Smashing time

The office of the future is a much more multi-faceted environment than that of yesteryear. Having replaced traditional rows of desks for some time now, cafés and breakout spaces have become standard fit-out. However, in today’s stressful world of work, more ambitious elements such as massage suites and basketball courts have been incorporated in some office designs to let employees blow-off stream. Now, an innovation in Beijing might provide food for thought for office designers and shopping centre investors alike. ‘Smash’ is a rather literally named space that allows customers to erm… smash stuff. Armed with a face mask and baseball bat, one can destructively recycle cathode ray TVs, VCR players (remember these?), CDs and various other items that have been left on the rubbish heap of technological obsolescence. Involving physical exercise and psychological catharsis, the concept responds well to our modern concern with wellness. Its minimal concrete fit-out and pay-per-smash business model also lends well to pop-up offerings with the operator stated to be looking for new space in shopping centres. For those that have had a particularly irksome day at the office, however, you might be disappointed to learn that whilst you can smash most things, ‘the only thing you can’t do is smash someone else’.