Brazilian architect and Interior designer João Armentano says he feels most creative early in the morning. The quietness of his home is the source of inspiration for some of his projects. In an exclusive chat with azureazure.com, Armentano spoke about his design for a sumptuous penthouse at Marea in South Beach. He also shared some insight about his approach to the creative process.
“I came from Brazil and I am very proud to be here. They invited me to design the Marea penthouse, which is a unique project because of its space, not very big, but very unique.” For Armentano, the design should go by the hand of open-mindedness. “Brazilians have houses all over the United States because the American way of life is very appealing to us. The concept of the American apartment is very practical and very easy and intelligent for living well. I take this concept, and I put this practical living ambiance in my designs.
Armentano earned international recognition with his design of Sao Paulo’s “Hotel Unique”, an architectural landmark created by Brazilian architect Rudy Ohtec with interior designs by Armentano. Since his professional start, the Brazilian press reviewed him as a very original trendsetter. He is recognized for bringing the loft concept to Brazil. He describes himself as a client mind-reader and emphasizes the importance of understanding the personality of his clients. “I create simple forms that are not complicated to live with. For my team, the most important thing in one apartment is not the kitchen or the floor, it is the owner, our client. My art resembles the owner of the apartment. The feel and the personality of the person who is going to live at the project should be the main ingredient for beauty.
João Armentano resides in Sao Paulo in the neighborhood of Ibirapuera, very close to the Ibirapuera Park, the city’s most important natural resource, considered the city’s lung. He wakes up before everyone else at home to get some inspiration and listen to the birds that visit his patio at sunrise. When asked about his ideal place to live, he says, “even though I would love to live in an open space loft with no walls, I have a house because of the family, so the home is not “me” only. But it is special, I live in the park and 300 birds visit my house and my garden. I feed them every day and if someone else tries to feed them they leave, but not with me.
His brand “Estilo JA” is stamped on residential and commercial projects alike, in large and smaller magnitudes. He has created bars, apartments, buildings, and restaurants in Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Mexico, Belgium, The Netherlands, and France, to name a few. He is making inroads in the US market with what he calls the Brazilian free lifestyle and upscale Miami projects like Paraiso Bay, Hyde Resort and Residences, The Bath Club, and 1 Hotel & Homes. “In my profession, I need to go inside people, it is not my taste. The Bath Club, in Miami Beach, for example, is one of my favorites. If I would live in Miami, I think it will be there, you have the villas that go down to the beach, it is wonderful.”
His successful presence in Miami has garnered him an international clientele in South Florida. He emphasizes that living spaces should always have some type of concentration in open space. “I like working with natural elements and natural light. To live only in air conditioning all the time is not ideal. My architecture and design will always have some open space.”
His unique style and understanding of the use of space, this talented South American architect has positioned himself as one of the most coveted professionals in America. His work not only elevates the profile of the cities where he works but also improve the quality of life of the people who live in the houses he designs. ■