Just Listed Logo

Blog

Just Listed

PwC Plaza: A Minneapolis modern office with a focus on collaboration

One peek into PwC Plaza and you would swear you walked into a creative agency, not a professional services firm.

PricewaterhouseCoopers’ new downtown Minneapolis offices at 45 S. 7th Street (formerly Plaza Seven Tower) are four and a half levels of glistening floors and panoramic views.

There are cornhole boards and a small golf green where you can practice your putts on one of the outdoor decks. There’s custom artwork on every floor and an interactive light installation that looks like an oversized Lite Brite.

“People will want to work here,” said Tom Montminy, PwC’s Minneapolis managing partner, who has called the offices a new recruiting and retention tool that is especially appealing for young workers.

 

Staff moved into the offices on floors 33 to 36 and part of 28 in July after the company signed a 12 ½-year lease. The 66,000 square feet of space is about 6,000 square feet larger than the firm's former home at Capella Tower. The older offices were more traditional with wood paneling and a more corporate feel.

The new space is bright and offers a lot of collaborative space whether it’s in the 14 conference rooms or the other less formal meeting areas. Workers mostly don’t have assigned desks instead moving around to different floors and desks, a concept called “hoteling,” which company leaders said promotes collaboration between the approximately 700 employees.  

“As a firm, our purpose is to build trust and solve important problems,” Montminy said. “You do that through teamwork. So we created an environment that focuses on teamwork.”

PwC Minneapolis also upgraded a lot of its technological capabilities with kiosks where you can reserve meeting spaces or find where people are seated and the capability to use a phone to swipe to print something or connect to any of the large television screens that are stationed in the conference rooms.

There are two decks which offer stunning views of the surrounding area including Target Field and beyond. Other perks include a video gaming station, food cafes and lockers on every floor and a large training space that can fit 150 people. PwC used to have to rent space in Capella’s business center if it needed something that big. There are also places to maintain privacy such as lactation rooms for mothers, serenity room for those who may want some peace and quiet, and call rooms.

The office has local flair with walls wrapped in pictures of landmarks like the frozen Minnehaha Falls and rooms named after icons such as Bob Dylan and Prince. Staff committees helped choose the artwork.

As far as the location, staff is right near the restaurants and shops on Nicollet Mall and Hennepin Avenue. Workers can also take advantage of the gym at the Radisson Blu that’s in the same building.

The renaming of the 36-story tower was a big branding bonus, Montminy said.

“It’s nice to have our brand and our name out there,” he said.

DoubleTree in downtown Minneapolis sells

The DoubleTree Suites in downtown Minneapolis has changed owners.

The all-suite hotel on the corner of LaSalle Avenue and 11th Street was acquired by New Orleans-based developer HRI Properties, which also owns and manages the Embassy Suites by Hilton Minneapolis Downtown hotel that is slated to open Aug. 24. HRI Lodging (HRIL), a subsidiary of HRI Properties, will manage the hotel.

“DoubleTree Suites by Hilton Hotel Minneapolis is an excellent fit for our portfolio,” said Gary Gutierrez, HRIL president and chief operating officer, in a statement. “We are poised for success in the downtown Minneapolis market holding a majority of the all-suite product in the area and continuing our relationship with the Hilton brand – this being the 11th Hilton flagged hotel in our portfolio.”

Starting early next year, the DoubleTree will undergo $3.5 million in renovations to the suites and the common areas, the company announced. The terms were not immediately available Wednesday night.

The DoubleTree had been owned by an affiliate of Connecticut-based Wheelock Street Capital. In 2012, the real estate investment firm purchased the hotel with several other assets from an affiliate of California-based Sunstone Hotel Investors.

Last year, HRI purchased the historic Plymouth Building, located at 5th Street and Hennepin Avenue S., for $20 million and pulled nearly $51 million in work permits last year to turn the 105-year office building into the Embassy Suites.