Shefali Balwani

Shefali Balwani is a practising architect and founder principal and director of Architecture BRIO. Born in Mumbai, she studied at the renowned School of Architecture C.E.P.T. in Ahmedabad. After graduating she worked with Rahul Mehrotra Architects in Mumbai. At his studio she worked on a variety of projects such as the first phase of the Magic Bus campus in Karjat. Hereafter she joined the office of Channa Daswatte in Sri Lanka, where she worked on some of the office’s prestigious hospitality projects.

In 2006 she established Architecture BRIO together with Robert Verrijt in her hometown Mumbai.

Shefali has a keen interest in practising in a wide variety and scales of projects. She is committed to exemplary planning, design and execution of the projects at Architecture BRIO. Shefali is a frequent speaker at institutions and forums around the world. Amongst others, she lectured at the KVD forum at CEPT in Ahmedabad, the Landscape Architecture conference in Sydney, Australia, the MASA conference in Bangalore and at GSAPP, Columbia University, New York.

She appeared in the BBC documentary “Worlds Most Extraordinary Homes” together with Robert Verrijt. The program featured their project the “Riparian House” in Karjat.

india netherlands dutch architect Robert Verrijt Portrait

Robert Verrijt

Born in Eindhoven, the Netherlands, Robert Verrijt received a Master of Science in Architecture at the TUDelft in 2003. His masters thesis was accoladed with the Dutch Archiprix award. Being fascinated by Geoffrey Bawa’s architecture, he moved to Sri Lanka shortly after graduating. He joined the office of Channa Daswatte where he assisted on a retrospective exhibition of Geoffrey Bawa’s work. The office gave him the opportunity to work on various residential and hospitality projects, located in a wide variety of landscapes and contexts, such as the Kurulu Bedda Boutique Resort.

Struck by the increasing disparities in the Indian subcontinent and the opportunities it offered to achieve impact, he decided to move to Mumbai in 2006. Shortly thereafter, he set up the practice Architecture BRIO together with Shefali Balwani. Robert is fascinated with the diversity of the Indian landscape. The diverse climates and geographies of India encourage truly specific architecture with unique experiential qualities.

Robert has taught at various colleges of Architecture in Mumbai and lectures extensively in India and abroad. He sits on the Board of Studies of the Academy of Architecture, Mumbai. Since 2016 he is a member of the Bandra Collective and leads the bB design Studio, dedicated to eradicating homelessness. Robert is a registered architect in The Netherlands.