Penbrothers: A Co-Working Space Encouraging Creativity and Camaraderie

Words by Frances Leones

Photos by Paolo Pareno and Eunick Nobe

Maybe it’s because I often saw them depicted in films and TV shows as places that suck out all of the life and happiness out of you when I was a kid, or maybe because the idea of staying cooped up inside them from 9 AM to 5 PM five to six days a week intimidated me, but I used to dread the idea of working in an office.

My pre-conceived image of an office was this: a room designed to be strictly utilitarian. Cubicles that line the place in neat rows where workers are discouraged from communicating with one another thanks to the oppressive black dividers that ensconce people in tiny spaces like cells. There might be a coffee machine and a water cooler close to the printer, and maybe even a small dining nook with a microwave so you can heat up your lunch. All in all, an office is a drab place that makes you feel lonely even when you’re surrounded by other people who work in the same company as you do.

(RELATED: 6 Reasons Why We Need Co-Working Spaces More than Ever)


So I was pleasantly surprised when I walked into Penbrothers for my internship interview for When in Manila. While there are specific sections designated for certain startups or small-scale businesses, Penbrothers’ floor plan is designed to make the workspace as open as possible. Since Penbrothers is a co-working space, meaning different companies share the office space, a lot of different companies are housed in here, one of them being When in Manila. With its unique layout, Penbrothers actively encourages people to mingle. Unlike big corporation offices that have designated floors for each department, Penbrothers is a workspace where all kinds of people from different companies can interact – which can come in handy if you’re suddenly encountering a problem that’s out of your field of expertise and need somebody from a different department to come and give you a hand.

The office is furnished with comfy chairs and very spacious, allowing workers to freely roam around while doing their jobs or just relaxing with their colleagues. As for interior design, Penbrothers’ is bright and colorful with coolly-designed wooden dividers that give workers enough privacy to let them do their jobs without making them appear closed-off from the rest of the space. Another thing that adds to the coolness factor of Penbrothers is that some specific rooms are given fun names. An example is “The Pantry” where the WIMterns bi-monthly Sunday meetings are held. I always have a blast in there, bonding with my fellow interns and WIM Ates and Kuyas over games and food while brainstorming ideas for the month’s special features. One wall in The Pantry is covered with doodles surrounding the name ‘Penbrothers’ and gives the place a fun and playful vibe. This isn’t the stuffy office used by workers of old, this is a place where people are allowed to be as fun and creative as they want.


The first time I walked into Penbrothers, I noticed that all of the workers weren’t all that stressed. I bet it’s because of the atmosphere around the area. Penbrothers lets its workers feel at home in the office and gives them an environment well-suited to young startup owners and small and medium-scale businesses. With such an open atmosphere and a creative design, Penbrothers is the kind of co-working space that will make you feel glad to come into the office every day.


Manning & Payroll Solutions, Co-working Space, Makati
100 C Palanca St, Legazpi Village, Makati, 1229 Metro Manila
Phone: 0917 830 3606
Instagram: @thepenbrothers
Twitter: @thepenbrothers


Related Stories