Hula creates opportunities through its technology-driven campus by connecting growing technology startups and entrepreneurs with a diverse coworking community. Each of the businesses that share its campus has access to the shores of Lake Champlain, a quick drive to the ski mountains, and an even shorter trip to the airport, making Hula an ideal place to work. There are open desks throughout the building with a few designated desks for those who want a more permanent space. And for growing businesses, you can even count on flexible, scalable private offices to meet your organizations’ needs.
One of the businesses that chose to expand their company into the Hula community is Guru, a creative agency on a mission to increase joy and reduce suffering by using marketing to make the world a better place. Nationally, Guru has a team of fourteen people, five of which reside in Vermont at their office in Hula--with a hub in the San Francisco Bay Area and a growing crew in Burlington. Guru was committed to building a remote workforce even before the pandemic. A commitment derived from a desire to support employees’ work-life-balance, and the understanding that a thriving Guru Crew would mean better quality work for their clients. Sometimes collaboration and creativity require in-person interaction. For this reason, Guru decided to open a collaboration space in Hula. The Hula space not only supports connectivity among Guru employees and other change-making businesses, but also helps to catalyze fresh thinking and supports their intention of building a robust client roster on both coasts.
In a meeting with Aditi Datta, Brand Manager for Guru, I asked her what her favorite aspect of Hula was and her immediate response was "the space." She had arrived with her dog Cleo, her frequent work companion, for a meeting at Brio-–the coffee bar that greets you upon entering Building 50’s North door. Following the meeting, we walked to their private office, a space with big bright windows that provide an abundance of light. She explained to me that, “having natural light changes a mood, it feels like everyone is happy here.”
I asked Aditi how they intend to make their office space unique to Guru. Her team is made up of amazing graphic designers and artists eager to decorate the walls with their own art as well as those from other talented Burlington artists. Aditi pointed around the room showing me where their collaboration table and chairs will be and how they plan to move the couch closer to the window to take advantage of the natural lighting. She even wants to get a Polaroid camera to take pictures of all their guests, for a display of who visited. Truly, their private office allows them to showcase themselves as individuals and lean into the chill vibe that Hula effortlessly provides.
In a week at Hula you can order a coffee at the Vermont-based Brio coffee bar, see other people milling around on the sleek leather couches or sitting under the looming palm trees. Providing an open office environment allows people to socialize which isn’t always the case in any normal office setting. Wednesday through Friday 5-7PM, you can grab a margarita or a draft beer at Hula Happy Hour where you’re sure to find folks intermingling and learning more about where each other works within the building. Tuesdays at noon you can join Hula cofounder, Roxanne Scully in 15 minutes of guided meditation. And, when you see others leaving at 3PM on a Friday, it encourages you to take advantage of the beautiful summer afternoon, granting a better work-life balance.
Now that many of the COVID restrictions have been lifted in Vermont, vaccinated individuals can walk through the Hula building mask-free. However, at the peak of the pandemic, masks were fully required. Aditi commented on how nice it is to see people’s faces again and feel like you can chat with others without fear, going on to say, “It’s pretty cool to see all the different companies that moved in here.” Guru is looking forward to expanding their clients in Vermont and the East Coast. Being in the mix at Hula has been instrumental in building their relationships with clients such as OVR Technology and Nalgene. "You get to learn about new businesses and create relationships that you wouldn’t otherwise have access to in un-shared office environments." Aditi explains that Guru is equally excited to bring some West Coast vibes and connections to Hula for the benefit of the whole community. The palm trees in the common space definitely help.
If you’re looking for a space to focus or start your budding business you won’t regret checking out Hula. Reserve your workspace today!