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Location: Ranakpur, Rajasthan, India

Project Work Status: Completed Projects

Area: 4 Acres

Project Completed: 2012

The experience of the natural landscape of Ranakpur region provides a spectacular setting. The forests change from lush green in the monsoons to dry and arid in the winters. The spring offers this beautiful carpet of red as the Tesu trees come to full bloom. In the midst lies the site for the hotel on a river bed parallel to a clean and shallow river.

The intent emerged as a respect to nature while not denying human intervention. A sacred grid of 9x9m aligned to north-south axis is used to bring a strong order and the grid intersections, where ever possible, is planted with large native tree, Erythrina Indica, with red blooms in the spring. The linear character imbibed from the flow of the river finds its way into both hard and soft movement. Long stone masonry walls reinforce the linearity and cottages happen along these walls. The palette looks to find a balance of the arid and the green. Large river pebbles reclaimed from the site during digging of foundation are used lavishly on the sandy soil creating a porous and low maintenance layer while only indigenous plants are used reinforcing the character of the local.

A square geometry is used to define courts as pause points in landscape. A huge, existing Budh tree on the site with its unique characteristic of a large spread of about 25-30 m dia, is identified as a focal point and presented as a shaded community space remnant of the traditional tree-chaupal. In order to be environmentally conscious, local material and manpower dictated the intervention. Rainwater is dealt with by minimizing hard paved area and maximizing porosity and greens on the sandy soil. Planting was strategized and a nursery was established on site to use the time of construction to maximize growth. The landscape provides a strong base for the architecture, a regional expression in a global context.

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