“It’s wonderful that the place has found new life”

“It’s wonderful that the place has found new life”

Courtney Quaintance is a familiar face at HanaHaus. As a professor of Italian Renaissance literature, she is spending the summers in her hometown Palo Alto and loves to come to HanaHaus for her daily work. We talked to her about her current projects, the reason why she is working in the heart of Silicon Valley and the difference between working in a library or a coffee shops and using HanaHaus.

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Name: Courtney Quaintance

Origin: Palo Alto, California

Working at HanaHaus since: Summer 2015

Job Title: Associate Professor

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My Job is about…
“…teaching medieval and Renaissance Italian literature and culture on the East Coast. I grew up in Barron Park in Palo Alto and left the Bay Area when I was 18 to study singing at the Cleveland Institute of Music. Then, I went to Italy to study Italian in Florence and finally did my Ph.D. at the University of Chicago. Today, I come to the Bay Area for the summers, because I am still pretty connected with Palo Alto. My mother lives in downtown.”

Got to know HanaHaus…
“… because I’ve been coming to this place since it was a movie theatre. I was very little when we used to watch movies here -
I remember the stage, the red curtains and the balconies where the second level is today. When I was in high school, I used to hang out here when it was “Borders” bookstore. My family and I were worried about what would happen to this nice building after the bookstore closed. It’s wonderful that the place has found new life and some of the architectural details were conserved. My brother is a coffee person who once ran a coffee shop in San Francisco, he was paying close attention to the arrival of Blue Bottle in downtown. By the way: He studied computer science in Stanford and was one of the first people working for eBay.”

Used to come to HanaHaus…
“…in the summers when I am not teaching. Currently, I am writing my second book which is going to be about female opera singers in Italy in the seventeenth-century. Also, I do research and read articles written by scholars about whatever I am working on. At first, I was wondering why people should pay money for sitting in a coffee shop. But after a while I learned to appreciate the fact, that you have a place what feels like it’s yours. If I am in a regular coffee shop, I always feel guilty sitting with my laptop and taking up space - here you don’t. That is genius.”

HanaHaus is unique because…
“…it’s historic. I’ve been coming to the place since I was a child, so it feels very familiar. I like being around people who are working.
I like the easy access to good coffee, the changing environment and the people’s buzz. The noise can be helpful; it feels like a treat to work in a coffee shop rather than shutting myself up in a library, which can sometimes feel like a punishment.”

The favorite spot at HanaHaus…
“…are the standing tables next to the stage.”

In 3 words HanaHaus is…
“…peaceful, buzzy and vibrant.”

In our new blog series, People of HanaHaus, we present the folks that fill our workspace cafe with life: Start-Uppers, entrepreneurs, artists, founders, innovation managers, students, unicorns, venture capital investors and the people who make HanaHaus unique. We want to learn about their journeys and what brought them to Silicon Valley. We ask them to speak about their current projects and why how they leverage HanaHaus for their business.
 

HanaHaus in Summer 2017 – The heart of Silicon Valley beats at 456, University Avenue, Palo Alto

HanaHaus in Summer 2017 – The heart of Silicon Valley beats at 456, University Avenue, Palo Alto

Since its launch in March 2015, HanaHaus has embodied Hasso Plattner’s vision of a public workspace café tailored to the community of technology innovators in Silicon Valley. Thousands of entrepreneurs, investors, students, professors, and coffee aficionados show up every day and make HanaHaus the place to be in Palo Alto, California. Judging by the status quo, one could say that this innovative concept of combining a coffee shop and a co-working space has become an efficient gateway to the world’s most exciting tech community.

A Historic Place in Downtown Palo Alto
HanaHaus is located in a unique 90-year old Mission Revival Style building on University Avenue in Palo Alto - right across from where Steve Jobs opened one of Apple’s first flagship retail stores in 2001. This is the neighborhood where many unicorn startups were born and tech giants like Mark Zuckerberg reside. Stanford University and the world-famous garage where Hewlett and Packard started their business 78 years ago are only a stone’s throw away. Originally established as a movie theatre in the 1930s, the building has always been a gathering point for the community and HanaHaus is the latest incarnation of it.

The Best Co-working Space in the San Francisco Bay Area
For two consecutive years, 2016 and 2017, San Francisco Magazine named HanaHaus the “Best Co-working-space in the San Francisco Bay Area.” This achievement is a confirmation for our concept and demonstrates our success and popularity. Up to 2000 customers walk through our doors daily for either coffee, casual meetings or conducting business. Since HanaHaus opened in March 2015, more than 17,000 entrepreneurs, startups, founders, innovation managers, venture capital investors, students, professors, researchers, and artists have used our workspaces. If you would like to learn more about them: check out the “People of HanaHaus” blog on the website and make sure to follow the social media channels (Twitter, Facebook and Instagram) for the latest update.

HanaHaus is for Coffee Lovers
According to Hasso Plattner, Co-founder and Chairman of the Supervisory Board of SAP, coffee is an integral part of the workspace concept. Today, HanaHaus is an oasis for coffee lovers thanks to Blue Bottle Coffee, one of the rising stars in the food and beverage industry. It is famous for high quality products and organic ingredients. They offer delicious types of traditional coffee, cool drinks, amazing salads, and sandwiches. The latest highlight is the outdoor bar in the courtyard, which offers special coffee cocktails. And the best part? Blue Bottle Coffee also teaches you how to brew coffee, during weekly brew classes.

Event Location for the Technology Community in the Valley
HanaHaus is not only a coffee shop and co-working space, but also a spacious location for events. We host frequent speaker sessions, workshops and networking events focused on technology and science for the community. On the first Monday of each month, we bring the mission of Design Thinking in a casual meetup open to everyone during lunchtime. The third Thursday of each month is reserved for Café Scientifique - a speaker series event with lectures on the latest science topics presented by renowned researchers. Additionally, HanaHaus can be reserved by companies and organizations who want to host science and technology events.

Enhancing the Original Vision Every Day
After more than two years, HanaHaus has grown to be an important part of the business for thousands of people in Silicon Valley. Hasso Plattner’s vision has become reality and the HanaHaus team drives it forward together with our community, one day at a time.

“Young, exciting, different.”

“Young, exciting, different.”

Corey Lenko is the head of the Blue Bottle café at HanaHaus and the guarantor for the deliciousness of our coffee. As the manager, he keeps an eye on everything going on behind Blue Bottle’s counter and in the kitchen. His journey to Silicon Valley started more than 2,800 miles away from here on the East Coast. Read our new “People of HanaHaus”-blog to learn about his great experience in gastronomy and the reason why he moved to California.

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Name: Corey Lenko

Age: 26

Origin: Pennsylvania, Scranton

Working at HanaHaus since: August 2016

Job Title: Cafe Leader of Blue Bottle Coffee Palo Alto & Instagram

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My Job at HanaHaus is about…
“…making sure there are no fires (laughing). I am in charge of a staff of about 29 people. My job is about insuring we open and close every day at the right time, scheduling shifts and meetings of my team. My task it to manage the café based on Blue Bottle’s three values: hospitality, sustainability and deliciousness.”

Got to know HanaHaus…
“…when I was hired by Blue Bottle in August 2016. My onboarding process was in New York over the phone, so I did not know anything about downtown Palo Alto. I knew it was a co-working space, but I’d never heard about the concept of HanaHaus before.”

 Before working at HanaHaus…
“…I lived in New York City and was working for Union Square Hospitality Group for almost 4 years. I was hopping around different restaurants like North End Grill or Gramarcy Tavern. I grew up in Pennsylvania and went to school in upstate New York. I did my Bachelor’s degree in Culinary Management at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park. The first few years where very strict, you learn how to hold a knife and make something taste good. But I also had business classes. After graduating, I literately started off from the bottom: I was a back server, frontline server, sommelier and finally floor manager.”

My journey to Silicon Valley started…
“…when Blue Bottle hired me in August 2016. I had New York City life for so long and I always wanted to live in California. What finally sealed the deal was a vacation with my girlfriend and her family in Chester in upstate California. I fell in love with the atmosphere and the nature here. Its super easy to get lost in the woods and to go to the beach as well. It’s just a beautiful state. The reason why I live in Silicon Valley is Blue Bottle.”

"It's exciting for a café to work with a co-working space like that."

Like working at HanaHaus…
“…is exciting because you see a lot of interesting people working here. Also, I like the fact that you get almost the same people day by day. Of course, we have a lot of first time visitors but the majority shows up regularly. It’s nice that our team gets to know our guests and talks casually with them.”

HanaHaus is unique because…
“…it’s exciting for a café to work with a co-working space like that. It’s a very beautiful and unique place.”

The favorite spot at HanaHaus…
“…is the Capetown Lounges with its exposed windows and beautiful arches. It is a very creative, relaxing atmosphere over there. Also I like the courtyard with our cocktail corner, it drops a lot of people in our space.”

In 3 words HanaHaus is…
“…young, exciting, different.“

In our new blog series, People of HanaHaus, we present the folks that fill our workspace cafe with life: Start-Uppers, entrepreneurs, artists, founders, innovation managers, students, unicorns, venture capital investors are the people who make HanaHaus unique. We want to learn about their journeys and what brought them to Silicon Valley. We ask them to speak about their current projects and why how they leverage HanaHaus for their business.

“HanaHaus is a hotspot in Palo Alto”

“HanaHaus is a hotspot in Palo Alto”

What would HanaHaus look like without our amazing ambassadors? Mariana Pinheiro is one of them – her task is to make the workspace to a pleasant place for our guests. Behind her friendly and good-humored character is an amazing story. Read how Mariana got from a small town in Brazil to the heart of Silicon Valley in our new “People of HanaHaus”- blog.

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Name: Mariana Pinheiro

Age: 32

Origin: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Working at HanaHaus since: March, 2017

Job Title: Ambassador

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My Job at HanaHaus is about…
“…giving our guests a pleasant experience while they are here. We give them information about our concept, our workspace and help them with their stay issues. After checking-in, we monitor how long their reservation is and when it expires. Basically, we are keeping an eye on everything happening in our workspace.”

Got to know HanaHaus…
“…. after I received a work permission in the U.S. and was looking for a job. I’d known the building before because I used to walk around downtown. It attracted me because it reminds me on the architecture I’ve seen in Europe. Working at HanaHaus as an ambassador sounded like the best fit for me because I have experience with customer service. For me, HanaHaus is a hotspot in Palo Alto - the best place in downtown!”

Before working at HanaHaus…
“…I used to work as an operations manager at my family’s bed & breakfast in Brazil. I was born in Rio de Janeiro. When I was seven years old, we moved to Tiradentes, Minas Gerais where my family runs a farm. It has cows, horses, ducks, chickens and a bed & breakfast as well. I was gone for a while for taking Italian classes in Torino, it was a great experience!”

My journey to Silicon Valley started…
“…when I met my husband. He was born in Palo Alto and moved to Brazil to work at a bilingual school in Rio de Janeiro. He was hired by my father, who is also an English teacher running classes for the community in our town. So, we worked together and became a couple. He’s been telling me about the beauty of California and the amazing opportunities here since we met. We moved to Palo Alto after our wedding in Brazil a year ago. After getting my work permission in January 2017, I applied at HanaHaus and started in March.”

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"We are keeping an eye on everything happening in our workspace.”

HanaHaus is unique because…
“…of its location. The fact being in Palo Alto, being surrounded by many tech companies and startups makes it special. It’s exciting to see the people inventing our future. Also, I appreciate the affiliation with Blue Bottle. The special coffee makes HanaHaus even fancier.”

The best experience at HanaHaus…
“…is meeting customers with a Portuguese accent. Realizing people are from Portugal or Brazil is exciting. I love to communicate with them in my native language and describe them the workspace in Portuguese.”

The favorite spot at HanaHaus…
“….is the Captetown lounge. It’s comfortable and quiet.”

In 3 words HanaHaus is…
“…high-tech, stylish and modern.”

In our new blog series, People of HanaHaus, we present the folks that fill our workspace cafe with life: Start-Uppers, entrepreneurs, artists, founders, innovation managers, students, unicorns, venture capital investors are the people who make HanaHaus unique. We want to learn about their journeys and what brought them to Silicon Valley. We ask them to speak about their current projects and why how they leverage HanaHaus for their business.

“It’s nice to sit down at a place that feels like it is meant for productivity”

“It’s nice to sit down at a place that feels like it is meant for productivity”

Avery Bedows is probably one of the youngest entrepreneurs working at HanaHaus. Originally from Chicago, he co-founded his own Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality business last year and is running it as the CEO. In our new “People of HanaHaus”- Blog, Avery is talking about the advantages of being in the Bay Area as a VR and AR startup and the variety of tasks he manages as its head.

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Name: Avery Bedows

Age: 20

Origin: Chicago, Illinois  

HanaHaus Visitor since: Late June 2016

Job Title: Co-Founder and CEO

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My Job in Silicon Valley is about…
“…running Altar as a CEO. My job is to define the company’s goals and find ways to achieve them. We, as a company of four, are working to augment human intelligence using Virtual and Augmented Reality. I do some engineering work, help our research team with their studies, and seek inspiration for our products by reading research papers. I also give a bunch of demos and handle the administrative work. As a startup CEO, you are involved in everything.”

Got to know HanaHaus…
“…through Blue Bottle Coffee. I had my first one in San Francisco a few years ago and it rocked my world! I was even more excited about HanaHaus after realizing I could not only come for coffee, tea or snacks but also for work.”

Used to come to HanaHaus…
“…because we don’t have a dedicated office yet. So, I work either in my apartment or more recently at HanaHaus. I work here on a variety of things like coding, researching, reading papers, meetings…the many things you do as a CEO.”

My journey to Silicon Valley started when…
“…a friend and I came up with the idea of creating whiteboards in 3D while at dinner in January 2016. At that time, I went to Pomona College down near Los Angeles, and I couldn’t stop thinking about fusing the ideas of collaboration and productivity into a tool using VR. I incorporated the business in April 2016 and we really got cracking last September. I decided to move to Silicon Valley because most of the knowledge in the U.S about VR and AR is focused here. If I started it somewhere else, it would be very difficult because the number of people familiar with those topics is far lower. As a startup, we’re trying to get good feedback and talk with potential customers or investors. That’s tough when no one knows about the technology we are working with. So, there is a lot of value in being around people who know about the market we’re in.”

"As a startup CEO, you are involved in everything.”

 

HanaHaus is unique because…
“…it has the vibe of an office. It’s nice to sit down at a place that feels like it is meant for productivity. The colors are very bright and airy, the ceiling is high, you see people hanging around with their computers or being in conversation. I like the rotatable and comfortable chairs and nice clean desks where I can spread out a little bit. These things make me more productive. HanaHaus is somehow transient but it also feels like an office space. It’s transient in that people book rooms for hours and not for months. That’s why you can sit down and feel like you’re working in your own space.”

The best experience at HanaHaus was...
“…when I had the pleasure of giving Daniel and Luca from the HanaHaus Team a demo of our software ‘Altar Show’, a VR collaboration tool for brainstorming and organization which leverages 3D space to improve human memory. I showed them how to use it in one of the HanaHaus lounges.”

The favorite spot at HanaHaus…
“...one of the tables on the wooden platform in the center.”

In 3 words HanaHaus is…
“…. transient, rooted and comfortable”

In our new blog series, People of HanaHaus, we present the folks that fill our workspace cafe with life: Start-Uppers, entrepreneurs, artists, founders, innovation managers, students, unicorns, venture capital investors and the people who make HanaHaus unique. We want to learn about their journeys and what brought them to Silicon Valley. We ask them to speak about their current projects and why how they leverage HanaHaus for their business.

“HanaHaus is a great resource for Silicon Valley”

“HanaHaus is a great resource for Silicon Valley”

Dave Torrey has been living in the Bay Area for more than 40 years and had the pleasure to experience the HanaHaus space since it was a movie theatre. As an independent consultant, he collaborates with startups and entrepreneurs and helps them to grow their businesses. Read in our brand-new “People of HanaHaus”-Blog what makes him to come over to the heart of Silicon Valley.

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Name: Dave Torrey

Age: 65

Origin: Portland, Oregon

Hanahaus Visitor since: Spring 2016

Job Title: Marketing & Strategy Consultant


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My Job in Silicon Valley is about…
“…working with individuals and especially entrepreneurs to help them figure out strategies for their businesses. I also help them with marketing strategy and with fundraising. I’ve been an independent consultant and coach for about 25 years. Also, I am doing nonprofit work. I just finished a nonprofit project for the Stanford d.school. It was for an exciting new venture called 'Project Wayfinder' which helps high school students find a greater sense of meaning and purpose in their lives.”

Got to know HanaHaus …
“...because I’ve been coming here since it was a movie theatre and then a bookstore. I’ve known about it for a long time. I watched movies here in the 1970’s and 1980’s. It was a beautiful place and I am glad that you kept the marquee! When it was a bookstore, I used to bring my kids to shop for books and attend Harry Potter book launch parties. I was curious when I saw it was being converted to a new place.” 

Why I come to HanaHaus…
“…to meet colleagues or to have discussions. Other times I am just working on my projects individually and I like hanging around all the interesting people working here. Also, I like the staff - both the people that work for HanaHaus and BlueBottle. They are fun and interesting people!”  

My journey to Silicon Valley started when…
“…I moved from Oregon to Redwood City with my family when I was 4 years old. It was of course not ‘Silicon Valley’ back then. I grew up here in the 50s and 60s when the valley was more about agriculture than technology. In the summers, I worked in a can factory which provided cans to the agricultural industry. After I graduated from college at U.C. Davis, I was gone for a while for working in Washington D.C. In 1977, I came back to Palo Alto to study at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. Then I worked for a management consulting company, the Boston Consulting Group. After that, I was an executive in a couple of high tech companies, including one which went from a small start-up to a successful public company. I eventually started my own consulting practice working primarily with high-tech start-ups.”

HanaHaus is unique because…
“…its space. The design and the history of this space makes it very interesting. Especially if you were there before it was converted. Also, I like the variety of people here. I like being around them, especially when they are being creative and innovative. They are full of energy, working to inventing the future. When I am talking to them you can feel the energy, which I like. In my view, HanaHaus is a great resource for Silicon Valley.”

The best experience at HanaHaus was...
“…starting to go to the events in the evenings. I went to the Pico Iyer’s talk about the 'Value of Travel', which was great.”

The favorite spot at HanaHaus…
“…are the standup tables. They say that sitting is the new smoking. It’s not good to sit all day!”

In 3 words HanaHaus is...
“…creativity, buzz, energy”.

In our new blog series, People of HanaHaus, we present the folks that fill our workspace cafe with life: Start-Uppers, entrepreneurs, artists, founders, innovation managers, students, unicorns, venture capital investors and the people who make HanaHaus unique. We want to learn about their journeys and what brought them to Silicon Valley. We ask them to speak about their current projects and why how they leverage HanaHaus for their business.

“I like the buzzing atmosphere here”

“I like the buzzing atmosphere here”

Julia Guenster was transferred to Silicon Valley last year to establish HR Innovation & Digitization for a German Freight Forwarder. She enjoys the atmosphere at HanaHaus and uses the workspace for meetings and workshops. Read in our blog what Julia’s journey to Silicon Valley looked like and why she believes that HanaHaus is a great spot for meetings.   

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Name: Julia Guenster

Age: 30

Origin: Essen, Germany

HanaHaus Visitor since: Summer 2016

Job Title: Director HR Innovation & Digitization

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My Job in Silicon Valley is about…
“…scouting trends, screening ideas and building up networks with start-ups, academic institutions and our customers to generate and catalyze transformation. I am working for a German Freight Forwarder called DB Schenker, which has a long history of more than 130 years, so we are looking to learn from the most innovative companies and start-ups on the planet – concentrated here in the Bay Area. We have a big number of customers in the tech industry and part of my job is to build up learning and development collaborations or best practice exchanges with them. Also, I am scouting start-ups who offer solutions that are related to Human Capital Management. Additionally, I am collaborating with universities such as Stanford, UC Berkeley or the California College of the Arts.”

Got to know HanaHaus through…
“…researching co-working spaces in Silicon Valley. HanaHaus convinced me with its ideal location in the Valley and the flexible scheduling model.”

Used to come to HanaHaus because…
“…of different reasons. First, I use it as a meeting space. When I meet with colleagues from our German headquarters, external vendors or start-ups, I usually meet them here in one of the meeting rooms. Also, I like to come here when I am in transit between meetings in Silicon Valley and San Francisco to work on my mails or an upcoming presentations. Additionally, I use the meeting rooms in HanaHaus for workshops. Once we facilitated a design thinking workshop with MBA students, who we were collaborating with us on a use-case.”

My journey to Silicon Valley started…
"
…when I got in touch with DB Schenker during my Master studies in sports management at University of Bayreuth, Germany. I did an internship in venue logistics with DB Schenker at the Olympic Games 2008 in Beijing and worked at the Soccer World Cup in South Africa in 2010. I moved on to work as a project manager in Global Air Freight at our headquarters in Germany and implemented warehouse management solutions globally. Afterwards I assisted our Board Member for Air & Ocean Freight as chief of staff and came to the Bay Area to work as an account manager for one of our major tech accounts. In November, I took over responsibility for DB Schenker’s HR innovation space.”

HanaHaus is unique because…
“… of its flexibility. I never had an issue booking a meeting room at the time I needed. There are a lot of options you can choose from: You can get private and open work spaces for meetings with two or more people. And when I am on my own, I can always come in and there is a spot available. Also, I like the atmosphere a lot. It’s buzzing so it’s not quite like a library. At the same time, it’s a working atmosphere and you can focus on what you are doing. I think the quietness of a library can sometimes be kind of disturbing. I really like the buzzing atmosphere here.”

The best experience at HanaHaus was...
"…the design thinking workshop that I think we couldn’t have done somewhere else so easily. We didn’t do it in our DB Schenker office as we wanted to have it in a creative environment, not the typical office environment. Conducting it here with a group of 4 other design thinkers worked really well, because you have everything you need - the white boards, moving walls, screens and markers. It’s a great place for a workshop or a creative meeting.”

The favorite spot at Hanahaus…
“…is in front of the Capetown Lounge where you have a great overview of the whole situation.”

In 3 words HanaHaus in 3 is...
“…bright, flexible and inspiring.”

In our new blog series, People of HanaHaus, we present the folks that fill our workspace cafe with life: Start-Uppers, entrepreneurs, artists, founders, innovation managers, students, unicorns, venture capital investors and the people who make HanaHaus unique. We want to learn about their journeys and what brought them to Silicon Valley. We ask them to speak about their current projects and why how they leverage HanaHaus for their business.