We would like to introduce Naomi Tosic from The Office Space which is just across the road from *Up the Road! With the most beautiful shared office space in Sydney, if you are looking for a space, this would be our pick AND we would be your local.
Naomi has been a long time supporter of NOMAD and has invited Executive Chef Jacqui Challinor to their Insight Talk Making Good. If you would like to join the conversation or find out more information please click on the link below.
1. How would you describe The Office Space?
It’s a great question because the flexible space industry has exploded in the last few years and the question is always – are we coworking? Are we shared space? Are we a Third Space? We’ve been providing serviced offices for small and medium businesses for over 15 years now so these labels often change. I would describe The Office Space as “authentic”. Whether talking about our original Reservoir Street building or our more recent Paramount offices, from the artwork to the furniture, and from our relationship with our clients to our participation in our wider community, everything is done from a place of integrity and quality.
2. How would you describe what you do within your business?
I have a wonderful team who run our spaces and expertly service our clients so I’m able to focus on how we are building meaningful community within our spaces, and how we are contributing to the culture of the wider local and business communities we participate in.
This includes simple gestures like a coffee with a client or connecting two people who I know would work well together, through to more organised events like our monthly ‘Insight’ business talk series (hosted in the Golden Age Cinema). My background is as a physiotherapist so I’ve always been drawn to the very human side of work, and how critical relationships are to a sense of well-being.
3. We love pouring over the attention to detail within your space. What is it about design and the overall aesthetic that is important to you?
This is where my very clever husband Boris comes in. He has the highest design aesthetic of anyone I have ever met, and his taste is impeccable. Everything you see in our spaces is him – from literally building the sweeping American Cherry office suites at Paramount, to choosing the artwork and furniture. We won the World Architecture Festival office interior design award (2017) for our Paramount office space because the attention to detail is so exquisite.
But perhaps everything you feel in our spaces is my contribution. Design is beautiful to behold but the overall experience needs to be more than the aesthetics. It’s the soul that I think perfectly complements his style. We won the Australian Interior Design Awards for Design Impact (2017) because of our culture. The award acknowledged that it’s what happens next, after the architects and builders have finished, that is most significant.
4. Favourite holiday or destination for inspiration?
Definitely Croatia. Boris grew up in Split on the Dalmatian coast and it’s wonderful to holiday there as a family every year. I am incredibly lucky to get to spend time in what I regard as two of the world’s most amazing cities – Sydney and Split. I could go on forever about the virtues of Croatia but I think it’s the colours that are most remarkable – the azure sea, the bright red lobsters, the blazing white stone of the town squares, and the black squid risotto that covers your teeth when you eat!
5. As a regular at NOMAD, what is it that keeps you coming back?
NOMAD is a perpetual high achiever! Sydney’s food scene can be very faddy and we the public can be incredibly fickle. We’ve been dining at Nomad since the very first day it opened and I’ve always had a great experience regardless of whether it’s a romantic dinner with Boris, a fun night with the girls, or a formal work lunch. The atmosphere is spot on, the food is phenomenal, and the staff always make you feel special. Oh, and Jacqui’s trout in vine leaves is to die for.
6. Best part of being a part of the Surry Hills community
A village vibe in the middle of an international city. I’ve lived and worked (and dined!) in Surry Hills for 15 years – Boris for probably close to 25 years. I love the people watching, the fashion, the food, the attitude! Everything about Surry Hills, even the men’s shelters and the brothels, makes it a truly unique melting pot of this great city.
7. What are you most looking forward to in 2020? (personally or professionally)
I’m really excited to take our Insight programming to the next level. We have had some phenomenal people on the Golden Age Cinema stage over the last 5 years – Rachel Ward (actor), Del Kathryn Barton (artist), Ronni Kahn (OzHarvest), Kelvin Ho (Akin Creative) – and now I’m collaborating with cultural dynamo Fabian Jentsch to be able create an even more ambitious and exciting program for 2020.
8. Being in a romantic as well as professional relationship with Boris, your business partner, how do you make this work? Is there a line or is that line constantly blurred?
Ha Ha! It’s a great question because I’m always curious about how Bec and Al similarly navigate home and work life. We are incredibly opposite in so many ways that it has proven to be a perfect fit. Boris is bold and brash and brave, I’m more thoughtful and cautious. He’s a risk taker and I’m more conservative. Boris is an amazing talker, but I can articulate well in words. We borrow from each other what we need more of (courage, kindness, word processing skills!) and we also push and provoke and encourage each other. Under it all is trust because he knows no one has his back more than me, and vice versa. But yes, the line is constantly blurred – when you run your own business, or two because Boris runs his own construction company – you are living and breathing work so there is less segmentation. I do think that keeps things really interesting though.