Take inspiration from architect Ashish Kesurvala’s environmentally conscious Ahmedabad abode

JAN 8, 2019 | By Ashish R Kesurvala
A neutral colour palette offsets the rustic look of the steel frames used in the living room; Photographs by Monika Sathe
The adjoining bath features a concrete wall with shuttered planks; Photographs by Monika Sathe
This wood and concrete staircase is conceptualised by Kesurvala and has a unique “graph” railing; Photographs by Monika Sathe
The dining room has a solid wood table, leather-finished chairs, and a timber and brass cabinet from China; Photographs by Monika Sathe
Artworks depicting insects, sourced from BoConcept, line the right wall; Photographs by Monika Sathe
A soothing and minimalist grey palette dominates the bedroom; Photographs by Monika Sathe

When I design a home, the surrounding natural environment is always my first priority. I used the same approach while planning this 7,000 sq ft residential project in a small gated community in Ahmedabad, nestled among dense neem trees.

The simple plan starts with a long central passageway flanked by rooms on either side on both levels, diverging into different pockets of open courts. As each room faces either north or south, they’re accustomed to fresh air and warm indirect light, so temperatures stay steady throughout the day.

On the ground floor is a guest bedroom, kitchen, dining space and living area with a 14ft-high wood ceiling, three glass walls and an extended deck.

The sparsely designed living room opens out on the deck; Photographs by Monika Sathe

The living room was quite a challenge to design—we had to develop a steel frame to make it as visually light as possible. The frame is almost invisible and the roof extends 15ft to the outside deck…all this would have been impossible to achieve in concrete or brick.

Raw concrete finish on the interior walls lends a refreshingly unique character; Photographs by Monika Sathe

Each of the bedrooms on the first level feature dressing corners and washrooms with a skylight and niche for planters below. I always provide one-of-a-kind staircases in every home, including the two we built here. One is in concrete and wood, with a “graph” railing, while the other is a metal spiral that leads to the terrace.

This one-of-a-kind metal spiral staircase leads to the terrace; Photographs by Monika Sathe

We’re strictly minimalist in our meticulous design approach and pay more attention to the overall structure and its natural environs. Therefore, the material palette is subtle, with a consciously restrained use of marble, wood, glass, concrete and painted walls. The raw concrete looks envelopes the outer facade and continues inside, lending the house a refreshingly unique character.