Based in Guaynabo, Puerto Rico, MDR is a sports management firm serving the needs of professional baseball players. The firm represents more than 50 players, including White Sox pitcher Jose Quitana, Atlanta Braves pitcher Jaime Garcia and catcher for the St. Louis Cardinals, Yadier Molina. In 2018, MDR leased 1,807 square feet of new office space to accommodate a dynamic group of agents and marketing specialists who handle the complex business of sports management. The group set out to design a work environment with all of the creative energy of Hispanic culture and the top-tier athletes the firm represents.
Image and aesthetics are key influences in the world of sports. With that in mind, MDR
wanted to create an industrial look that pays equal attention to function and flair—as do
high-performance sports equipment and athletic apparel. Exposed structural elements reveal robust materials like raw brick and steel, while decorative components include a screen wall made up of multiple rows of baseballs and a baseball-inspired lighting canopy. By making an inventive use of shape, color and texture in architecture and furniture, the office interior captures the spirit of sports/entertainment and serves the nature of work in a highly competitive business.
Spatial constraints posed a significant challenge. Comprised of a reception area, private offices, a kitchenette and conference room, the office as a whole is narrow and the agent’s offices relatively small, requiring some modifications to standard workstations and casegoods. To make room for guest chairs in the agents’ offices, Teknion modified the length of credenzas in order to accommodate the need for private conversations and confidential negotiation.
Taking into consideration the space, the culture and the diverse activities of MDR staff, Teknion worked with the design team to select appropriate furniture and finishes. Throughout the office, light neutral colors act as an unobtrusive backdrop for artwork and other decorative elements—and avoid visual “crowding” of a narrow space. In the reception area, dramatic high-back Fractals seating stands out as a moment of vivid color that gives the space energy. In contrast, a lounge area adjacent to the president’s office is furnished with classic Vignette seating upholstered in a neutral taupe fabric that hugs the chair’s soft contours.
Expansion Casegoods and Expansion Desking, along with sleek Projek work chairs, furnish the offices and conference room. Both Expansion lines offer an extensive choice of versatile components that achieve space-efficient configurations keyed to how agents work and interact with colleagues and clients.
The president’s office has its own look and feel—achieved with a singular use of color and form. A dynamic angled leg animates the geometry of the President’s upStage desk, while an upStage storage wall pops with splashes of bright yellow color. The high-back Projek chair looks modern and professional with a seat upholstered in white and a mesh back in black. In sum, the office projects a look that celebrates the energy and aesthetics of sport.
The MDR team, along with designer Edgardo Maldonado, was impressed by the sophistication of the Teknion product, as well as the extensive choice of finishes and textiles that would allow MDR to create a fresh, contemporary aesthetic. Equally, Teknion’s commitment to sustainability and human factors accords with the values of an agency that focuses on well-being and professional growth. Finally, Teknion’s accessibility, its worldwide support network and prior experience on a successful project allowed MDR to anticipate a smooth process from specification to installation and beyond.