Ethnic aesthetics meet contemporary design at this Hyderabad home by Sona Reddy

JUN 21, 2024 | By Pratishtha Rana
Depicting stories from the Mahabharata are a custom made wooden panels by Ramesh Gorjala that lead towards the staircase wall in tadelakt plaster (A Moroccan treatment) by Thumb Impressions. The stepped flooring in satin finish Kota stone connects as well as visually divides the living space and the dining area. Botanical artworks on the dining wall are by Nirupa Rao; photography by Pankaj Anand
The dry kitchen with taps from Gessi is equally a jewel in its own right. Lights are from LZF and antique windows by Room Therapy adorn the backdrop; Photography by Pankaj Anand
The daughter’s bathroom has a freestanding bathtub by Antonio Lupi, a mirror is by Studio Chisel and taps are by Gessi. The ladder is custom made; Photography by Pankaj Anand

Hear me out on this. There is a consuming beauty in contradictions that silently blaze through the walls and voids of a home. Roosted upon the Jubilee Hills, a neighbourhood in Hyderabad, illustrious for its affluent dwellers, the clues of contradiction at this cove for a family of four are built with blocks of conscious traditionality and accepted modernity. And if you’ve stumbled upon the current buzzword of ‘quiet luxury’ that the internet seers have been reciting off late, you’ll find that this nest in the city of Nizams is a visual meditation of the very concept punched with collectibles at every step.

Calculatedly cosy but not quite. Generously grand but not quite. Such design manoeuvres took charge of this stately abode, driven by Sona Reddy, Principal Designer and Founder of her onymous firm Sona Reddy Studio. The entrance opens up to a formal living area conjoined with the informal living area. A dining corner sits indepndently, linking the ground to the first level. Common zones like gallery-esque corridors, lounge and in- house theatre are functionally sectioned from the multiple private boudouirs of the parents, daughters and guests on the top floor, all laid out in a way that isn’t too overwhelming visually.

Sona Reddy
Featuring a wall art by Senaka Senanayake, the living room has a side table by West Elm, sofas by Moroso, a centre table by Case Goods, a rug from Jaipur Rugs and upholstered easy armchairs from Phantom Hands. This welcoming space is bejewelled with a stretched fabric light from Zeppelin by Flos; FACING PAGE On the ceiling are customised wooden panels by Ramesh Gorjala that depict the Mahabharata The angel statue by Pooranawalla which sits atop a pink sandstone is custom designed by Sona Reddy Studio; Photography by Pankaj Anand


Donning ceramic artworks on the wall by Vinod Daroz, the living room is brought to life with a blue sofa by BoConcept and an inlay centre table alongside marble columns, both custom designed by Sona Reddy Studio. A stone side table by The KOY Store, chairs by Ek Design and carpets from Jaipur Rugs accompany the ceilinglight installations by Arjun Rathi; Photography by Pankaj Anand


Sona Reddy
Resting on the table top designed by Sona Reddy Studio, the antique bowl commands attention. The inviting chairs from Phantom Hands, and lighting installations by Paul Matter sets the mood for a perfect family dinner. The base of the dining table is by Viya Homes; Photography by Pankaj Anand

But what’s a triumph without challenges — this residence’s story perhaps transpired from the deepest abyss of Sona’s aspirations, who was eight months pregnant with her second child at the time. Scripted as an Indian modern setting, a barrage of furniture, decor and art are assembled from diverse choreographies of India. In traditional compositions, it’s the colours that bring out a certain emphasis. Hence, on Sona’s canvas, the shades were sober, almost reticent. “The clients were very particular that they didn’t want an overly ethnic house, so we carefully picked one or two ethnic pieces per the space and kept the rest of the setting up to date.” The porch unmoors to a floor dressed up in cool grey kota stone that runs into a feather-hued formal living area, as if witnessed through a rose-tinted glass. Eccentric but elegant, a stretched fabric chandelier dangles from above, looking out to all directions and corners.

Sona Reddy
Bringing a part of nature within this magnificent guest bedroom is a wall panel by Kalakaari Haath. The bed is by DeMuro Das, the candle stand is by Sarita Handa, the lights are from Hatsu and the jute bag and the table are from Kishkinda. Sona Reddy Studio has designed the green side table; Photography by Pankaj Anand

A rousing labyrinth of art, artists and their perceptive handworks, the home surrenders itself to the beauty of raw and rarity — seen first at the corridor’s ceiling, animated with hand carved and painted wooden panels by Ramesh Gorjala, essaying the chronicles of Mahabharata. Second, possibly an influence of the family’s hometown, one of the wood-panelled canopies is embroidered with thousands of parijat flowers, mizzling a sense of nostalgia with it. Decor by decor, detail by detail, footsteps soon reach the living room that swoons in the outpour of natural light, offset with the dining section cradling a 13ft long wooden table on a base from Viya Home. It silently converses with the floor above, bridged with an industrial-style custom Paul Matter lighting that drops right above the table along with the grooved tadelakt stairway sketched in sharp, clean lines. The navigation to the first floor bares open the moodboards of the four bedrooms, a snuggly lounge and a 17ft long wooden bookshelf by a wall. Leaving the unassuming, concrete imprints behind, the bathrooms pose yet another paradox, a conspicuous departure from the sober mood of the home. These spaces of privacy and solitude assume a rather adventurous character in lively colours, textures and materials. Think, jewel green, lustrous blacks, red travertine, stone and copper tones.

This powder bathroom with its jewel green tiles from Pecchioli is a stunner in its own right. The basin and taps are from Gessi and decor is by Sarita Handa; Photography by Pankaj Anand

Sculpting statuesque pillars across the space was a challenge of sorts as well, says Sona. “We love cosy spaces. This was our true test because it’s the contrary. We introduced a lot of wood and subtle colours to balance the exposed concrete and worked with lighting designers to create light installations that would tie the ceilings and the heights. However, that’s not all. A home that flips open a new sentiment at every page like a long, rested weekend read, this present-day archive of modern antiquities treads beyond the expected to accommodate entertainment, home theatre and bar area, all of which flow onto a terrace with an infinity pool in its lap with recurring vista frames of the city’s splendour outside.

You may also like: Cabin home in Bengaluru by Taliesyn redefines the pleasures of simple living with its earthy tones