Our Design Process

You’re starting out on an exciting journey and it’s reasonable to have questions about how it’s going to go. Here at Aurea Designs, we have a tried-and-true design process that we follow when turning your vision into reality. Here’s what you can expect.

photo of a pool with a nice terrace chair next to it

The Initial Consultation

Costa Rica Architech

The first step is the initial consultation with me, your designer. This is the meeting that starts it all. Together, we will start gathering information about your vision. I will listen to your likes and dislikes, ask the right questions about your goals, and get a basic idea of what you want to create.

During this meeting, we’ll figure out the basic scope of the project, put together a rough project timeline and budget, and determine the project’s feasibility.

Fee Proposal & Letter of Agreement

After the initial consultation, I’ll take all the information we gleaned from you and put it on paper. Everything you need to know about the project is included in this document.

 It will detail the scope of the project, the estimated costs, the estimated timeline, payment terms — everything. I believe that this clarity and transparency make for a smooth process overall.

Please note that the design agreement is an overview of the project, not the final plan. I will be developing the full design plan that details every aspect of the project after the agreement is approved and the initial deposit is received.

Site Assessment

Now it’s time to look at things in real life. We’ll make a trip to the project’s site to measure and plan. Whether we’re building from the ground up, remodeling, or restyling a home, we need to see what we have to work with, take measurements, shoot reference photographs, etc.

Concept Development

This is the exciting step where you start to see the final vision I am creating for you. With moodboards, floorplans and 3D renderings, elevations, and color schemes, you’ll understand what I am creating for you.

Detailed Budget Review

After a couple of weeks of our concept development meeting I will present to you a first approach to the project’s estimated budget. Which is flexible and will be adjusted according to the design requirements. To make the process less stressful, I source all the materials, fixtures, and furnishings for you. You’ll learn about this at this stage, as well as the tradespeople whose work will be required.

The estimated budget for our plan will include all materials, furnishing, and work estimates.

Presentation & Revisions

Once you approve the ideas presented, it’s time for our full presentation and budget. This is when we agree and confirm what the end result will be.

You’re going to get everything from fabric and paint samples to furniture selections, floor plans, and renderings. But don’t worry, you don’t have to be making design decisions at this meeting. All the information that we’ve been gathering up to this point culminates now.

I will bring only one or two options of each material because we believe it’s the best option to meet your wants and needs!

Of course, that doesn’t mean you’re locked in. You can make any desired revision requests which will then be detailed in the final presentation. Any budget changes are also agreed upon and the planning stage of the process is complete.

Terrace Design for Luxury Villa in Manuel Antonio
Hammock for enjoying the ocean view

Construction & Installation Oversight

Now it’s time to bring the plan to life!

I like to be heavily involved in the construction and installation pieces of the process. This gives the builders the opportunity to ask questions, we can spot mistakes before they become a big pain to fix, and so on.

I am also the one handling the material, furnishing, and decor sourcing. I make sure orders are made on time and track their progress, resolving logistical problems when necessary.

At some point during this process, we may sit down for a budget review. This is typically only required on larger projects that require weeks of construction. We want to make sure the project is sticking as close to the original budget as possible while being transparent about new or unexpected costs that have cropped up.

Once the construction and installations are complete, I handle the styling. Furniture, curtains, wall decorations, and more are carefully placed to bring a pleasing look to the space.

Project Reveal & Adjustments

Once things couldn’t be more perfect, it’s time for the big reveal. You’ve been looking at plans and 3D renderings, maybe even walking through the shell of your new space. But now is the moment when you see the final product.

It is my sincere hope that you will be absolutely blown away by what you see. If we’ve done our job right, you should walk into a space that is exactly what you wanted, even if you couldn’t visualize it for yourself beforehand.

The goal is to have listened so well to your dreams that what you see during the project reveal is exactly what you wanted — even if you couldn’t fully express it in words. However, we create space in our process for any small adjustments that might be required to make your new space absolutely perfect!

nature-inspired interior design details in a bedroom
Master bedroom interior design with reflection of the Costa Rican sunset

Project Closure & Photography

Once everything matches your dream, it’s time to close the project. At this stage, feel free to offer feedback on the design process and how well the final look met your expectations.

Our professional photographer will photograph the space and that — as they say — is a wrap!

All that’s left now is to relax and enjoy the beautiful space that was sublimely stress-free to create!

Celebrating the culmination of a renovation project for a beach villa

I would love to hear all about your next project