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HomeInterior DesignABOUT the SPACE architecture + interiors: Redefining Spaces with Passion and Purpose

ABOUT the SPACE architecture + interiors: Redefining Spaces with Passion and Purpose

Today, it’s our honor to speak with Ar. Aneri Shah and Ar. Richa Shetty, the co-creators of About the Space, an innovative architecture firm that’s been turning heads in the sector. Launched in 2020, About the Space has quickly established itself as a frontrunner, offering groundbreaking designs and exceptional residential and commercial services.

Aneri Shah and Richa Shetty’s journey of creativity, resilience, and unwavering passion

From a very young age, Aneri Shah found her calling in architecture, with a natural aptitude and enthusiasm for the field. Her dedication and talent saw her rise to remarkable heights, culminating in her standing first in her Bachelor of Architecture with a specialization in Interior Design from BNCA, Pune University. Her innovative thesis also garnered widespread acclaim during this time.

She didn’t stop there; she went on to pursue a Master’s in Housing and Urbanism at the Architectural Association in London. This journey profoundly transformed her perspective and significantly developed her design vocabulary.

Parallelly, Richa Shetty, who shares a deep-rooted connection and an enduring friendship with Aneri, carved out her exceptional path. Excelling consistently, Richa secured her position within the top 1% of her class throughout her academic journey. Her relentless pursuit of mastery took her to MIT Loni, where she pursued a Master’s in Interior Spaces and Furniture Design, an endeavor that enhanced her skill set and earned her a gold medal for outstanding performance.

They’ve been fortunate to refine their skills at reputable architectural firms under some of the industry’s best guidance.

Entrepreneurship Journey: A Rollercoaster Ride of Growth and Triumph

The creation of About the Space commenced an exciting journey comparable to a rollercoaster ride filled with challenges, growth opportunities, and moments of triumph. It all began with small-scale projects focused on designing modest 700 sq ft residences, gradually evolving to grand-scale endeavors and managing projects with floor spaces surpassing 25,000 sq ft.

The inception of their journey was fueled by an initial flare of inspiration and a collective dream to effectuate a significant change in the realm of architecture and design. By pinpointing an unexplored gap in the market, they embarked on forming a company that aimed to establish a profound connection with its clients and emerge as a beacon amongst the intense rivalry.

Throughout their expedition, they encountered numerous challenges, hurdles, and unexpected difficulties that tested their perseverance and capacity for adaptation. They faced everything from intricate client dealings to project postponements and errors from which they had to recover, showcasing their flexibility and initiative in devising solutions and turning setbacks into chances for development.

In the midst of these difficulties, they took deliberate time to stop and consider their journey, applauding their victories and gleaning important insights from their trials. This reflective practice enabled them to perpetually improve and polish their operational models, procedures, and tactical approaches.

Gleaning wisdom from received feedback, prevailing market dynamics, and the valuable lessons amassed throughout their experiences, they stayed steadfast in their quest for distinction. They embraced alterations and novelty as essential elements of their venture, signifying their commitment to surviving and thriving in a continuously evolving business landscape.

Emphasis on Client-centric Services and Sustainable Solutions

This team specializes in a variety of services focused on creating spaces that are both attractive and practical for living and business purposes. Whether the project is for a café, a residence, an office, a commercial store, or a restaurant, they are enthusiastic about undertaking assignments that present unique challenges.

Their priority is devising environments that are thoughtfully constructed and pragmatic, addressing the distinct desires and predilections of their clientele. They acknowledge the critical effect that intentional design has on enhancing the lives of individuals who use these spaces, whether for personal comfort, professional motivation, or commercial hospitality.

This customized strategy ensures that the outcomes meet and resonate with the client’s specific requirements and likes, thus nurturing a feeling of pride and fulfillment.

By working closely with their clients, they provide customized solutions that accurately represent each person or organization’s unique identity and vision. This bespoke method guarantees that the outcomes align perfectly with the client’s desires and requirements, creating a feeling of personalization and gratification. They are proponents of the idea that expertly crafted and considerately designed spaces have a revolutionary effect, satisfying essential functions while elevating and enhancing the experiences of those who inhabit them.

Client Fulfilment: The Pillar of Achievement  

Focusing on collaboration and experimentation without being hindered by project dimensions or funding limits forms their core approach. They are on a quest to find individuals or organizations that echo their distinct approach to design. Their portfolio is adorned with joint projects with notable brands and clients’ guidance in creating their initial and retirement homes.

Effective communication is at the heart of ensuring client satisfaction. It requires careful listening to the client’s requirements, setting unambiguous expectations, and fostering ongoing conversations throughout the project. Constant updates, comprehensive progress reviews, and regular meetings keep clients well-informed and actively participating at all stages.

Flexibility and responsiveness play a significant role in fulfilling clients’ dynamic requirements. They confront challenges by adopting a proactive and teamwork-oriented attitude, making essential adjustments and tweaks to their designs as necessary. They also extend post-project support and maintenance services to cement client relationships and ensure enduring satisfaction. These services comprise warranties, maintenance documentation, and swift support for any post-completion queries or problems.

Establishing a Unique Presence in the Market 

Their uniqueness stems from a blend of varied outlooks, principles, and goals that influence their approach to design. By valuing diversity, empathy, sustainability, and empowerment, they aim to establish a notable identity in their field and create substantial effects with their projects.

Conquering Entrepreneurial Challenges and Crafting Success  

For young female entrepreneurs venturing into architecture and interior design, navigating through industries historically dominated by men presents its own set of obstacles. Gender biases and stereotypes can cast shadows of doubt on their competencies, particularly when interacting with contractors and laborers. It requires a significant push to assert their credibility and expertise against widespread notions of inexperience. Yet, these hurdles also pave the way for showcasing creativity, pioneering innovation, and demonstrating leadership.

Each Handover: A Milestone of Achievement

For a professional, the accurate measure of success is the client’s satisfaction with the completed project. This moment, when the project is handed over, stands as the crowning achievement of their work, affirming the validity of their design vision and the relentless dedication it took to realize it. The joy and connection a client feels towards the designed space and its intricate details are profoundly rewarding, mirroring the passion and hard work infused into every project facet.

A Testament to Aspirational Creativity 

They consider themselves incredibly privileged to have been mentored by a number of illustrious individuals, among whom MVRDV has been a significant source of both inspiration and education. With Winy Maas, Jacob van Rijs, and Nathalie de Vries at the helm, MVRDV is celebrated for its avant-garde and adventurous approach to building design. The practice is known for incorporating sustainability, technology, and societal involvement, thereby expanding the limits of conventional architectural design. MVRDV has been at the forefront of exploratory urbanism, transforming the connections between buildings, urban infrastructure, and the public arena. Their endeavors address crucial issues urban areas face, including overcrowding, the need for efficient transportation, and fostering social cohesion by providing forward-thinking solutions that enhance the quality of human life and welfare.

Defining Success: A Personal Journey

The dynamic duo, Aneri, and Richa, see success through a lens that values personal fulfillment and growth. They are dedicated to forging their own way, aiming for meaningful goals, and finding pleasure in the satisfaction that comes from within and the impact of their work. They understand that while material success and notoriety might be the by-products, these are considered ancillary to the primary rewards of their steadfast dedication and focus.

Fueling Passion: A Daily Pursuit

For Aneri and Richa, every project and every day is a fresh challenge that opens up personal and professional development paths. Creating serves as a form of meditation for them, igniting a passion for innovation and the pursuit of knowledge. The dynamic world of design keeps them motivated, offering endless possibilities for discovery and innovation. Firmly believing in design’s ability to change the world, they aim to make an enduring positive impact.

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