Sachin Agshikar opts for an uncluttered and sophisticated look for a flat in Ahmedabad where spaces flow freely from one room to the other.
“It was a dream project. Everything from the planning and conceptualisation to the actual execution was a smooth process,” says architect Sachin Agshikar of the sample apartment project for Gala Infrastructure (P) Ltd, Ahmedabad.
At the start of the project, he had some apprehensions. One, the client was new and two, the distance. But, his doubts were soon laid to rest. “The client approached the project with an open mind and we were easily able to convince them with our ideas.” And as far as the distance was concerned, a detailed plan ensured that Sachin was required to make merely three trips to Ahmedabad during the entire course of the project.
The Gala Group was looking for a fresh approach for their sample flat, something that would be a deviation from the usual style of interiors prevalent in Ahmedabad. “While we had complete artistic freedom, there were budget constraints that we had to keep in mind,” says Sachin. The design team took a few steps to ensure that the project did not go over budget.
Material that was already being ordered for other parts of the site was used in the apartment. However, the same material used in different proportions resulted in a completely different look. The grey of the exposed concrete ceiling contrasts nicely with the white marble floor and the white walls. According to Sachin, the quality of construction was very good and thus it did not need to be hidden behind false ceilings; something that saved both time and money and maximised the height of the apartment.
In the den where rustic wooden flooring has been used or the kitchen which is laid with grey tiles, the ceiling has been painted white. While most of the walls in the house have been painted white, an occasional grey or brown wall along with the reddish veneer of the doors and furniture adds some interesting accents to the colour palette.
The vestibule, den, living room, dining room and kitchen are all demarcated without the existence of any walls or partitions between them. Several civil changes were made in the original plan to ensure that the spaces flowed freely from one room to the other. Putting it in plain words Sachin adds, “For example, a series of openings can be seen from the dining area across to the den and this gives a wonderful effect of depth to the apartment.”
Light is an important player in the ambience of the flat. Sheer white curtains hanging right from the ceiling allow natural light to filter into the house and give it a warm glow. A lot of indirect lighting was employed to make the apartment more interesting. Floor lights have been used to highlight the openings and wooden members near the puja room.
The building is located in a high-end locality of Ahmedabad and the client was keen that the sample flat appeared glamorous. “They wanted it to have a wow effect.” He shared. This has been achieved by using dramatic lamps, mirrors and other accessories. Black and gold wallpaper on one of the walls in the living room and brown wood-finish wallpaper in the den has also been used to the same effect.
“I believe in minimising costs and getting the most on a low budget. I don’t think that spending money means that it is a job well done.” Says Sachin, and this design philosophy is well reflected in the Gala Group sample flat. He concludes, “A house cannot be completed in one shot, it should be allowed to grow. I tell this to all my clients when I give them their home; it is really only eighty percent complete then, the remaining twenty percent is left up to them.”
Text By Himali Kothari
Photographs Sachin Agshikar