Archives: Residential concepts

The daily bread of the office is to work on concepts – a lot of them for residential projects: beach houses, villas, town houses. Before a project gets to the point of really getting built, there are almost innumerable options drawn. At first as sketches, then as computer drawings. This post shows some of them because we think they are often too pretious and too much work has gone into each one of them to leave them virtually fade in some back-up hard drive 🙂

Beach House Scheme 01 GF S

Shown here is the design for a beach house on the Southern outskirts of Chennai. A large plot – directly facing the sea – offers the potential for a large house set into an exclusive landscape design. Thick walls of stabilized rammed earth make the main structure as we felt that this material would work best in the harsh conditions close to the sea while at the same time create a strong, almost archetypical, architectural statement. Rooms are oriented around various landscape elements such as zen gardens and waterbodies.

Beach House Scheme 01 FF S

The upper floor gives space for the bedrooms for the parents and their son, a large family and play area and vast roof terraces which could be planted and used as a second level landscape.

Beach House Scheme 02 GF S

A second version of the same project played with a different organization of the spaces around an internal courtyard.

Beach House Scheme 02 FF S

Here the two bedrooms are more interlinked to reflect on the very close relationship between parents and child.


Another project the studio worked on and put a lot of time into was a large private residence for a real estate developer in Bijapur (click here to go to the original post). The studio took a big effort into creating a house which not only reflects the architectural response to the client’s requirements but also our interpretation of the traditional architecture of mughal Bijapur. A low structure – strongly rooted in the soil – with spaces weaving around internal and intimate courtyards of different characters. Playful, waiting to be explored and with abundant opportunities to flow between indoor and outdoor spaces.


The roof areas are used to create a large urban garden – for ornamental trees, for farming, for gatherings and recreation …


A more modern interpretation of the client’s brief … More compact (also responding to the client’s concerns regarding safety in the at times rough suburbs of Bijapur), better aligned with the demands of a very specific Vastu consultants 😉


The first floor with three bedrooms, family space and access to relatively large roof gardens.


A third option after another round with the said Vastu consultant … This time he was convinced about the plans but then the client ran into a different set of problems and the project was shelved for the time being 😦

This option played with the strict geometry of ancient mughal architecture: eight identical squares form the base of the design interconnected with living spaces, corridors and semi-courtyards.


The upper floor houses bedrooms, home theatre and gym and gives access to an elaborate roof garden based on the traditional concepts of mughal gardens (“Char bagh“).


Another project, very different: A house in downtown Chennai on a 3800 Sft plot. The dense required program made us consider a semi-basement to house three cars and service areas.


The raised plinth is meant as a generous open space allowing for a free flow of the various activities of a young family. Entrance space transforms into a large living area which in turn interconnects with the dining and an open yet very functional kitchen. A large open staircase along with a lift connects to the floors above.


The floor above gives space to three bedrooms with attached walk-in wardrobes and bathrooms. These three rooms are interconnected with a large and well-lit family area.


Finally the roof floor – open, well lit and ventilated – houses a representative home office, a well spaced gym, entertainment room and a roof garden with a large pool …


Another house in Chennai – This project we almost brought to the level of starting the construction when the clients decided to shelf it for some time.

A suburban plot, the wish to create a modern house which can be used for private purposes or rented out to international clients. Four bedrooms, living, dining, service areas, garage, pool etc … approximately 6500 Sft of built up spaces with ample landscape.

Uthandi 28 GF Landscape S

The landscape scheme on the Ground Floor level for above project.

Uthandi 28 FF Landscape S

And the upper level … We still hope this project will get real at one point as we really like the flow of spaces and the landscape design.

Uthandi All 01 GF S

Another three houses in the same compound in South Chennai … Relatively similar requirements but very different looks were asked for. We tried to design the three buildings as an ensemble, different yet clearly connected.

The above Ground Floor plan shows the entrance sequence to each of the houses, the relationship of internal and external spaces and the relationship between the three houses with each other.

Uthandi All 01 S

The roof plan shows the different character of the buildings.

Uthandi Scheme 37-01 S

The two floors of a more traditional interpretation of a four bedroom house.

Uthandi Scheme 01 S

The neighboring plot (Ground and First Floor) after Vastu adjustments. Being in character almost a beach house (the shore is 200 meters away) water plays an important part in the design as does the overall placement in a green environment  with spaces large enough to hold big shade trees.

Uthandi Scheme 39-02 S

And a more contemporary version of the same program: water weaving around the various parts of the building, light penetrating deep into the interior spaces … we would have loved to see this one being built … Maybe some day.


Working on apartment buildings has become next to individual homes one of the main activities of the studio. Featured here the floor plans of a soon to be constructed apartment in West Mambalam in Chennai.

The main difficulty here was to provide for eight car parks for four apartments which demands floating columns and a restricted entrance into the building.

The back side of the stilt level floor holds box rooms for the apartments, a sufficiently sized maid servant room and the required panel and gen-set space.WEST MAMBALAM - LEVEL 01&02 S

the upper floors (two floors above the stilt level) hold each two apartments of around 1250 Sft. The requirement was for three bedrooms which made the arrangement quite tricky but we succeeded in creating nevertheless a well designed and well functioning floor plan.


As a last project in this post an apartment in the Chennai suburb Neelankarai. An odd shaped plot made for the interesting design, A stilt level car park area in front develops into an elegant foyer and functional rooms in the back. A play of water adds to the exclusive feeling.


The residential floors (two levels) give space to two bedrooms and the choice between a music room or a third bedroom. The front of the floor plate is given to a continuous open space holding foyer, living, dining and open kitchen.


The second option with a third bedroom.


The roof floor offers large spaces for a gym and social space and open terraces for urban farming.


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