding rear wall in the space conceals a storage room for the mobile stage and furnishings and a fully equipped prototype workshop with workspace for two people. It can also be used as a projection wall and be hidden by floor-length curtains, if necessary.

The food court directly connected to the Shuttle is available to company staff as a cafeteria and lounge. Opaque curtains can spatially separate the dining area. The spatial concept of the food court is complemented by the coffee bar on the street side, a games zone with video corner and billiard table, a lounge style sofa area and informal meeting zones. Small windows provide occasional views into the adjoining innovation lab.