Today we are reviewing Frenda Colectivo in Laureles, Medellin…
Frenda is unique. It’s not really a coworking place, more of an artistic hub for people to gather, share ideas, listen to 80’s pop music, and enjoy a delicious homemade lunch. You’re probably thinking that this doesn’t sound much like a coworking space. Sure, it’s not like the super high-end and professional Tinkko in El Poblado, or the bigger, better-known La Casa Redonda in Laureles, but it has something that makes it a really great place to work from.
It’s small, so you might walk past the entrance a couple of times before you see the black and white Frenda logo stamped above the door. Ring the bell and you’ll be welcomed into a cute and cozy bicycle shop selling beautifully restored road bikes. Ask for Frenda and you’ll be shown up the stairs and into the workspace. The first thing that you’ll notice is that this a house, not an office. It’s full of personal items; books, old records, a mini recording studio, magazines, and lots of other trinkets. However, importantly, there are also spacious offices and coworking desks. The offices are spread out around the main coworking space, they’re large and spacious and all you’ll need to be productive.
The main space in the house is occupied by shared desks so that coworkers can come for a day or two and be productive. It’s an open space with plenty of chat and people walking by introducing themselves, which adds to the ‘community-feel’. If you like to work anonymously then Frenda may not be for you. It’s called Frenda COLLECTIVE because that’s exactly what they want it to be – a place where you come and get to know everyone and the things they are up to. The owner, Marcel, explained: “We don’t want this to be a traditional office space, we want it to be something more than that. A place where people can feel involved in the project, take part, and feel proud of what we’re building here”.
I immediately felt comfortable at Frenda. You know when you’re looking to rent an apartment and there’s that one place that you’re like ‘This is the one’? That’s Frenda – homely.
The location is perfect for a lot of digital nomads in Medellin. Just next to the Pontifical Bolivarian University, it’s super close to many of the popular hang-outs, cafes, and restaurants. If you’re living in or around the Estadio area then you’re only a 5-minute cycle ride away. If you’re coming from Poblado then I recommend taking an Uber.
Working from Frenda is supposed to be an inclusive experience. Marcel wants people working here to be able to feel at home and know the other coworkers. With that in mind, renting an office space is a really great option. You can share a space with friends, coworkers, or with somebody already working there. However, offices are limited and they don’t come up very often. Space in the main coworking area is always available.
An office is great value for money at Frenda but you’ll be lucky to get one. At the time of writing, there is one space still available.You can expect to pay around 300.000 COP a month for a shared desk in the main coworking space. You can contact Frenda directly here for the latest prices.
At the moment there is not a lot a foreign people working in Frenda. However, there is definitely a community here. If you want to immerse yourself in the modern Colombian culture and get to grips with Spanish then there are few better ways to do it than spending time here, making friends, and building a new network.
Frenda surprised me. Before I arrived I was expecting your standard coworking space. A place where people came in the morning and left in the afternoon without really getting to know the people around them. The owner, Marcel, is doing everything he can to make sure Frenda is not like that.