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Check it out: Local co-working options for home office breaks


woman in white long sleeve shirt sitting on gray couch with macbook
Your dog can still be your best friend even if he’s not the best office assistant. Photo by Cristian Tarzi

MANCHESTER, NH – Turning the corner into 2022, many people have more comfortably settled into the work-from-home lifestyle. Home conversions took the form of guest rooms transformed into dedicated office space, stationary desks were traded in for standing desks and stools, WiFi subscriptions were upgraded and espresso machines were purchased.

However, not everyone can or even wants to work from home.

There are many things to be said for work-life balance (and separation), so having your office in the bedroom, kitchen, or even the next room can present unique challenges to your workflow and productivity.

After scouring the Greater Manchester area for coffee shop treasures where I could find a few focused hours to work, I wondered if there were shared workspaces I could take advantage of. While coffee shops have much to offer for us traditional and non-traditional workers, sometimes we need more than just a piping hot cup of caffeine to keep us going throughout the day. Having access to office supplies, private space for phone calls, printers, and likely most important of all, community, can transform your work experience.

Co-working spaces provide much in the realm of practical support, but most owners and members will tell you that the communities and networks they’ve been able to build around their co-working experiences are truly priceless. 

In the spirit of collaboration, I’ve compiled a list of some of the top-rated co-working spaces the Greater Manchester area has to offer with locations for every type of worker. 

COHO – Milford, NH

Nestled within the old brick structure of an authentic Milford block, the COHO co-working space is filled with abundant natural light, plenty of workspace, and artwork worth checking your bank account for. This premiere shared workspace offers a ton to the remote worker or start-up savant. COHO includes a delightful front library that boasts professionalism and chic productivity. With multiple seating options in the front area, you can have your pick of stationary or standing desks, table space or lounge seating. Featuring both coffee from local roasteries and a rotating art gallery by local talent where every piece is for sale, you’ll find no shortage of community here. The space offers conference rooms for those team meeting days, privacy booths perfect for zoom calls, private office spaces, a podcast studio, and easy booking for members through their in-house app. Here, you’ll find that there is an eclectic group of frequenters that divide nicely into 40 percent remote and 60 percent self-employed. Productivity and community are cornerstones of COHO’s working model, offering flexible membership and walk-in options.

WBC Office Suites – Manchester, NH

Back in 2016, WBC Office Suites was the first to market, creating a co-working environment that didn’t quite exist in the Manchester area at the time. Since their open in 2017, they’ve built out their space to include a range of perks and amenities for their members. With an active front office, members get the benefit of having a full sized office feel with someone at the helm to greet clients. The collaborative co-working space offers two full floors of space to work with sit/stand desks, four conference rooms, and both small and large office suites to accommodate teams of any size.

For members, flexibility takes precedence with a range of rental options for monthly and daily needs. They cater to every kind of business and are willing to work with your customized needs. To bring a more authentic feel to the networking dynamic, they hope to soon return to their potlucks and weekly networking events that brought people together prior to Covid. This local Manchester work hub welcomes every style of worker, creating an inclusive work environment. They even have draught beer! 

SPARK Offices – Manchester, NH

SPARK got things off the ground back in March 2020, which as all of us experienced, was one of the most unpredictable times for business owners. With a mission focused on networking, building community, and collaboration, there were some definite challenges presented. Now, up and running, the space is open to its members and focused on helping small businesses and creators grow. Their membership model offers a range of flexible options that include access to private office space, conference room complete with tech capabilities, standing desks, phone booths, printer, and supplies. Having branched out of their original model to account for the changing tides of the business landscape, SPARK is launching a franchise model that will allow other business owners the rare opportunity to build their own co-working space with support and the necessary tools. This space is great for independent workers or teams that need an interim space in order to maintain a team dynamic. They soon may open another New Hampshire location, but be sure to tune into the developments around their franchise model!

Chamber of Commerce – Manchester

Manchester’s central hub, the Chamber of Commerce, has livened up the front end of their space to accommodate its members with a shared workspace. The Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health Collaborative Hub at the Manchester Chamber of Commerce is a colorful lounge space that features a custom-made mural dedicated to the city of Manchester and bright window couch seating for those sunnier workdays. Complete with conference rooms and meeting space for members, a brodie chair that offers privacy and stellar lighting for those last-minute work calls. It doubles as an event space with a capacity of about 50 people, an excellent option for your next company or networking event. All of the furniture is movable to accommodate your needs and there is a well-sized kitchen area available for use. Membership at the Chamber offers a host of notable perks to business owners that are certainly worth investigating, after all, they have the pulse on what’s happening here in Manchester!

Studio Labs – Derry

Walking into a cool, green, interactive lobby area with front seating for a delightfully, naturally lit daylight workspace you’re sure to feel inspired. This all-purpose production lab was created with the intention to offer creative community workspace to visual creatives and the like. Featured within the building are fully functional conference rooms with top-of-the-line capabilities, even light temperature controls. A plethora of workspace options include the front area, standing desks surrounded by dedicated offices for rent. Being a full-service production studio, Studio Lab offers a complete dressing room with full showers, vanity mirrors, and couch seating. The entire space is decorated with custom woodworking by local artisans giving a natural feel to the creative environment. For your shoot, they offer a fully rentable equipment house and their team handles all in-house repairs so that all everything is ready and at your fingertips. Highlights of the lab include a top-of-the-line podcast studio, on-site laundry, and a rare feature, Studio A which is the largest studio space in New Hampshire (and it has XR virtual production capabilities!). The Studio Lab is membership-based with a range of options to accommodate both short and long-term projects. 

LocalWorks – Lawrence, MA 

Co-working expands with the LocalWorks model, offering private office spaces for a range of needs covering a demographic of workers ranging from 30 to 60. With over 25 locations, 10 of which find their home in New England, the emphasis is on small business and entrepreneurs. Their Portsmouth office is now closed, making the Lawrence location the nearest choice. Offering month to month rentals, this space is a welcome sign to those in the fringes of the workforce. Each private office is customizable, making it a flexible option for any start-up or entrepreneur. In the LocalWorks hubs, you’ll find a range of clientele, but the majority of its members find themselves looking for an exit from the doldrums of working from home or simply need to downsize in order to flow with the new working landscape.

Red Oak – Manchester, NH

At the heart of Downtown Manchester, Red Oak Co-working is right here at home and central to all the Manchester attractions, making it an excellent location for those who like to step out of the office. It has a professional feel which makes honing in on the tasks at hand almost effortless. With an emphasis on teamwork, they offer packages for every in and out of office need. Both private offices and plenty of desk space create an environment fit for any remote worker or team. Saving you the overhead that a dedicated office space might cost, flexible plan options give low cost, low commitment benefits to Red Oak members. Amenities include everything from free wifi to shared kitchen goods like complimentary coffee and tea. On offer within the space are two conference rooms available to all members with full tech capabilities that make calling in simple and streamlined. Gearing up to open a second Manchester location, keep watch for the winter launch set for 2022. 

An honorable mention to COVE and Rise co-working spaces, also located in the Portsmouth area, and Make it Labs, New Hampshire’s only dedicated makerspace out of Nashua. I wasn’t able to connect with them for this article, but they came highly recommended from the best in the business. 

No matter what your specific needs are, whether it falls in the realm of aesthetically pleasing and collaborative or corporate feeling and geared towards productivity and output, there is absolutely a space that will meet you where you’re at and may even help you to grow your business. Be sure to check out these phenomenal choices for your next home office break.



About this Contributor

Vanessa Edwards

Vanessa Edwards is an expressionist artist, writer, producer, and designer recently relocated from Brooklyn, NY to hometown Manchester, NH. Vanessa thrives on intuitive insight, creating work that aligns with her passions and personal values of experimentation and creative expression.


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