For the past five years, The Storyhive has called an approximately 3,000-square-foot office home.
Actually, we called it The Hive.
When we first toured the East End space with our future landlord, it was filled with old political yard signs, Greensheet newspapers and other remnants from former tenants.
We renovated the rental space, adding a cyc wall that turned into the set of many productions.
We gave the studio character and made it work for our needs.
Local artists painted inside and outside of our building:
Anat Ronen painted a bees mural and Kate Mulholland added hives to the exterior -- It’s such an amazing piece of art that people still stop and take selfies in front of our building!
Ack! painted a mural of an editor character inside of Alex Luster’s office.
Shreddi painted a mural depicting the three company owners and we love the characters so much they became part of our Storyhive brand!
Our team shot multiple game shows, puppet shows and adaptations of the Wizard of Oz and Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure inside the studio.
We hosted small parties, celebrated victories, birthdays and the birth of the first Hivester baby when Editor Alden Roelant and his wife welcomed their first child into the world.
Taco Tuesday was a regular occurrence with our team, as was Taco Thursday and Taco Friday. #tacoeveryday
Speaking of food, our team regularly walked to Villa Arcos, Champ Burger, El Tiempo Cantina, Ninfa’s on Navigation and Moon Tower (ask Tom and Alex about their ‘investment mugs’) for when we were feeling peckish. Some drinks were consumed at Voodoo Queen and Sigma Brewing (after participating in their Thursday night running club, of course). EADO is just a walk or METRO ride away with our favorite haunts of Around the Corner, True Anomaly, Huynh Restaurant and Rodeo Goat.
As business grew, more Hivesters joined us and soon nearly a dozen people filled our office. Shooting inside of the studio became increasingly more complicated as we had outgrown our digs.
So in 2019, we bought a 15,000-square-foot warehouse: 4010 Canal Street located less than two miles east of downtown.
This building will be renovated to suit our office and studio needs. It has high ceilings and plenty of space for us to construct sets for various productions.
We planned to impatiently await renovations before moving out of our rented property.
THE HIVE WILL SURVIVE
But on March 16, 2020, COVID-19 convinced us to socially distance from one other.
As with other small businesses, the cancellations of conventions, luncheons and galas we were scheduled to work shook our foundation. What started as a strong financial year, suddenly became an uncertain 2020 and we cut costs as much as possible.
With no one working in the same building and our lease up for renewal, we decided not to return to our rented East End building on Preston Street. On May 31, 2020, 3213 Preston Street will no longer be The Hive. The movers have packed up our furniture and put it in storage.
Instead, we will continue to work remotely until the Fall when our team will reunite in our Canal Street building. Spread across Houston (and with Mariana in Calgary), Hivesters face the same struggles of working from home that the rest of the world encounters -- communication issues, slow internet speed, power outages and child or elder care, among others.
We’ve scaled back plans for our future Hive because of economic uncertainties. But in our larger space, we’ll be able to socially distance and we’ll have an outdoor patio where we can work and dine.