Unable to separate an interest in design from even her earliest memories, Tere Mattos recalls being intensely fascinated by the elementary aspects of her craft since grade school. “From a very young age, I was particularly charmed by colored pencils, creating spaces with plastic blocks and drawing shapes,” she says. “Form is just something I’ve always been interested in.” Transfiguring this childhood preoccupation into a career with one of Miami’s most recognizable design brands, Mattos finds there are simple tenets that underscore every project she’s offered, whether it be furniture design, architecture or something in between. “Passion is, and always will be, my core principle,” she says. “Only that energy and focus can ensure the success of each project.” It’s that drive toward aesthetic brilliance that attracts Mattos to her team at El Dorado Furniture. “They have such a breadth of experience and utilize a real professionalism when selecting each and every piece of furniture,” she says. “Being able to design the architectural spaces where my furniture collections are exhibited is such an honor, and very rare in this field.” An urbanite through and through whose career involves an intimate knowledge of industrial processes, ask Mattos what she likes to do in her free time and you just might be surprised. “I thrive on contact with nature and spend an hour each day walking outdoors,” she says. “I don’t just enjoy it — it gives me a positive energy that continually fuels my professional life.”; ElDoradoFurniture.com.