The atmospheric sadness of a typical office ‘kitchen’ – and by kitchen I mean an old kettle, two rusty spoons (both missing) and three flimsy chairs around a one-person table – can be the root of much employee unrest. But when the alternatives mean either walking through the city smog or hunching over a desk with a Tupperware sandwich, dropping crumbs on the keyboard, there isn’t much choice.

In the post-pandemic workplace, however, where employee wellness demands respect and employers themselves are searching for ways to make their offices more appealing in a hybrid schedule, the age-old canteen format might just find its way back onto the menu. Here is a selection of projects that prove it can work, and how.

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