Brisbane will soon boast a new co-working space with the launch of The Cove in Newstead at the end of September. According to owner and director Courtney Norris, the experience has been designed to encourage creatives to be “brave in business” while eliminating their “Monday blues”.
Norris told Dynamic Business that Brisbane has always boasted “creative, innovative and business-minded individuals” but that previously, many have had to move abroad or head interstate to nurture their ideas and successfully grow their businesses. Fortunately, she explained, times have changed: “Brisbane’s business landscape has evolved, with more capital available to local talent to encourage them to keep their roots firmly here, including initiatives run through the Brisbane City Council to assist startups with funding.”
Nevertheless, Norris said Brisbane’s co-working offerings haven’t been geared towards startup founders and other business owners “who don’t want a standard corporate space and who not only have an eye for functionality and design but want a cool space where they can be surrounded by their peers and host clients for after-work functions”. She added, “I could see there was a need in Brisbane for a more boutique, premium co-working space with the services of a great hotel – and that’s how the idea for The Cove was hatched!”
Since the launch of its website and social media presence, Norris said The Cove, which can accommodate 55 individuals, has enjoyed ‘healthy interest’ especially from within the creative industries due to “the design of the environment, which has a professional-space-meets-private-club feel”. She points out, however, that “no industry is favoured over another”.
“I don’t want to be pigeonholed,” she explained. “We want entrepreneurs from different industries to join our community because they can see the genuine business benefits of our co-working offering. We’re in discussions with a number of people in Finance, Accounting, Law, Medicine and other service orientated industries, and we’re taking Letters of Intent from interested parties who wish to have first option for a specific office or desk, so it is first in best dressed! From my experience, the diversity of fields that will be represented amongst our members will add to our success and provide opportunities for members to work together organically.”
Norris said The Cove will offer its members a range of services, including access to accounting and legal advice as well as IT support, business concierge (e.g. office services, travel arrangements and event planning) and a mentorship program featuring “a curated group of successful business leaders” who will be revealed at the official opening of The Cove.
Members will also be able to participate in a wellness program, which Norris said is “vital to the overall offering at The Cove”. She explained, “I have attended numerous leadership conferences and it is evident that finding the right balance between work and well-being is a struggle for any individual – but particularly startups and small business operators. We are mindful of the important role that wellness practices can play in the success of a business when they’re incorporated into an entrepreneur’s everyday life. Sleep deprivation, poor eating, high stress levels can defeat the smartest and brightest. Our wellness program will encompass, mediation, exercise, nutrition and beyond! Our first weekly wellness events will be COVE X ELEVEN ROOFTOP, where we have teamed together with this leading Brisbane’s open-air venue and local fitness providers for wellness activities at sunrise”.
Asked what sort of culture she is hoping to nurture at The Cove, Norris replied: “One that stimulates our members to be brave in their business decisions and to seek out opportunities to work together. I want this space to inspire our members and eliminate Monday blues!”