Kendall Square Café 1

Gathering to eat is at the heart of this global technology company’s culture, and food is what connects coworkers across the teams and buildings that make up the campus. Designed in collaboration with Parts and Labor Design, Kendall Square Café 1 is one of many dining facilities within a broader network of food service spaces designed specifically to build connections and provide employees with a variety of healthy dining options.

With expansive views of Boston’s iconic brick cityscape and the Charles River, the café draws inspiration from this historic language; whimsical tiles, knotted ropework, brass details, warm millwork, and deep colorful accents and textures all come together to create a distinctly New England experience.

The café offers employees a variety of locally inspired, chef-curated dishes aimed at showcasing the company’s commitment to sustainable operations while educating employees about healthy eating practices. Scattered across the floor, the serveries help divide the open seating into a variety of zones where employees and visitors can enjoy a meal at the counter and watch as chefs prepare the pre-plated dishes, have lunch as a small group, or meet in large teams to extend the café’s use as additional collaboration space throughout the day. A back of house kitchen supports day-to-day operations and is sized to accommodate catering preparations to support the building’s two event floors.

As part of the commitment to promote healthy lifestyles, the café includes an eight-station residential teaching kitchen where employees can learn from local chefs, enjoy new culinary experiences, and dine on the fruits of their labor while connecting with their team members at an adjacent community table. Located just outside this teaching kitchen, a sweeping social stair negotiates the café’s key placement on campus, connecting four floors across two different buildings while serving as a flexible gathering space for breakout meetings, events, or large scale performances.

Photos courtesy of © Google. Photography by Chuck Choi.

Michael Talbot, Hero Within, 2022. Digital mural printed on vinyl. 27’ 6” x 24’. © Michael Talbot.