Why we’re building a house in the middle of the ocean

Published on 2021/08/07

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Last updated on 2021/08/24

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by Nejc Zupan

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Let’s get the clickbaiting out of the way first: we’re not technically building a house, we’re renovating an existing villa. To make it more suitable for remote teams. The rest is true, though. It’s on a unique subtropical island in the Atlantic Ocean! OK, but why on Earth would a software company build a vacation villa? The answer is about a decade old.

When Niteo was just starting out, I stumbled upon Plone, a Web CMS with a fantastic community. I regularly attended conferences and “sprints”, week-long coding marathons with fellow Plonistas at various locations around the World. These sprints were great to learn from the best developers, to meet different cultures and to have a heck of a good time!

My first sprint, the Plone Cathedral Sprint 2010 in Köln. Many of the people in this photo are my close friends to this day.

One time at Sauna Sprint, somewhere deep in the Finish forest, with my laptop in my lap, lounging by the lake after a long sauna session, my bucket list grew for a new item: someday, I want to have a beach house where I can throw sprints by the sea.

How can one NOT have a great idea in a location like this!?

That day has come.

Niteo House is a 3-bedroom villa on Lanzarote, an EU island of eternal spring. It can sleep up to 6 people, enough for small sprints, or enough for the organizing team of a bigger event. There are similar villas and a few hotels in the direct neighborhood, so plenty of accommodation options.

Obviously, there’s FTTH broadband. Lots of outside seating areas, semi-private corners to break-out into smaller groups, wall mounted TV for presentations and a pool for brain resets between sessions.

The location is Costa Teguise, a seaside town on Lanzarote. 15 minutes drive from an international airport, spring-like climate all year round, warm enough for T-Shirts, but no tropical heat & humidity, lots of sunshine, a protected beach for swimming, open air gyms, promenade, sunrise yoga, (wind)surfing and numerous local restaurants are just a few minutes walk away from the House.

The work is definitely not finished yet, but we’ll soon be ready for our first Ocean Sprint (covid-permitting, of course), one of many to come.

See you at Niteo House!