5 of America’s Coolest Co-Working Spaces

It can get lonely working from home every day. Coffeehouses aren’t the refuges they used to be: Baristas these days start giving the evil eye to anyone using a laptop for more than a half hour, suggesting you’d better buy a refill or scram. If you’re looking for a place to hang your hat and plug in your computer, the better alternative is to rent a co-working space. More than 300 sites in the U.S. offer professionals shared use of an office for a small fee. To give you an idea of what to look for, here are five of America’s coolest co-working spaces.

Space12 in Austin, Texas. This multipurpose facility hosts art shows, concerts, yoga classes, and — Tuesdays to Fridays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. — a cozy co-working space with tables, couches, and a pingpong table. Suggested rates are $10 daily and $250 monthly, with group discounts available.

General Assembly in New York City. This 20,000-square-foot space in the Flatiron District aims to be a hub for tech entrepreneurs. The sleek building features a library, several conference rooms, a bike storage area, and open work spaces; a permanent desk costs $474 per month. Current co-working members include start-ups Food52 and Tipspring. There is currently a waiting list to join, but applications are available here. In addition to a vibrant community, General Assembly offers classes about entrepreneurship and other special events.

Citizen Space in Las Vegas, San Francisco, and San Jose, Calif. Each location boasts a large, open floor plan with dedicated desks, communal tables, and conference rooms — and maintains a pet-friendly policy. Unlimited monthly membership is $425. The centers also host workshops and classes.

The COOP in Chicago (pictured). Billed as the place “where ideas hatch,” The COOP offers desks, a conference room, and an office dog. Its flexible payment plan allows daily, monthly, or per-visit leases. (Monthly rates are $300, plus a $50 key deposit.) The space also displays the work of local artists.

Bocoup Loft in Boston. This co-working facility caters to coders and other techies, offering a dedicated desk and access to a kitchen, conference space, and event room for $400 a month. Drop-ins are free. The space, which is owned by open web technology company Bocoup, also offers regular training sessions in programming languages jQuery, JavaScript, and HTML5.

If your city isn’t listed here, check the Coworking Wiki for available spaces near you.

About Kathryn Hawkins

Kathryn Hawkins is a principal at the content marketing agency Eucalypt Media. She's written about business, marketing, and entrepreneurship for publications including BNET, TheAtlantic.com, Inc.com, and owns and operates the positive news site Gimundo. Follow her on Twitter at @kathrynhawkins.
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Julie Clark
Julie Clark

Seattle has a great coworking space called Office Nomads on Capitol Hill. Check it out!National office sharing websites like www.SharedBusinessSpace.com are a great resource to locate coworking spaces or available workspaces within established businesses that have unused private offices or workstations for rent.Of all the different forms of office sharing that have emerged, I agree with Genevieve, coworking is more about people and less about physical office space. Look for a community that you want to be a party of and contribute to rather than an "office space" location and you will have more success in your coworking experience.

Genevieve DeGuzman
Genevieve DeGuzman

Choosing a space is tough. The myriad types of coworking communities available out there can be daunting for the first-timer. With the variety of coworking spaces around, you’re bound to find one— or several— that will suit your needs and go with your personality and preferences.Each coworking space has its own subculture and ambiance. Each workspace also caters to a certain crowd— subtly or otherwise. That’s why most spaces offer at least a half-day trial period. Take advantage and see what type of community you want to join. Are you looking for an incubator, workshop/DIY space, a space that caters to your niche industry or a space that is more diverse, spaces for established businesses or are you looking for a space that will convince your boss you can telecommute?

Jeff Shood
Jeff Shood

If you are in California you should also check out the NextSpace (www.nextSpace.us) locations in Santa Cruz, San Francisco , San Jose & Los Angeles. We've been there for two years and love it. One big benefit is their "galactic" membership which gives you access to every NextSpace location for one flat fee, which is great when your working on a startup and constantly visiting clients, partners & investors.