- Interior Design: Vinay Mavinakere, Geeth Gopinath, A Shakthivel
- Landscape Design: Vinay Mavinakere, Geeth Gopinath
- Site Engineer: Konda Reddy
- City: Bangalore
- Country: India
Text description provided by the architects. Unnati - The Urban Courtyard House is a special project designed for a client who had been following our work for a few years. Apart from the program and a few indicators for sizes of spaces (generous but as much as possible - more garden and less house), we were given carte blanche to experiment and create a unique design.
Within the 4000 square feet plot, the plan resolved to a ground coverage of 60% of the built area, leaving out space for a generous courtyard and larger than usual setbacks. Riffing off the traditional Indian courtyard house pattern which features a central courtyard, the house has an off-centered courtyard surrounded by rooms at varying levels. The play of levels creates carefully proportioned volumes that enrich the experiential sequence through the house.
An intimate connection to the private courtyard from most rooms constitutes the introverted quality of the house, balancing the balconies and decks that connect it with the street life and verdant foliage outside. The north-facing deck at the front sits atop the parking slab and accommodates a powder room. This space is accessed from the living room through discreet steps that are integrated into the sofa design.
The formal expression of the house derives from the interior volumes, and the level differences are apparent from the outside, where the 14’ tall door and the 8’ high street-facing deck are seen together. An inclined RCC slab, clad with recycled natural teak wood runs across the front façade emphasizing the horizontality of the form. This is further highlighted through the gate design and the horizontal wooden slats included in the composition.
Perforated metal sheets at strategic junctions in the façade act as counterpoints, balancing the warmth and solidity of the wooden elements. A concrete surface finish used for some walls on the exterior is echoed in the interior, lending a rugged contrast to the fine finish of the white plastered walls, Italian marble floors, and natural wood. Skylights together with the ample fenestration bring light into the house with a dappled quality filtered through the lush foliage. The garden views from all the spaces within the house infuse a serenity reminiscent of traditional courtyard houses while accommodating a thoroughly contemporary and urban lifestyle pattern.