At Bungalow we like to keep our eye out for new and interesting startups, and one of the more novel ones we’ve seen recently is Breather. Sort of like an Uber for office space, Breather lets you rent out spare rooms scattered throughout a city so that you can have a place to work or chill out if you find yourself with 30 minutes to kill. It sounds pretty cool but I definitely had my doubts. How would the company prevent people from using these rooms for illicit rendezvous? Do people really want to pay when they can just go to a coffee shop? What if my room is gross?
On a recent trip to New York City for meetings, we found ourselves in exactly this situation: We had a meeting at 11AM and an important call at 10:30AM. After searching for a Starbucks near the meeting location, we realized that we were in prime Breather territory. I went on to the Breather website, signed up as a new user and less than 10 minutes later I had booked a room at my desired time just 2 blocks from my meeting. Pretty good!
Now, our meeting was in midtown Manhattan and the chances of coming across a similarly convenient room in an even slightly remote area are probably pretty slim. For my trip though, the experience was all-around pretty awesome. Getting into the room was as simple as showing an ID to the security guard (he said they get Breather clients “all the time”) though my Breather happened to be in a co-working space which may have made it easier. In the room was a table, a chair to relax in, some random books, as well as some basic work supplies (pens, phone charger, pad of paper). Works for me!
We completed our call, were in and out in time for our meeting and were pretty pleased with the overall experience. With a name like “Breather” it seems like the company envisions that these rooms could be used for more than just work calls and might even just serve as a place to get away from co-workers, friends and all of life’s other commitments.
Oh, and what about the “illicit rendezvous” concern?
Hallway windows! Guess they’ve thought of everything…