Inside Havas New York, an advertising company which has its own dedicated meditation room and weekly farmer's market

Read full story

Tucked between SoHo on the east and the Hudson River on the west, global ad network Havas' New York office is a vibrant, artistic hub spanning six floors in Manhattan's Hudson Square neighborhood.

The sprawling 260,000 square-foot space has a noticeably modern and minimalist slant, with an open-plan layout that is dotted with plenty of communal areas, couches, edgy staircases, mini-pods and graphic posters.

But that's hardly the most unique aspect of the Vivendi-owned advertising giant.

What makes the agency stand out is its emphasis on healthy, holistic living and clean eating - a passion project of its chief creative officer Harry Bernstein, who was brought on board when Havas acquired his social media and digital shop The 88 in September.

"People always question whether there is such a thing as work-life balance in advertising, but what I'm pushing for is work-life integration," he told Business Insider. "If I'm asking you to dedicate yourself to this career, I have to be equally invested in you as a person. As a leader, it's my responsibility to lead people to this place of empathy and holistic living."

Havas New York has a dedicated meditation room, an analog room lined with hundreds of books and records and hosts a farmer's market for its employees every Tuesday.

We took a tour of the space on a recent Tuesday. Here are some highlights:

View As: One Page Slides

Here's how you're greeted when you arrive at the main reception of the office, on the eighth floor of the building.

Here's how you're greeted when you arrive at the main reception of the office, on the eighth floor of the building.

The agency sets up a farmer's market for its 2,000 employees every Tuesday, replete with fresh fruits, vegetables and seasonal produce.

The agency sets up a farmer's market for its 2,000 employees every Tuesday, replete with fresh fruits, vegetables and seasonal produce.

The first farmer's market was set up in early October, with Shekomeko Farms bringing in the produce. Havas hopes to expand and bring in more producers soon.

The first farmer's market was set up in early October, with Shekomeko Farms bringing in the produce. Havas hopes to expand and bring in more producers soon.

Here's a shot of Havas New York's chief creative officer Harry Bernstein, with his picks of the week.

Here's a shot of Havas New York's chief creative officer Harry Bernstein, with his picks of the week.

Bernstein believes that eating healthy, meditation and focusing on the analog are all important and help aid the creative process. "In order to drive creativity, you have to have a whole lifestyle dedicated to it," he said.

Bernstein believes that eating healthy, meditation and focusing on the analog are all important and help aid the creative process. "In order to drive creativity, you have to have a whole lifestyle dedicated to it," he said.

Havas New York hosts guided meditation sessions for its staffers every month. One of the agency's many conference rooms is dedicated for the session.

Havas New York hosts guided meditation sessions for its staffers every month. One of the agency's many conference rooms is dedicated for the session.

This is the group that showed up for a breath awareness session by meditation teacher Sah D'Simone on the day we were at the agency's digs.

This is the group that showed up for a breath awareness session by meditation teacher Sah D'Simone on the day we were at the agency's digs.

Here, D'Simone is seen explaining the benefits of guided meditation to the group that was in attendance.

Here, D'Simone is seen explaining the benefits of guided meditation to the group that was in attendance.

Crystals and candles were placed in the the middle of the breath awareness session by D'Simone.

Crystals and candles were placed in the the middle of the breath awareness session by D'Simone.

Here's a peek at some records and books lining the shelves of the 'Analog Room' at Havas New York.

Here's a peek at some records and books lining the shelves of the 'Analog Room' at Havas New York.

Here's a portrait of Bernstein in Havas New York's Analog Room. Promoting holistic living is also a way for Bernstein to attract like-minded talent to Havas. "This is a people's business, so it’s important to think about how you can engage with people," he said.

Here's a portrait of Bernstein in Havas New York's Analog Room. Promoting holistic living is also a way for Bernstein to attract like-minded talent to Havas. "This is a people's business, so it’s important to think about how you can engage with people," he said.

Havas is also trying to move away from traditional pantry delivery and catering services, experimenting with chefs such as Joshua Atwood to bring organic, healthy food to its employees. Here Atwood is pictured in the agency's "Magic Kitchen."

Havas is also trying to move away from traditional pantry delivery and catering services, experimenting with chefs such as Joshua Atwood to bring organic, healthy food to its employees. Here Atwood is pictured in the agency's "Magic Kitchen."

One the day we visited, Atwood had quite a spread ready. Here is a dish with winter vegetables with cured kefir lime, sherry vinegar and toasted hemp seeds. Most of the produce came from the agency's own Farmer's Market.

One the day we visited, Atwood had quite a spread ready. Here is a dish with winter vegetables with cured kefir lime, sherry vinegar and toasted hemp seeds. Most of the produce came from the agency's own Farmer's Market.

Atwood also made some celery root soup with chestnut creme and breadcrumbs, as well as some patatas bravas.

Atwood also made some celery root soup with chestnut creme and breadcrumbs, as well as some patatas bravas.

The walls of Havas New York are lined with graphic one-liners and catchphrase. Here's a sample.

The walls of Havas New York are lined with graphic one-liners and catchphrase. Here's a sample.

This is the WTF or the "What to Fix" box. Employees with suggestions or complaints can anonymously drop notes with their concerns into the box.

This is the WTF or the "What to Fix" box. Employees with suggestions or complaints can anonymously drop notes with their concerns into the box.

Havas New York has a wide, open-floor layout. But there's plenty of communal spaces like the one below.

Havas New York has a wide, open-floor layout. But there's plenty of communal spaces like the one below.

The agency also has its own in-house production studio, video editing suites and a mini-theater.

The agency also has its own in-house production studio, video editing suites and a mini-theater.

All of Havas' 22 global offices are called "Villages," signifying that they function as integrated units rather than separate departments for media, creative and strategy. Havas New York's floors are all connected with easy-to-navigate and sleek internal staircases.

All of Havas' 22 global offices are called "Villages," signifying that they function as integrated units rather than separate departments for media, creative and strategy. Havas New York's floors are all connected with easy-to-navigate and sleek internal staircases.

Here's a glance at one of the floors of the agency, which all follow an open floor plan.

Here's a glance at one of the floors of the agency, which all follow an open floor plan.

Staffers can choose to have meetings in these small, colorful restaurant-inspired booths and mini-pods.

Staffers can choose to have meetings in these small, colorful restaurant-inspired booths and mini-pods.

Or they can choose these glass-cased conference rooms, which are all named after big cities across the world.

Or they can choose these glass-cased conference rooms, which are all named after big cities across the world.
Add Comment()

Comments ()

X
Sort By:
Be the first one to comment.
We have sent you a verification email. This comment will be published once verification is done.