Alena Sakalouski Profile

Alena Sakalouski

"Every woman who has become a mother can recall the day her child arrived vividly. Whether she was the one giving birth, the one holding the hand of her partner, or the one who has given her heart to and prepared her home for a child born across the world, she will never forget the details of how her child came into her life. Alena Sakalouski is able to harness those moments, those expectations, and the dreams of the providers, care-givers, patients and families all into a remarkable space of a Birth Center.  

Alena is a talented healthcare designer who acts like an artist, working with a client team and key stakeholders to harness the energy of a space and turn it into a reality.  In the Birth Center environment, this means covering all ends of the spectrum—from extremely joyous, to heart-wrenching pain. From extremely aggressive and focused, to quiet and reflective. The journey of emotions for those who use the space is reflected in every major and minor detail. Alena's talent is truly listening to her teams, guiding them to the right balance, and sharing how their objectives can be realized within the space."

 –Jennifer Olson, VP of Strategy, BD and Innovation, Children's MN

PROJECT: The Mother Baby Center at Abbott Northwestern Hospital (2013)
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Role: Healthcare Designer

Two distinguished providers have created a joint venture and clinical service line, with this flagship new facility, to reach the trifecta of mother/baby care: top-tier clinical performance, targeted efficiencies to create an affordable care model, and focused attention on the care spectrum from conception through birth for both low- and high-risk deliveries. Combining under one roof a renowned obstetrical program with an entity known for excellence in neonatal care, this new facility allows mothers and babies to stay together and experience the highest level of coordinated care. Combining a comforting spa-like atmosphere with state-of-the-art technology, this project achieves an environment that seamlessly balances function with the needs of families.

PROJECT: Midwest Fetal Care Center / Minnesota Perinatal Physicians (2015)
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Role: Project Architect and Healthcare Planner

Designing the "clinic of the future" meant thoughtfully considering every possible scenario that could arise today, tomorrow and beyond. It meant incorporating technological advancements that allow live communication between OR teams and fetal care experts around the globe. It also meant providing comfort and privacy by designing with the future mother in mind. To do so, soft and dimmable lighting, outdoor views, tall ceilings, soothing and artful graphics, creative lighting and comfortable furniture were incorporated to create a sense of calm and provide positive distraction for families during what could possibly be some of the most stressful time of their lives.

PROJECT: The Mother Baby Center at United Hospital (in progress)
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Role: Project Architect and Healthcare Planner

The Mother Baby Center at United hospital is nestled in an existing building between Children's Minnesota and United Hospital in St. Paul, MN. Being one of three Mother Baby Centers within the Twin Cities, the brand was very important and is carried throughout each facility with levels of uniqueness for each location relevant to its community. At this location we focused on the gardens of St. Paul and used its flowering trees on super graphics that created art within the space. Sculptural ribbons were applied with an abstract flower shape and creative lighting was used to enhance the space and patient experience, defining the mood for the facility.

PROJECT: The Mother Baby Center at Mercy Hospital (2015)
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Role: Project Architect and Healthcare Planner

This unique location is the second of three Mother Baby Centers and sits on the edge of the Mississippi River. Similar to the other facilities, an iconic exterior, super graphics, sculptural ribbons and lighting remained the branding elements that were carried throughout the facility. Being the new addition was on the river's edge, we worked with the river theme to add textural elements like stone and wood and worked with a photographer to capture river images that symbolize peace and tranquility and encourage healing.