Today we’d like to introduce you to Sandra Diaz Velasco.
Principal Architect of EOLO A&I Design, Sandra Diaz-Velasco emphasizes emotion, detail, and craftsmanship in her award-winning work. Uniting architecture, interior design, and artistry, and guided by a philosophy of constant renovation and environmental preservation, EOLO is highly sought-after for luxury projects in Florida and beyond.
The recipient of AIA Miami’s 2017 Merit Award for Interior Architecture, Sandra has had her designs featured as prestigious cover stories in Luxe Magazine, KBB Magazine, and Kitchen & Bath Design News Magazine, as well showcased by the American Society of Interior Design (ASID) Magazine, Indulge Magazine, Florida Design, Miami Magazine, Modern Luxury Interiors, Haute Living, Décorbook Worldwide (2016-2019), Dering Hall, the Miami Herald, leading industry blogs, and DCOTA’s I-95 Billboard. This year has already garnered Sandra numerous achievements and awards, including placement on Luxe Magazine’s prestigious 2019 Gold List, North American winner at the 2019 NKBA Professional Design Competition, Regional Winner in the 2019 Luxe RED Awards, International Winner in the Trends International Design Awards (TIDA), and one of the 27 Finalists in the 2019 Wolf-SubZero Kitchen Design Contest chosen from 1,809 worldwide submissions.
Known for her sleek, contemporary designs that are on the cutting edge of technology, Sandra was featured by Kitchen & Bath Design News as one of the Top 50 Innovators of 2017, leading the industry in artistry, professionalism, and creative design. In 2018, Sandra was announced as an ASID Ones to Watch Scholar and Design Excellence Award winner, recognizing rising leaders in the interior design industry who are pushing the boundaries of the profession through education seminars over the country. Sandra’s designs have been featured as a teaching tool in an interior designer education course, CEU approved by IDCEC, NKBA, NARI and AIA, inspiring the next generation of innovative design professionals.
A four time consecutive Gold Winner (2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019) of the KBDN Kitchen & Bath Design Awards, Sandra served as a judge at the prestigious 2018 International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF), as well as the ASID Minnesota Design Excellence Awards, and was awarded Honorable Mention for Interior Design in the 2017 IDA International Design Awards. She has won for two consecutive years First Place in not one, but four categories of the 2019/2018 Crystal Awards for Design Excellence from ASID South Florida, including First Place in Commercial/Hospitality for her complete redesign of the Four Points Sheraton Miami Airport Location, which Sheraton has since incorporated into their company-wide design and branding. In 2016, Sandra was recognized by Ornare as one of Miami’s Tastemakers and was selected as a 2015 “Star on the Rise” by the Design Center of the Americas.
Love for all forms of artistic expression, inspired by her grandfather’s passion for detail and craftsmanship, allowed Sandra to develop a talent for creating structures and spaces with a holistic approach and emotion-driven design dialect. Her attention to detail, dedication to sustainability, and emphasis on a multifaceted, multidisciplinary approach are deeply valued by her long list of satisfied clients.
Diaz-Velasco began her career in Colombia as an architect for the firm Coomeva. After relocating to Miami, she worked with the award-winning Taylor & Taylor Partnership in Miami Beach, further developing her versatile background in architecture, interior architecture, finishes, art, and furnishings. This eclectic skill set results in a design style that is creative, surprising, and constantly dedicated to innovative, cutting-edge solutions.
Since 2008, Sandra has run her award-winning firm, EOLO A&I DESIGN, where teamwork and artistry dominate at every level. The firm’s philosophy is based on respecting the client’s needs and dreams in order to achieve an optimal, beautiful, and sustainable project. Sandra is a member of several industry associations, including the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID). She believes in achieving more visibility for women in the architecture and construction industries, and is a passionate advocate for women’s career advancement in these fields, serving as a Board Member for the Association of Women Architects & Engineers.
Having earned a Professional Degree in Architecture in 1995 from the Universidad del Valle in Colombia, Sandra validated her career in the U.S. through the National Council of Architectural Registration Board (NCARB). She is licensed in the State of Florida to practice Architecture and Interior Design.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Fortunately, it has not been a smooth road, and I say fortunately because thanks to those I have grown as a woman in all possible aspects. I have all the possible minority challenges. Being a woman in a male dominated industry has taught me to keep learning my trade, to be eager to compete so I can demonstrate that an immigrant, latin, woman, can make her dreams come true no matter how hard the bumps on the road can be.
I come from a middle class family in Colombia and I went to one of the best public universities in my country. I had to compete to get one of the few spots in order to be admitted. So when I graduated from my bachelor’s in architecture I thought everything was going to be easier after. Unfortunately, After a few years, my country’s situation at the time made me migrate to the States so I could find better opportunities to develop my career.
I did not have any connections in the industry so I had to begin from zero once again and that meant working different jobs so I could validate my career to be able to practice what I love to do.
My husband has been the most invaluable support along the way. He is also an architect, so each of us decided what we wanted to pursue. We teamed up and worked and studied non stop, and I mean no free nights, no parties, no vacation, no weekends for about two years so each of us could validate our professional title and have a license to practice Architecture and Construction. Nonetheless perfecting our English language skills was also another challenge that we are now happy to say is on a better standing.
After getting our licenses we faced another challenge, and that was getting a job in a country in which we had no design nor construction contacts, no school friends (since I validated my title directly with the NCARB), etc. I decided to begin from the bottom and I began as a drafter in an Architecture studio. Little by little I gained experience and after about 6 years I felt was the right time to have my Architecture and Interior Design studio. Little did I know our country was going to face one of the most difficult financial crisis of our times (2008)…
Finding clients was not easy but through knocking all possible doors, and joining all possible professional associations we managed to keep busy and begin creating our portfolio.
I can say that nowadays the challenges have changed a bit but we feel we have come a long way. Being a woman and an entrepreneur in the profession demands persistence in many aspects but as long as the passion exists I can say I am here to stay and I will do as much as I can to help advance women of all backgrounds in my beloved Architecture and Interior Design.
Please tell us about your work.
Eolo Design is a boutique Architecture and Interior Design studio specializing in Residential and lately Product Design. Part of our portfolio is also Hospitality and Commercial projects that have landed in our office because of our residential clients. Our projects are located in South Florida and parts of Latin America and the Caribbean.
Design is everything and we express it through the exquisite details we develop in our award winning projects. I love to compete and I am proud to say that EOLO DESIGN has won about 30 design competitions at International and domestic levels since 2015. Its all about emotions and how we express them with our holistic approach. Each of our clients is the best marketing strategy because they come back for another project given we listened and expressed their identity through the properties we designed for them. We strive in constant innovation, continuous learning and environment preservation to offer our clients only the best award winning works.
If you had to go back in time and start over, would you have done anything differently?
I don’t think I would change anything that I have done or any of my experiences. They have made me what I am today and I am very thankful for that. Learning never stops and I am prepared to keep on it.
- Address: 1925 brickell avenue , suite D203
Miami, fl , 33129
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- Phone: 3052509939
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