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May 26, 2023

Your host, Aya Shlachter, talks with Smita Sahoo— Owner, Founder, and Creative Director of āśaya | DESIGN.

In this episode, Aya and Smita discuss the intricacies of the business side of design and how creative thinking impacts overall business success. Smita goes into detail about her company's focus on emotions and thoughtfulness and highlights the importance of building strong networks and forming ethical partnerships, recognizing them as pivotal catalysts for success in the ever-evolving design industry. 

She also shares her vision for the future, which includes collaborations in India and working with NGOs for rural development, women's education, and employment. Make sure you listen all the way through to learn more about the intersection of design and business!



Smita Sahoo is Owner, Founder, and Creative Director of āśaya | DESIGN, a Chicago-based luxury interior design and architecture firm, with nearly 20 years of expertise in multifamily residential, commercial and hospitality design. Smita's passion lies in crafting spaces that foster deep emotional connections, starting with compelling design concepts tailored to her clients' goals. 

Drawing from a diverse background in architecture, interior design, environmental psychology, and sustainability, her unique creations blend Western design innovations with timeless elements of the East. Through her firm, Smita aims to create projects that positively impact clients' brand equity while prioritizing economic, social, cultural, and environmental enrichment. 

Smita actively contributes to Insightful Chicago and the University of Florida's Department of Interior Design's Advocacy board, sharing insights on design thinking, industry trends, mentorship, and EDI. She also supports SHaD (She Has a Deal), an organization promoting women in hotel and commercial real estate ownership.

Find out more about Smita at or connect with her on Instagram via



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