Cork is anticipated to become Ireland’s fasting growing city over the next two decades. With the opening of NSQ2 in Cork, we spoke with Jason Sleator, Commerical Area Manager at NSQ2, to discover his favourite things about the city, what Iconic Offices has to offer to the people of Cork and how NSQ2 stands out from other flexible workspaces in Cork City. Here’s what Jason had to say.
Tell us a little bit about your background
I had worked in hotels all my life until recently joining the Iconic Offices team. In my younger years I was mostly in Food & Beverage operations. Then I transitioned into Hotel Sales & Marketing during my time in London and from there I progressed into a number of General Management roles.
What brought you to Cork?
While I had spent several years visiting Cork for leisure as I always felt at home here. A career opportunity eventually led to a permanent move to the locality just over 15 years ago.
For you, what’s the most exciting thing about the city?
Cork is a vibrant city and it offers everything a larger city might. It’s an individual’s city, but still has the local friendly atmosphere and community feel of a smaller town. An eclectic choice of bars, restaurants and shops and hidden pedestrian side streets with surprises around every corner.
What attracted you to take the role of Commercial Area Manager at Iconic Offices Cork?
When I saw Iconic Offices as a successful indigenous Irish business coming to the Cork area, two things appealed to me. Firstly I saw an opportunity to work in the city centre in one of Cork’s newest grade A buildings in an up-and-coming area. Secondly, the role appealed to me as my skills and experiences are transferable to the role. It sounded exciting, and it definitely is!
What does exceptional hospitality mean to you?
Anticipating client needs and delivering a curated customer journey that meets expectations. That and detail, the devil is in the detail as the saying goes. For example, at Iconic Offices Cork we have partnered with SOMA coffee to provide a choice of selected roasts which will be used for our meetings & events, served in brass French presses.
How would you describe the NSQ2 workspace?
NSQ2 is a premium flexible workspace. The design and fit-out has been thought out to the last millimetre. It has an excellent choice of spaces to mix up your working day. It’s a unique space, with unique features such as the walk and talk booth which will have a state-of-the-art treadmill and desk combination, one of the first of its kind in Cork. Biophilic Design is also really important in the design of NSQ2, meaning we have extensive live planting throughout the space. The plants that line the ceiling throughout the corridors are watered through a custom-built automated watering system, which I think is really impressive. And we’re particularly excited about the podcast room, which will be fully kitted out with top-spec equipment, as well as being totally soundproof.
In your opinion, how does NSQ2 stand out from other flexible workspaces in Cork?
For starters, the ‘design-focused’ bias of Iconic Offices spirit shines through in the impressive fit and finish of high-end interior design concepts and choice of materials. There is nothing else like it in Cork. The floor-to-ceiling custom-built birch wood panelling has been handcrafted from start to finish. The artwork has been commissioned which makes the spaces feel unique. Every inch of the office has been accounted for. We’re bringing something new to the serviced office market right in the city centre.
Where are your favourite places to eat in Cork City?
For lunch, the Marina Market being so close to NSQ2 offers everything under one roof. My personal favourite is Oak Fire Pizza, which is one of the first NSQ2 Neighbourhood partners. I’m partial to some of the quirky concept bubble tea offerings at the Ochado stand and Poulet Vous have some to die for Korean chicken. For dinner, The Glass Curtain or Elbow Lane in the city centre are excellent, and upstairs in Arthur Maine’s for the best cocktails in town.
What is the best way to get around the city?
Cycling is the quickest, healthiest and most environmentally friendly way to get around Cork city. The cycle lane network has been evolving over the past few years so it’s a valid option now. For me, the added convenience is when you arrive at NSQ2. There is direct lift access to a locked bike storage area, where you have a wet room, lockers and showers.
NSQ2 is WELL v2 Gold targeted, can you explain what this means?
In its simplest form, it’s a wellness in the workplace accreditation. It focuses on water, air and light quality. Of course, it’s not simple to achieve, with 108 features and 10 concepts involved. There are many in-depth and specific areas of criteria that have to be met, such as minimum lumens of light at desk level, quality of drinking water, quality of air supply, soundproofing between offices and much more. We’ve worked really hard to ensure we have all of these elements in place at NSQ2.
Are there hybrid solutions available for businesses at NSQ2?
Yes, at NSQ2 we have spaces that cater for everything, from coworking day passes, to custom fit-outs in our private offices to cater for larger businesses who are maybe looking at rotation / hybrid systems in the office.
What is your personal favourite feature of the workspace?
I’d have to say the craft beer fridge!
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