New opportunities at new base in Plan-les-Ouates

In October 2021, Allreal acquired a property portfolio and several companies in western Switzerland, boosting its market presence significantly in the region. It soon became clear that the acquired companies would be working together much more closely following the acquisition. As a result, Allreal immediately prioritised the move to a new base that would provide plenty of space for all the teams, a modern technology set-up and scope to simplify communications.

Allreal Romandie is responsible for real estate and project development, working alongside the general contractor Roof. The companies are managing the portfolio of yield-producing properties in western Switzerland, working on projects from the newly acquired development reserves in the cantons of Geneva and Vaud, and completing construction projects for Allreal’s own portfolio, for onward sale or on behalf of third parties. This means that Allreal’s tried-and-tested business model with its two divisions – Real Estate and Projects & Development – is being applied to western Switzerland too.

Until June 2022, all the companies and teams were working in one commercial building near Geneva Airport in Cointrin. The employees were spread out over multiple floors throughout the building, which made it difficult for them to communicate and work together as one team with a shared culture. As a result, the available space no longer met the needs of the workforce, which now numbers around 50 employees. Not to mention that Allreal was renting the space – far from ideal for a real estate company with commercial properties of its own right there in Geneva.

Ticking every box

One of the commercial properties Allreal acquired as part of the transaction in October 2021 was the building at Route de Saint-Julien 198 in Plan-les-Ouates. Having been built in 2018, it has excellent transport links and spaces with plenty of natural light and a flexible layout. “We used transparent materials to divide up the various office and meeting spaces and added some warmth with wooden floors,” says Anne-Marie Loeillet, Head of Allreal Romandie. “Our aim was to create modern office spaces that would allow us to start managing all our teams collaboratively across the board.”

“We’re delighted with how the refurbishment work went, but the project is still ongoing,” says Kevin Ranguis, a Site Manager for Roof who was responsible for the building work before the big move. A number of challenges had to be overcome first of all, with the existing technical infrastructure in the building posing the biggest issues. “When we arrived, there was already a system in place for heating, ventilation and hydraulics. We had to replace the monobloc on the roof for the ventilation system to be able to accommodate the fitness and wellness area along with the restaurant over the coming year,” says Ranguis. All in all, he is positive about the project. “I’m pleased with the result. A lot of effort has gone into making sure that everyone will be comfortable and feel at home here. And the proximity to the major traffic routes is really handy.” And now he’s looking ahead to the restaurant opening at the start of next year. “Every box will be well and truly ticked here at that point.”

Drawing on internal expertise

Allreal occupies the spaces on the first and second floor in Building C of this six-floor office complex. Buildings A and B are not owned by Allreal. The main tenant on Route de Saint-Julien – Immosynergies Holding SA – has invested heavily in the work inside the building, with the restaurant and fitness and wellness area being two of the main projects. In other words, Allreal is a subtenant in its own building.

Various work zones have been set up around the main part of the building, including an informal meeting space, meeting rooms, individual workspaces and communal areas with a kitchen and seating. The meeting rooms with glass walls are equipped with state-of-the-art equipment to make it easier to communicate directly with colleagues, suppliers, customers and authorities on video calls.

Allreal has even set up a showroom on the second floor, where interior design ideas like bathroom and kitchen fittings, door handles and floor tiles can be put on display. This provides future home owners with the opportunity to create the interiors of their dreams with qualified interior designers by their side for expert advice and guidance.