Design & Sustainability Director at Grigoriou Interiors
Elina Grigoriou is a London-based Interior Designer, Sustainability and Wellbeing Expert who passionately believes that style and sustainability can be mutually inclusive. She is Co-Founder of Grigoriou Interiors, one of London’s most forward thinking design and sustainability studios.
With 18 years experience in the commercial interior design sector, she has extensive knowledge of human-centric design to complement her natural creative talent and passion for sustainability. She is an industry specialist in designing for wellbeing, conducting research and applying knowledge at every opportunity, continuously raising awareness of best practice on designing for wellbeing and sustainability in the built environment.
Elina is a RICS Accredited SKA rating assessor, and her support and technical involvement in the SKA rating initiative since 2007, has been instrumental in bringing the system into effect. She represents GI as a RICS SKA Development Partner, is the SKA Technical Advisor to the RICS, and is Chair of the SKA Technical Committee; in addition, she advises on its future development and international expansion. In 2017 Elina was awarded Honorary Membership to the RICS in recognition for all her dedication and work promoting sustainability in the property sector.
Due to her leadership thinking, Elina is regularly invited by industry bodies to participate in steering meetings, inspire audiences at public events, participate in industry or social debates, contribute in research work and is a frequent contributor to articles on design, wellbeing and sustainability. Significant industry contributions include the 2014 WGBC report ‘Health Wellbeing and Productivity in Offices” and a 2014 FGF white paper ‘Wellbeing Matters; assessing views on the impact of the built environment on wellbeing.’ Elina has been writing a book on ‘Designing for Wellbeing’ commissioned by RIBA Publishing, which will be published later this year.
Since 2011, Elina and her team have been developing a new wellbeing evaluation framework for interior environments called ‘a better place’. It provides clients and their designers with clarity on how to harmonise their occupied spaces with employee and owner needs, to support wellbeing, enable highest productivity and value returns, calculating the ROI they can anticipate from each. It is the first system of its kind, aimed specifically for the fit-out sector, which considers all the aesthetic design characteristics and has the users at the centre,.
Example projects include designing Virgin Atlantic’s £20m cabin crew training centre in Crawley ‘The Base’, Huckletree’s first co-working branch in Clerkenwell, Starwood Hotels & Resorts’ most sustainable stand saving €200,000 in annual operating costs, supporting GVA Grimley, Derwent London and Virgin Management achieve SKA GOLD for their London offices, and conducted a wellbeing evaluation study for a major British retail landlord’s shopping centre management suite.
Experience: March 2009 – Current, Grigoriou Interiors Limited, Director
2017 – Current, B/558 Sustainability of construction works BSI eCommittee
2014 – Current, Feeling Good Foundation Steering Committee
2013 – Current, SKA rating Technical Advisor
2013 – Current, TSB/Innovate UK competition assessor
2007 – Current, SKA rating Development Partner & Technical Committee Chair
Oct 2007 – Feb 2009 Careyjones Interiors Ltd – Senior Interior Designer
Sept 2000 – Sept 2007 PDP Group Limited – Interior Designer
Sept 1994 – April 1996 Professional Basketball player, Athens
Education: BA Hons Interior Design, University Of Huddersfield
RICS SKA Rating Accredited Assessor – for all schemes
Other: RSA Fellow, Honorary Member of RICS
Fellow and Tutor at School of Economic Science, London
On a personal note…
Likes: critical thinking, kindness and inclusivity, design in all forms, visiting galleries, experiencing real culture, caring for animals, listening to music, reading fabulous philosophy books, protecting the natural environment, swimming for hours in the Serpentine throughout the year, dancing, studying and tutoring Practical Philosophy, collaborating with people and being part of teams, flowers.
Don’t go there: un-reasoned conversations, pollution and waste of resources, malfunctioning IT equipment, January weather, boring industry exhibitions, “because we have always done it like that” mentality, people that are out to cut costs without thinking of the human and natural capital impacts, clients who don’t understand that ‘design’ is a process of good thinking and de-risking.
Motto: Get Excited & Make Great Things Happen!