Earlier this week we learned from Tim Giles, CEO of London Executive Offices (LEO) on what it takes to run a fleet of five-star serviced offices in London. The company has certainly made its presence known in the market; with 31 (soon to be 32) of “London’s finest” serviced offices, it’s clear that LEO knows how to deliver a five-star product.
They also know how to throw a launch party.
Thursday 4th February saw the official launch of the latest addition to their City portfolio, Octagon Point St Paul’s, which treated scores of guests to an early preview of the freshly re-designed space. Serviced office brokers, commercial property agents, investors, special guests, a lot of LEO staff, even more catering staff, and yours truly were in attendance.
It’s a real case of ‘location, location, location’. Emerging from St Paul’s tube station, you can’t miss the solitary octagonal building looming behind you. LEO acquired the property in 2015 on a 15-year lease and got to work fitting out 40,126 sq ft of space over 7 floors. Although I can’t comment on the exterior given the lack of daylight, the interiors are certainly impressive; understated yet elegant.
LEO’s ability to acquire the entire building (which I’m told is one of their key priorities when seeking out new locations) means that everything – from the ground up – is controlled by LEO and branded as such. But rather than adorning the walls with their own name, LEO opted for the more subtle approach of the building name – ‘Octagon Point St Paul’s’ – which they had chosen themselves upon acquisition (the one downside of the new name is that Google Maps hasn’t quite caught up with the amendment).
During a tour, the office space was described as “cookie cutter” in terms of the repetition of style and ergonomic furniture, which – aside from a smattering of wall art and colourful blooms – is effectively a blank canvas, ready for clients to personalise the space as they see fit. However, the shape of each room is quite unique. Given the building’s octagonal shape, it’s easy to assume that the most straightforward approach is to recreate a series of wedge-shaped rooms around the building. But LEO decided against that approach in favour of greater diversity of office space and the ability to introduce variable size and configuration of office suites and meeting rooms.
One of the standout benefits of that unusual shape is that every office suite and meeting room is exterior, and each has floor-to-ceiling windows with superb views of The City – some peering along the bright lights of Cheapside with the soaring Shard piercing the skyline, while others have views over iconic St Paul’s Cathedral itself. The fourth floor has been left open-plan for larger requirements or bespoke spaces, while the fifth floor serves as a business lounge and event space, which included a cocktail bar for the launch evening (although, unlike the pool tables and beer kegs that have become the norm in some workspace circles, I’m told the cocktail bar is safely packed away during the working week).
After a quick word with Tim Giles, it’s clear that LEO are pleased with the result of the building and – while names and locations are still firmly under wrap – the company fully intends to continue expanding their portfolio across the capital.
Tim added: “We offer the very best luxury five-star serviced offices in prime central London and we’re delighted to have launched such an iconic building. It’s an excellent addition to our portfolio and really complements our other centres by offering our customers a choice of style and location within the City core. The views over St Paul’s have to be seen to be believed.”
All things considered, Octagon Point is a signature property that’s every inch the luxury article.