Better Workplaces - Connecting Plots' renovated 'marijuana den'

Ashley Regan
By Ashley Regan | 5 May 2023
Overview of all staff desks on the ground floor. View from the mezzanine level.

Employee preferences for WFH means workplaces need to utilise office spaces as a tool to connect with staff. In Better Workplaces, AdNews looks at how agencies use office design to entice staff to come in and create a company culture worth staying for.

The office of independent creative agency Connecting Plots, according to neighbours, was once the scene of a major drug bust.

While the Plotters HQ was an unassuming industrial space in Beaconsfield, Sydney, when the agency purchased it in 2019, staff soon found out the building's twisty history as an ex-pizza factory and ex-marijuana den.

Connecting Plots building before via Homehound.

Connecting Plots building before purchase, image via Homehound.

Unlike most agencies, Connecting Plots kept the renovations "in the family" as the space was designed by the company’s three owners, Tom Phillips, Sophia Kang and Dave Jansen, with help from their partners who have a good eye for interior design. 

Street front

The building's front after renovations.

Street front

The building's front after renovations.

Converted into an office within just two months, the office still shows its warehouse roots with exposed brick and a controlled colour palette of textured blacks and browns such as leather and wood.

"We wanted to keep it simple but sophisticated and create a space that invited creativity and diverse thinking," Tom Phillips, Connecting Plots CEO, told AdNews.

Casual work booths

Casual work booths in the breakout mezzanine area.

Upstairs sitting area

Mezzanine sitting area.

Being fiercely independent Connecting Plots wanted to create a space where like-minded agencies and businesses could share the agency's space and create a culture of collaboration.

"We wanted the office to be somewhere where fellow indie agencies who are starting out or scaling their businesses could come, network, share a drink and swap insights, problems and experiences," Phillips said. 

agency pictures outside a office room

Team photos hung outside a private office on the ground floor.

Connecting Plots currently shares the space with its sister production company Infinity Squared as well as The Park, a UK-based experiential agency, and We Are Gather, a business that designs large scale consumer events.

Previously, the space was also shared with PR agency We Are Different when it was just three but it grew and has since moved.

Company branding - logo - inspiration

Company branding.

Overview of 2 storey

Overview of all staff desks on the ground floor. View from the mezzanine level.

The office includes just more than 40 open plan desks and approximately 35 people combined across the four businesses. With the agency currently on the hunt for another small indie agency to fill up those final few extra desks.

Staff sitting in kitchen area

Overview of the mezzanine level. Kitchen seating area in the foreground. Casual work booths in the background. 

"We only built our mezzanine last year and it’s been a game changer," Phillips said.

"We use the space for anything and everything - from escaping our desks to work in a comfy booth, having an impromptu meeting, doing training and company-wide presentations, client workshops or just as a space to hang out for a drink at the end of a long week."

kitchen sitting area

Kitchen seating area.


Office kitchen.

 Staff in meeting room

Staff using one of the many small meeting rooms. Each meeting room has a TV which can easily connect to video conferencing and screen sharing capabilities, so it’s easy to meet as a hybrid team.

Small meeting room

Another small meeting room. Mezzanine walkway which leads to the boardroom.

Big meeting room

The large boardroom.

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