We’d like to take the opportunity to introduce you to the 1st and Client Favourite prize winners of our "Portugal Elderly Home" competition – Natalia Maslennikova, Sara Martins and Alecsandra Trofin from Portugal!

1st and Client Favourite Award winners from Portugal

We are a team of three international architects from Portugal, Italy and Romania, who met in London while working at the same architectural practice. There we developed numerous projects of different scales, programmes, and stages, both in central London and abroad.

Life took us to different places, currently two of us are based in Portugal and one in the UK, but the will to collaborate remains strong. Our diverse backgrounds and experiences are a key element to our collaboration and something that we intend to build on.

Natalia studied at “Sapienza” University in Rome (Italy) and Universidad Politécnica de Valencia (Spain); Sara studied at Universidade de Coimbra (Portugal), KULeuven (Belgium) and TUDelft (Netherlands); Alecsandra studied at Coventry University and the University of Edinburgh (UK).

Brief information about the projects that you/your company have been involved with. For instance, what scale have you focused on/preferred, any significant projects where the company/ individuals have been involved?

We are interested in a wide range of programmes, from public buildings, collective housing to private houses, and have extensive experience with mixed use and office buildings. But our mission is to develop future-proof and healthy buildings which, regardless of their scale and use, would be able to withstand the test of time, bring a positive contribution to their communities and joy to their users.

What does architecture mean to you and what is the role of an architect in your society?

Architecture surrounds us. It is in a place, in a colour, between light and shadow, nestled amidst landscapes and extending above and below us. It defines our movements, our daily experiences, and it stands as a testament to creativity and the passing of time; it is our legacy, narrating the story of evolution, of needs and aesthetics.

Why do you participate in architecture competitions?

One brief, multiple answers. Competitions broaden our views, revealing the multitude of approaches that can be taken to address the same question, thus transforming it into a powerful learning experience.

What advice would you give to individuals who struggle to decide whether it would be beneficial for them to participate in architecture competitions?

It serves as a test drive, challenging the coordination between an idea and its translation on paper. It parallels the experience of learning or enhancing a new language, an exercise that shows areas for improvement as well as your strengths.

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