It’s always sunny at the Sunnies HQ

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The warehouse turned office of Sunnies Studios in Quezon City encourages larger-than-life creativity with its glass windows, giant vanity mirror, and wall-spanning mood board. Photo by JL JAVIER

Manila (CNN Philippines Life) — Tucked discreetly along the warehouse district near Eastwood, the Sunnies Studios headquarters — well-known to the brand's 240,000 Instagram followers as “Sunnies HQ” — looks like something straight out of a Wes Anderson film.

Since its foundation in 2013, Sunnies Studios has been on top of the branding game with a signature retro look that’s consistently present, whether it’s on its fun packaging for its sunglasses or at Sunnies Stations in malls across the country.

The Sunnies HQ combines all of these aesthetic elements to create what could very well be a physical version of its Instagram profile, with its white walls, pastel-colored appliances, and vintage furniture.

sunnies office One of the eye-catching areas of the warehouse turned office is this two restaurant booth-like cubicles with murals by Kris Abrigo. Photo by JL JAVIER

sunnies office Eric Dee Jr., Sunnies’s ​finance director, at his office, which is connected to the R&D department. Photo by JL JAVIER  


Being a magnet for double-taps or likes on social media is usually not a quality that most companies consider when building an office, but it’s definitely something that the creative director of Sunnies, Martine Cajucom, had in mind when designing the Quezon City-based space. 

Speaking from behind her desk (a simple white table topped with a few sample Sunnies products and stacks of paper and books), Cajucom talks about the glass windows that are featured prominently at the warehouse turned office. “We wanted something really open-spaced, really really bright,” she says. “So everyone can see us, we can see everyone.” The open space also allows the creative team to conduct mini shoots for their products using natural light.

It is obvious how this openness is quintessential to the Sunnies experience both offline and online. A quick scroll through the brand’s Instagram page is enough to see how liberal the company is with behind-the-scenes photos (always tagged #sunniesHQ) and requests for customer feedback.

sunnies office Magazines and other resource materials can be found around the office. Photo by JL JAVIER

sunnies office Around the office, equipment and areas are colored in signature Sunnies pastel. Photos by JL JAVIER  

Aside from the usual eye-catching areas — like the mezzanine floor that houses the creative and marketing department and two restaurant booth-like cubicles with murals by the local artist Kris Abrigo — the Sunnies HQ has a special selfie room (that’s now being used for storage) and a giant vanity mirror for people who want to take advantage of the great lighting.  

Photo shoots are a common occurrence for this reason — the mint green sofa cube and stairway have even appeared in the background of a few notable magazine covers and fashion editorials.

sunnies office Martine Cajucom, Sunnies’s creative director, in her office. Photo by JL JAVIER

sunnies office The Sunnies R&D room, where the recently launched line Specs was developed. Photo by JL JAVIER  

Bubble of productivity

Of course, photo opportunities weren’t the only things on the design checklist of the main Sunnies team, which, in addition to Cajucom, includes: Georgina Wilson, marketing director; Eric Dee Jr., finance director; and Bea Soriano-Dee, operations director.

Addressing the pastel pink wall and neon sign at the entrance, Cajucom emphasizes the role of productivity when it came to conceptualizing the HQ’s layout. “What’s really important and conducive to being productive at work is liking the space you’re in,” she says. “Also to just be visually stimulated when you come in each day.”

It works in a way that makes it easier for everyone to coordinate with one another. Toward the front are the director’s offices on the ground and the creative and marketing department on the mezzanine, while the research and development room and operations and finance department are located near the back. The quality control room is a bit higher up in an attic-like space. “I like our current setup because the marketing people are here, and right beside us are the creative people,” says Sam Santos, digital marketing manager. “So it’s so much easier for me to communicate with them.”

sunnies office The Sunnies Studios office is designed to have prominent glass windows to let in as much natural light as possible. “We wanted something really open-spaced, really really bright,” Martine Cajucom says. “So everyone can see us, we can see everyone.” Photo by JL JAVIER

sunnies office Visual cues and inspirations can be found around the office so people can feel motivated and productive. Photos by JL JAVIER  

The creative and marketing department is a treasure trove for anyone looking for creative influence. Right now, its mood board, which spans an entire wall, features a variety of the group’s current inspirations, which range from their own advertisements to 90s-era Johnny Depp. They have copies of Vogue Italia, Homme +, and Wilson’s book with Solenn Heussaff, “Besties,” lying around, as well as a Bluetooth speaker that anyone can use to play music. Catherine Yu, Sunnies’s marketing manager, says that this, along with the visual aspect, makes the office environment very relaxed. “The ambience is very creative, very conducive to creating new stuff,” she says.

That’s not to say that the over 130-person strong Sunnies team isn’t always hard at work. Tin Dabbay, the brand’s creative manager and content strategist, says that the young environment is also very fast-paced “in the sense that it’s super high-volume.” She adds: “We really expanded so fast in five years — from 20 branches, it’s now 45. It’s kind of crazy in that sense."

Nowadays, the company continues to be busy branching out, as evidenced by the recently launched Sunnies Specs store and the upcoming Sunnies Cafe. But even as its expansion seems to show no signs of stopping, Sunnies remains able to maintain a cohesive brand, with its focus still set on affordable and stylish eyewear created within the Instagram-worthy Sunnies HQ.

sunnies office The HQ also serves as the hub for Sunnies's packaging segment. Photo by JL JAVIER  

sunnies office The mood board wall at the Sunnies Studios HQ. Photo by JL JAVIER