Located in an eco-village of sorts, this weekend home by Vikrama Architects has all the right angles to embrace the environmental obligations of the site.
When nature is the drama queen, man can hardly do much else than to sit back and watch the marvel. The building located on a site that shows off eco-sensitive elements like rain-water harvesting and solar lights, along with dedicated spaces for growing fruits and vegetables, a pond, a swimming pool, etc., lets nature take center stage by being unobtrusive in its single level.
The planning parameters were very precise – one with nature. In order to ensure that there was no difference between the outside and the inside, the house has a single room width design that encloses a courtyard and private pool. This creates a sense of privacy from the entrance, as well as ensures that the residents get exclusive access to the serene surroundings.
The architect highlighted that, “The client specifically wanted a detached space bringing in nature yet not compromising on the privacy. Hence one of the two bedrooms has been detached in terms of mass yet attached to the main structure through an extended walkway.”
The detached bedroom completes the introverted planning of the house almost like a full stop. Linked by one of the covered colonnaded walkways that run the entire length of the building, the bedroom stands bridged to the main structure. But why was so much detail given to the structure facing the open space in the center of the building? “It’s both a visual and spatial core of the home. The corridors themselves are created to generate a shifting perspective and fragmented views.
The design involved the elements such as, the swimming pool, colonnaded walkways and foliage to successfully merge with each other and create a focal point. All the spaces open up to this focus – the courtyard.” said the seasoned team at Vikrama. True to their concept, the core space has all the requisites of a design that celebrates nature. The walkways create a lucid link between the enclosed and the open.
Every design is led by a focus, be it a particular style, a particular vernacular commitment or an inspiration, to this weekend home being one with the lush surroundings is all what it is about. With inspiration drawn from different styles, the interiors can only be defined as “ethnically eclectic”.
The living room hosts a set of fairly contemporary furniture but the moroccan-lantern lamp shifts the focus towards itself with the sloped ceiling lending a strong background. A nonchalant four poster bed, and scattered vintage furniture and Asian inspired accessories all around the house make this place a warm and welcoming home – without fuss and clutter of course.
Neutral colours and earthy tones dominate the visual palette throughout the property. Exposed brick walls supply texture to the building’s exterior, and ensure that there is a subdued presence rather than conflict with the serenity of the surroundings.
The entryway is the only dramatic aspect of the building’s facade, with a double height feature wall and stark white column drawing a bit of attention towards the doorway.
A plethora of natural stones from Kadapa to Jaisalmer and Mandana to marble was used around the building’s exterior and in the central courtyard to create a natural transition from the greenery into the built spaces. Checkered patterned tiling for the flooring of the walkway and patio facing the central core emphasises the importance of the space – one for circulation and one to procrastinate in, maybe?
Sloping roofs were incorporated into the design of the structure, giving drama from within while syncing with the motive of fluidity with the surroundings. Let’s not forget that this development is a part of an eco-sensitive community and rain-water harvesting is a key goal, a goal best achieved with a sloping roof.
Text By Virupa Kantamneni
Photographs Courtesy The Designer