The house was built to suit the requirements and preferences of clients, Mr and Mrs Aaksh Shah, but over the years, their lifestyle, needs and aspirations had changed. They realised their home needed a complete revamp and they asked architect Ashish Kesurvala to take on the job. For Ashish, it was an exercise of discovering and transforming the spaces in the house.
After studying the plans in detail, Ashish suggested some changes in the structure itself to cater to the new requirements. As the walls started to move, be removed, the journey slowly began where both architect and clients found areas, which could be designed with more meaningful and different identities. Changes began right from the entry point and continued throughout the house. Advantage was taken of a very large patio at the back, which became a focal point of the house, visible from all the rooms. It allows in lots of reflected and diffused daylight without direct sunshine, as it is north facing. All the balconies were taken in and old wooden doors and windows replaced by high performance, double glazed units in aluminum frames. This in itself made the rooms appear brighter and larger and helped in both sound and heat insulation. The rear verandah was large and not used to its full potential - a dining room was created in one part of it. Eating here, surrounded by greenery is a pleasure and makes you feel that you are in a different world.
The architect wanted to create volumetric purity - austere, compact and in monochrome and he changed the earlier scheme to bright white both inside and outside - it imparts simplicity of form, devoid of any complexities. The flooring of the whole house got pure white Thasos marble and the large back patio was redesigned with landscaping. The living room is the centre of the house. A large canvas by artist Manish Chavda complements its high ceiling. The furniture in wood, some of it white, along with Minotti sofas, is elegant. All the bedrooms and bathrooms are minimalistic in design. A simple yet basic scheme of wood, white and grey and some splash of colours make the bathrooms extremely attractive.
The upper floor has an open space for the children's activities with a wall lined with a collage of family photographs; a large antique cabinet holds trophies, books, games, etc. Then there is a space converted into a studio for the lady of the house who is a painter. All her works are hung on the walls, while her easel stands in the centre of the room. Along with an antique table and chairs, this is the artistic corner of the house. Two of the studio's sides are fully glazed so that she can keep an eye over the goings on in the house.
Ashish developed the design of the staircase railing - it is a unique combination of a metal box section clad on the inside with wood. The idea of using the metal section was to have a long unsupported length of railing and along with wood, add warmth to the house.
The house is not about putting together some design styles and creating an image, but rather, it is the slow unfolding experience of place, the place where one wants to live in. Done in a fusion style where modern and classic coexist, there is no trace of any timeframe to connect with. The boundary between the house interior and its exterior is almost non-existent - it is simply a white canvas both inside and outside, a feat by architect Ashish Kesurvala.