Copyright © 2017 Maria Vilhena

Maria Vilhena



“Reconciling multiple roles is incredible”


The designer Maria Vilhena is the founder of Maria Vilhena Interior Design, a brand that applies the Lean Design model to the projects it develops, among which the Recatu restaurant in Aveiro, which won the Silver award at the Muse Creative Awards. Feedzai SA offices in San Francisco (USA), Lisbon and Porto, and the Garça Real hotel in Meãs do Campo stands out.


How did the Maria Vilhena Interior Design brand start? What characteristics do you put in your work?
The creation of the brand was a natural process. The passage of a lighting factory and a couple of decor stores where I could realize what made me a sense or not this type of work, combined with a heritage of principles and values of a grandfather who was the pillar of the family, stimulated leap into a business of their own. We design exclusive pieces of furniture and decorative and aesthetically pleasing spaces, extremely functional, designed, and developed to suit each client.


Designer Maria Vilhena has a brand with her name. What importance do you attach to your own brand?
When I thought of the brand, with the notion that she is responsible for the perception that each customer has the company and the service we provide, I wanted to convey what I believe is superior quality work: to give each project the commitment, rigor, customer service and what you need and want. I believe, to reach a level of excellence in service quality, you must have a team of employees and cohesive suppliers who feel valued and part of a purpose.


What characteristics would you use to describe female leadership? Is it distinct from males?
The type of leadership, whether male or female, cannot be linked only to our personality, but must adapt to the people who make up our teams. The way we communicate, how we relate, and direct each element so that the company’s objectives are achieved is very much determined by the personality of each employee.


What added value can a woman add to herself, as a person, and to her life, when she chooses to have a professional career and give it due importance?
The satisfaction of being able to reconcile several roles, which, each in its own way, fulfill us, is something incredible. And they all add value to each other. Not to be cliché woman, professional and mother make us better at the management of our time, more creative in problem-solving, better listeners, better evaluators of the difficulties and I think even more courageous and resilient.


What is the Lean Design method and how is it characterized?
From the beginning, we implemented Lean Design, which we believe is the most correct process for thinking environments. Through this method we study the daily life, habits, and processes of individuals and companies, knowing the background to your needs, allowing us to design spaces fully consistent with the style of the personal or professional life of each client. We work so that each space developed is endowed with a perfect symbiosis between functionality and aesthetics, to provide maximum comfort and improve the quality of life of those who seek us, based on the concept of total excellence.


Do you think that the comfort and good work of the spaces are gaining importance for the population? How do you foresee developments in the market shortly?
The pandemic brought major changes to the families’ routines, the need to spend much more time together and to work/study/play at home. Naturally, houses have gained increased importance and attention. Regarding the evolution of the market, Interior Design is a rapidly growing sector, as more people want to rethink their homes and seek professional help for this.




Be the first to leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *