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Nitido – How It All Started

By Kaizad Dinshaw | Jul 2019

It was the year 2007 when I completed my first contemporary interior design project. This was my own home, a one-bedroom apartment in south Mumbai. Since the apartment was meant to be my own place of residence I had the opportunity of designing and styling the space with minimal limitations. Except for budgets!

I started by demolishing all of the internal walls and designed the living and kitchen as one open space, which allowed natural light to filter all the way through to the entrance door. This gave the little apartment a bright and welcoming character. I like to call it a small space with a big heart! I then added vibrant colors and an eclectic mix of furniture that made the place memorable to anyone who paid me a visit. It was at one such visit that a close friend proposed going into business together. And over a fresh espresso, Nitido was born!

The first apartment I ever renovated.

During the early days of the firm it was only my partner, myself and a part-time interior designer that assisted us with our work. We usually had no more than one or two creative interior design projects running simultaneously. My focus was on providing our clients with a premium quality service, timeless and clean design, zero compromises on construction quality, great attention to detail and good value. Slowly the word started spreading and we started gaining popularity.

In 2008 we hired two full time designers and moved to our first office. This was a 150 square foot re-converted garage with an 8 square foot toilet. Budgets were tight and I remember decorating the place by pasting printed AutoCAD layouts to the walls! Frugal! But by staying true to our formula and serving our clients diligently, our clientele only grew and we soon started working on bigger apartments.

In 2012, we shifted to a larger office and hired more people, and I paid more personal attention to creating systems to professionalize the business. These investments paid good dividends and our turnover more than quadrupled over the period of the next 4 years. The year 2015 was a momentous year for the firm and for me personally as it was the year that my wife Maria agreed to join Nitido as partner and principal architect! As a result of our collaboration, chemistry and hard work, we experienced explosive growth, and by early 2016 it was clear that we had outgrown our office.

Finally a decision was taken to shift to a new space. This office would need to be developed as a greenfield project and take into consideration all of our current requirements and future growth. After a long search, we were finally able to find our dream space in Worli Mumbai that ticked all of our boxes.

Designing our own office was a lot of fun and we took great care to provide the best working environment for all of our employees. We kept the office interior design light, bright, airy and interactive using good space planning, light colors, solid pinewood and also introducing a living indoor garden and a café. This move marked our tenth anniversary and ten years of consistent growth. Coincidently in these ten years our team had grown ten times in size and so had our office space!

Nitido today: our Worli office is buzzing with activity. Time flies between client meetings, design workshops, and fresh cups of coffee in the café.

By staying humble, grateful and true to our roots, and by serving our clients caringly and diligently, we continue to grow and look forward to what the next stage has in store for us. Through the twelve years in business, there have been highs and lows and ups and downs but the most rewarding part of the journey for me will always be the strong relations that have been built and nurtured along the way.

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