Design Process

Every project presents a new journey with a unique opportunity for expression. At Michiels & Partners (MAP) we embark on these journeys with the same values each time. The values of site, scale, natural light, materials, purpose and discovery. No matter the size of the project, we apply the same principles to achieve beautiful things. We tell our clients’ stories through our sensitivities, emotions and passion for modern architecture.

MAP takes on in design services and overseeing their construction phases. We offer a comprehensive, full service approach from the conceptual stages, through design, into construction, and culminating with Owner occupancy. Our mission is to assure that the Owner’s interests are kept paramount throughout the process and that MAP’s designs are carried out as intended, on time, and within the budget constraint arranged.


Using architecture to tell stories is what we love to do most. Understanding the site and its context, creating a program to respond to the client’s needs, designing order and geometry to achieve harmonious proportion and scale are fundamental considerations in our work. Every project is a new opportunity for expression and to create a beautiful thing. We prioritize natural light and large openings to create communication between inside and outside and mark the passage of time. We make nature part of our building and frame it so as to bring consciousness to the tenants. We create spaces that embrace a modern way of life and provide comfort and wellness. With a small selection of materials, we emphasize on openness, light, views, discovery and calmness.


Great spaces have simple rational floor plans that affect our wellbeing. When presented with an existing space to frame a new story, we give great importance to movement, form, light and scale. We focus on circulation and how architectural mass and volume affect the human journey inside a building. We identify public and private spaces. The restrictions of the structure are drivers for innovation and surprise. These limitations affect the program and play a key role when creating a beautiful interior. We seek to create spaces that are an extension of the architecture by using light, mass, color, texture, furniture, equipment, objects and tenants, all to reflect the personality of our client.


Often we find ourselves designing homes for an unknown client. Over the past 15 years, MAP has developed buildings in the DC area intended for sale. These commissions are unique as they are not only driven by the economic realities of each project and its environment but also because they target a wide range of eclectic people. These homes need to be flexible and able to accommodate all types of families. They need to speak a design language that is sensitive to all eyes. After a thorough programming phase, we make intelligent use of world’s natural resources such as sun’s warmth and light, natural cross ventilation, and nature surrounding the site. We keep the same values for each new building and tell a story that will resonate with everyone that comes in contact with the new site.