Bisnow/Joseph Pimentel Paragon coworking space in Hollywood, Calif.
Just a block away from the Sunset-Gower Studios, ParagonSpace at 1461 Tamarind Ave. is a 4,300 SF office campus with meeting rooms, an outdoor courtyard, a recreational room with table tennis, a kitchen and a lounge. The space is open 24 hours a day to its members, who pay anywhere from $30 a day or $449 a month for an individual to $2,994 for a company that needs a desk that fits six people. A Paragon official said ParagonSpace, which opened Sept. 1, has already signed up 162 members. Members could only access the space by purchasing Paragon’s ParagonCoin cryptocurrency. Though marijuana-related businesses are cash businesses, Paragon wants to usher its members to blockchain and digital currency, Paragon CEO Jessica VerSteeg told Bisnow. VerSteeg said the campus will provide a haven for cannabis-related companies looking for much-needed office space in the heart of Los Angeles as the marijuana industry continues to grow. VerSteeg is a former lingerie model turned cannabis and crypto advocate. She said she wanted to create an office layout that resembled WeWork and create a culture where cannabis-related companies can network and work with each other. “I love how clean they are, how organized they are and they always have the best staff,” VerSteeg said of WeWork. “That was my goal. I love Bob Marley but I didn’t want to create this Bob Marley-kind of stoner vibe. I just wanted to respect the entrepreneurial vibe that a lot of these startups are trying to go for. In order to really get into that zone, I think you really need a clean space.” Bisnow/Joseph Pimentel Paragon founders Jessica VerSteeg and her husband, Egor Lavrov
ParagonSpace is the first of what could be a growing trend for cannabis companies, especially in California — where the state earlier this year legalized the sale of recreational marijuana for adults 21 and over and the growing of marijuana in homes. Marijuana-related companies were once relegated to industrial warehouses and the outskirts of the city but now real estate developers are building office space in popular submarkets next to corporate offices. Later this year, Santa Monica-based Bow West Capital is opening a seven-story mixed-use building for pot-related companies in downtown Los Angeles. That property is already 95% leased, Bow West officials said. Bow West President Sean Beddoe previously told Bisnow his company is already exploring options to expand. Paragon acquired the Tamarind Avenue building for $3.8M and partially paid for the property in cryptocurrency. Last year, Paragon created and raised money for its own cryptocurrency, called ParagonCoin.
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Published: September 04, 2018
Founder & Interim Editor of L.A. Cannabis News