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Meet the 2022 Designer Dozen: Cristina Arrea




Meet the 2022 Designer Dozen: Cristina Arrea
Cristina Arrea
Age: 32 | Associate, Design Manager, Gensler


Delivering human-centric designs showcasing a compelling story, Cristina oversees day-to-day project administration and ensures clients, consultants and team members are aligned with target objectives and project schedules. Described as a true team player by her coworkers, Cristina works closely with the ACE Mentor Program of America, guiding local high school students to pursue careers in construction and design. She’s also a co-leader of Gensler’s Genome Steering Committee, planning employee activities like game nights, fireside chats and art walks.

Rendering courtesy of Gensler📷:  Rendering courtesy of Gensler

How and why did you get into retail design?

Meet the 2022 Designer Dozen: Cristina Arrea
Growing up in Costa Rica, my hobbies were always centered around arts and crafts and using my imagination to create something. This interest led to pursuing degrees in civil engineering and architecture to expand my artistic capabilities … It has been a rewarding experience applying my creativity and leveraging the problem-solving skills I gained throughout my studies. From designing around people’s emotions to ensuring the functionality of a space, I love the holistic process that goes into approaching retail design.

If budget were no object, I’d…

…Integrate more technology and digital design into projects. These elements can further expand a brand’s narrative and truly engage the consumer through immersive experiences that bring them back.

Carly Hagedon is the Editor-in-Chief of VMSD magazine. She is a graduate of the University of Cincinnati, where she studied Journalism—Magazine Writing and American history. She also currently serves as a board member for the Greater Cincinnati Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ).



Embracing Whole-Brained Thinking in the Design Journey

Strategy needs creative, and creative needs strategy—yep, having both is really the only way of unifying all disciplines with a common vernacular with an eye toward building a strong creative vision that is foundational to the processes. Hear from Bevan Bloemendaal, former VP, Global Environments & Creative Services at Timberland, how to connect the dots between disciplines, claiming and creating a clear differentiation for the brand and ensuring that any asset (experience, product, ad, store, office, home, video, game) is created with intention.

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