This post was researched and written by our dedicated Boston-based Siberian-born Russian Copass correspondent, Masha Kosobokova!
What Should You Expect?
Neighbours like Google, Facebook and MIT, strawberry & banana smoothies, in-office Yoga & CrossFit and hard working 24/7.
What are you thinking about, when you hear Boston? Probably not coworking in Boston. You might imagine Harvard, Red Sox, Dunkin’ Donuts, Super Bowl 2015 (Patriots are the champions).
Not everybody knows that Boston is officially the healthiest place in the USA, with the highest life expectancy rates. This was further proved to me when I suddenly discovered the healthiest coworking space ever, NGIN Workplace.
Situated in the heart of Cambridge between Harvard and MIT, NGIN is a magnet for those ambitious graduated students-turned-entrepreneurs. And, of course, for other people too, especially travelers and freelancers. Here, people are working hard to achieve their American Dreams.
The Big Picture
NGIN appeared in Boston’s coworking scene only a year ago, in March 2014. This newborn baby was reared by Russian businesswoman & COO Olga Akselrod and Mexican business manager Joan de Haene.
Liquiglide, a company led by top scientists and entrepreneurs from MIT, was one of the first members for several weeks. Then new startups such as Luminoso Technologies, iZotope, Twnel, began to join the space.
The NGIN team takes care of your wellness. While you work for innovation, science and the future of society, they pay attention to little details to help you feel well.
What You’ll Learn from this Space
Joan says that the health of coworkers is one of their main values. This was something new for me. Because people can stay here day and night, 7 days per week, they often forget about doing physical activities and eating good food. So NGIN reminds them by providing fresh vegetables, fruits, nuts and even strawberries!
Literally everything is included. Coffee and tea as well. That’s awesome! As for sports, they do CrossFit trainings (for real men and women, yeah) and yoga (good for your back which hurts). Trainings are scheduled every week.
Where You’ll Find the Space
With neighbours like Google, Facebook, Hubspot, and MIT, NGIN is strategically located amongst a collection of some of the most innovative companies and institutes in the world. That’s how it works: Boston’s downtown is for big corporations, while Cambridge is “the place to be” for eager innovators and fresh minds.
NGIN Workplace is very easy to find. Take the red line and get off at “Kendall“ or “Central station”, the walk from there is only about 3-5 minutes – or you could take their free shuttle. Plenty of buses run there as well. The name of the street is pretty nice so you can tweet it and be proud of yourself: “Hey guys, today I’m working on Broadway”.
As for neighbourhood, it’s full of nice cafes, restaurants, bars and other spots – there is no problem to find a cool place to hang out.
Where You’ll Be Working
If you like having space, NGIN is definitely designed for you. Everything is huge here – huge conference room, huge kitchen with food court, huge open space with simple long desks. They have special offices for startups and plenty of meeting rooms too.
My favorite is called “Machu Picchu”. One of coworkers, Renato from Peru, confessed that he chose NGIN because it made him feel like he was at home. During the winter you can see snow falling to the fir trees through the windows, quite a relaxing view.
Where You’ll Be Living
One of the things you should appreciate while working at NGIN is the beautiful historic neighbourhoods of Cambridge and Boston.
To see what I mean, you should check out the Irving House just next to Harvard University. Built as a two-family house in the 1890s, it was converted into a guest house in 1945, and has kept its historical spirit ever since. But be wary! It can be a bit pricey – so book ahead (and it’s cheapest, like many Boston hotels, in winter).
If you want something a little less fancy and a lot more central to old Boston, check out Berkeley 40. Located in the chic South End of the city, this hostel will give you easy access to downtown Boston, the Boston Centre for the Arts and “restaurant row.” Even though it’s located in central Boston, you’ll be able to commute to NGIN in 10 minutes by car.
The Events You Will Go To
When you work a lot, you need at least 30 minutes of holiday per week. So every Friday NGIN offers you a beer, and on the last Friday of the month everyone who had birthdays can blow out candles on their birthday cakes.
Also, the NGIN team offers a bottle of champagne and a free rental of the conference room to those who launch their crowdfunding/kickstarter campaign. And what is really cool – it’s a free opportunity for everybody and not just for community members.
Other events that NGIN regularly offers are business workshops. For instance, in February you may learn about “4 Steps to Compelling Leadership” or attend a VC panel and figure out how to reach your financial goals this financial year.
What You Will Eat
NGIN coworkers have their own Top 3 of lunch places. First place goes to Bon Me, It’s 5 min walk from the office and is basically Vietnamese sandwiches and noodles. Founders Alison Fong and Patrick Lynch started Bon Me in 2011, transforming a used DHL delivery truck bought from a guy named “Big Jim” to make the first of four colorful food trucks. The most popular item here is The Bon Me Sandwich – you’ve gotta try it!
The second popular place to eat is the Kendall Kitchen. This is traditional American lunch spot where you can find everything you want: breakfasts, homemade soups, salads, hot and cold sandwiches, wraps, pizza and different seasonal dishes each day.
The third is Koreana, (opened since 1993!) which is a seven minute walk on Broadway. The name of the restaurant speaks for itself: Koreana proudly serves traditional Korean food offering Korean style barbecue, a sushi bar, rice, noodles and charbroiled entrées.
Sometimes people call Boston the most European city in the US. I agree – you’ll easily find several neighbourhoods to walk around and admire the architectural beauty. I strongly recommend all around Harvard, Newbury and Boylston streets in Back Bay, the famous banks of Charles River and Beacon hill.
Boston is also well-known for its Berklee College of Music. Now imagine all those young talented students organising concerts, participating in open mics and playing a high-quality music everywhere and almost every day. Just check the agendа.
If you are a sports fan, you shouldn’t miss “Boston Celtics” at the TD Garden or “Red Sox” at Fenway Park, near Kenmore Square. Art lovers will love the well-curated Museum of Fine Arts, The Institute of Contemporary Art.
For indie and contemporary music lovers, you must visit the 22nd-24th of May for Boston Calling Music Festivals. This year there will be great headliners such as Beck, Pixies, Chet Faker and many more.
Tip! The favorite place of NGIN members for after-hours drinks is Flat Top Johnny’s. They play pool and call it “Thirsty Thursday”.
The Practical Stuff
The Copass Crew