Houzz Australia: The Workspace With Its Own Office Dog

Houzz Australia is a home renovation and design-based website that specialises in connecting customers with architects, designers and contractors. The platform includes interior and exterior home photos, product reviews and guides written by renovation experts. We recently visited the company's new Sydney digs which were carefully constructed to evoke feelings of homeyness; complete with BBQs, kid's paintings and even an office dog! Here are the photos.

Houzz was founded in 2009 in Palo Alto, California. It started out as an online photo database for people in the process of building, remodeling and decorating their homes and has since grown into a global platform catering to all areas of interior and exterior design. The Australian offshoot recently built a new office in Surry Hills. Its previous head quarters was a service office based in Waterloo.

The foyer gives a good indication of the Houzz ethos: it includes a mock fireplace and mounted photos of employees and their families.

Many of Houzz's local staff members are designers and artists themselves: chalkboard doodlings and stylised logos dot the workplace.

These rubber duckies can be found all over the office: they're the unofficial mascot of Houzz.

Meeting room or beach house? In place of bland office styling, Houzz's rooms have been designed to feel warm and homey. Each theme was designed and laid out by staff members which reportedly helped with team building.

Houzz's Sydney boardroom has a workshop/man cave type feel. The tools on the wall were actually used to help put the room together. The table in the foreground was homemade.

This room resembles a child's bedroom, complete with a kid's bed and an undersized table. (Presumably, this is where Houzz's immature staffers congregate.)

The "kid's room" includes self-portraits of Houzz staff members -- not entirely sure if the kiddy style is intentional.

The main office area where most of the work gets done. The ground is carpeted to reduce sound reverberations: important when you spend a lot of the day talking to clients on the phone.

Employees have the option of using standing desks; a must in any modern workplace.

Office shindigs are chronicled on the celebrations column, which acts like a physical Instagram.

The office interior is dotted with an impressive amount of greenery.

We're going to guess that the Houzz Australia team are keen wine drinkers. Just a hunch.

The outside patio commands a relaxing view (with plenty of tables to soak it up on). Every Wednesday night, staff enjoy a yoga class out here.

It wouldn't be an Aussie home without a BBQ!

Houzz has several keen gardeners on its payroll -- many of the plants and herbs that line the balcony are edible. When the Zombie Apocalypse begins, this wouldn't be a bad place to be.

The patio is dominated by decorative chess pieces. Clearly, some of those tiles need to be filled in with black paint.

Say hello to the office dog! A year ago, one of Houzz's staffers mentioned that his dog suffered from loneliness while he was at work. The manager invited him to bring the dog into the office and she has been a mainstay ever since. This obviously fits in perfectly with Houzz's design principle of a home-style office.

Thankfully, the dog is pretty well house trained -- when it's time to go potty, she lets her human colleagues know. The only issue are the rubber duck mascots, which she loves chomping on.

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    As usual, only in Sydney do I tend to find such innovation in the workplace.

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