Douglas Tolaine

Principal, Design Director, Sao Paulo

Growing up next to one of Sao Paulo’s athletic clubs, Douglas was active in sports at an early age and played basketball on Brazil’s national confederation team.  Traveling to other countries for competitions opened his eyes to architecture and urban design.

Douglas’s passion for sports shaped the designer he is today. It taught him how to be a team player, and sharpened his understanding of how people and spaces interact.

His grandparent’s love of art and music also impacted his development.  Painting lessons as a child created a life-long interest in the arts.

His family continues to influence his work to this day. Douglas’s two daughters inspire him to design buildings that are better connected to the natural environment, improving not just their own lives but society as a whole.

“Seeing the difference designers can make in people’s lives is what moves me forward. "
Dona Ana Rosa Institute
School new building
"I believe in the reconnection to natural elements - to our roots - as a tool to regain life-quality and I try to bring it as much as I can into my creations. This is one of my ways of trying to provide more happiness to people through design”.
Why architecture?

For Douglas, architecture came up as a path during a school project. In order to make the students understand geometry concepts, a math teacher assigned them to build a house’s scale-model. The task made him reflect on the possibility to join art and creativity to the work of building edification and planted a seed for a new designer to grow.