Viva O Sol Brazilian Fitness and Fashion, 104 University Ave., is owned by Claudia Diniz. Viva O Sol carries a variety of Brazilian fitness wear, including a brand new plus-size line, amazing leggings and pants, beautiful dresses, lounge wear, Brazilian bikinis, and more. The business opened at its present location, across from , in January 2012. All items are carefully selected by Diniz to enhance every woman’s best assets for all ages and all shapes. The business' hours of operation are 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Monday through Saturday; and 11 a.m.-4 p.m., Sunday. Check out its online store at www.vivaosol.com.
Los Gatos Patch: What did you dream of being as a kid?
Claudia Diniz: I grew up in a family that owns retail stores in Brazil. At an early age I wanted to get an education in business and become a business owner.
Patch: How does your personality play into your business?
Diniz: I am very forthright with all my clients. If something does not look good on my customer, I will tell them. I love what I do; I have a passion for fashion and the gift of looking at someone’s body type and knowing right away what will look good on them.
Patch: At what moment did you decide to open a business?
Diniz: I was tired of working for a large semiconductor corporation and after having my son in 2009, I wanted to do something that inspired and motivated me everyday. It was the challenge of making a business work as my family has done for years that has brought me to where I am today.
Patch: What inspired you?
Diniz: First, my mother was a big inspiration and has helped me get started. Secondly, I like helping women feel good about how they look. That inspires me. Brazil has very high best quality workout clothes and so many people look very good in Brazilian fitness wear. I wanted to bring the Brazilian fashion look to California women. My passion is making women look good in sportswear and that makes work exciting every day.
Patch: Describe the biggest challenge of owning a business in the Town of Los Gatos?
Diniz: My first big challenge was to make people believe in my products. I brought something new to the community and wanted them to be open to consider some changes to their usual wardrobe. I have the best leggings and pants that I call “miracle pants.” They make you look slimmer; give the body a toned look; hold in the right places, hides that which you don’t want seen; and I wanted women in Los Gatos to see how it can improve their total body look. My biggest challenge is to change the mindset that I only sell sexy workout clothing. I do sell those types of clothes, but I want the community to know I also have great dresses, loungewear, accessories and a brand new plus size line!
Patch: Describe the best thing about owning a business in the town of Los Gatos?
Diniz: The clients in Los Gatos are awesome. They have fun when they are shopping at my store. It’s not unusual for us to become friends, and all of them seem to enjoy the fact that they are supporting local businesses.
Patch: What is one thing you would never change about your business?
Diniz: My customer service. That’s me; that’s what I am about. My responsibility to them is to make them look and feel as good about themselves as possible. I want my customers coming back for years and years knowing that their satisfaction is always my first priority.
Patch: What is your business' greatest asset?
Diniz: I think I can say that it is my personal service and my concern to find the clothing that works for each of my customers. If I don’t have the right clothes for them, I try to send them to another store that may have something that works better. Viva O Sol is dedicated to selecting fabrics that protect women from the ultra-violet rays from the sun; hides those areas of the body one might not want noticed and enhances each woman’s unique body and shape.
Patch: What is your favorite spot in town?
Diniz: Vasona and Oak Meadow parks. I love spending time with my son and taking him there for walks, playing on the jet plane, the fire engine or riding the Billy Jones train.
Patch: What's one thing the community should know about you?
Diniz: I care immensely for Los Gatos. It is the most beautiful place to live in the world. Speaking only on the women I have come to know through the store, they are highly energetic people who seem to care about everything. Personally, I am a go-getter. When I see something that will improve things, I go for it. I am a single mom. I can’t wait for things to happen so I always try to make improvements in the store, in relationships and anything I can do for this wonderful town.