Merging Rooted Indian Heritage and a Contemporary Guesthouse | Studio Skapa Architects

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Studio Skapa Architects transforms a derelict Bangalore penthouse into a contemporary guesthouse immersed in Tropical Modernism, merging rooted Indian heritage and a contemporary persona into one. The thresholds amidst the past and present blur away with abandon, tipping its hat to the reimagined union amidst traditions and contemporary sensibilities. The Heritage Sojourn Home rests in a state of serenity, nestled within a gated community in Whitefield, Bangalore.

Merging Rooted Indian Heritage and a Contemporary Guesthouse | Studio Skapa Architects

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A statement wall installation by Bamboopecker frames the living, created wholly in woven bamboo that celebrates the various natural tints of the material,  positioned snugly amidst a pair of brass and glass wall lights. In addition, a minimalist prayer nook has been conceptualised in a quiet corner consisting of a Tanjore painting, a distressed wall embellishment, and a timeless brass lamp sourced in Pondicherry.    

 

The layout unfurls into a light-filled open floor plan living cum dining space, lending its canvas as the communal nucleus of the residence. The custom terrazzo flooring cast-in-situ by Bharat Floorings witnessed a meticulous and finessed approach. The brass inlay patterns were laid into position before the flooring matrix could be cast over it. The flooring pattern commences at the entrance and flows uninterruptedly into the home’s public spaces, binding the areas with its cohesive visual weave. Swathed in a melange of summery soft furnishings, whites, greys, ubiquitous doses of teakwood, and indoor greens, the living space reminisces vintage allure that seeped through the crevices of time! 

The sofa and armchairs were refurbished to their former glory, while the pentagonal-top end tables and retro-chic pivoting magazine stand were sourced from the artisanal furniture-dotted boutiques of Pondicherry. “The central coffee table was a serendipitous find which we acquired in the form of a raw log of wood with no preconceived purpose in mind! While piecing the space together, we were inspired to adapt it as a piece of unadorned furniture, layered only with protective polish while its original hollows were left untamed,” she elaborates.

The capacious kitchen dons a bright mien with its subtle yet impactful interplay of hues and finishes. The exposed concrete floors by Super Surfaces carry forth through the kitchen, only to be interjected by a whiff of colour in the form of a rustic jade hue adorning the backsplash tiles. The function of storage and circulation is further enhanced herein with a central cooking island, creating an interactive layout within. The white-hued cabinetry establishes a sense of expanse, layered with rattan-clad millwork fronts and deep wooden tones through the open shelving systems. The matte gold hardware ushers in quiet elegance into the kitchen.

A moment held still in the clasp of tradition and Indian craftsmanship; the inviting dining area remains steadfastly grounded in its identity. A live-edge wood dining table commands the space, accompanied by a set of six umber teak and beige linen-upholstered chairs. A rattan-faced credenza borders the zone, revelling in the delicate patterned weaves while a distressed engraved wood Buddha mural rests above it.

A sizeable patina-doused mythical Garuda sculpture perches over the credenza, emphasising the omnipresence of history within the home’s walls. A banana fibre wall lamp by The Purple Turtles stretches over the length of the nook, imbuing the latter with a nature-inspired essence.

The connective spine of the residence, the staircase is a transformation that the studio felt was integral to the home’s design narrative. The erstwhile staircase connecting the levels was visually bulky, made entirely in glossy black granite, which rendered the stairwell with a dark and stunted appearance.

We gutted the same out and reimagined the staircase as an architectural feature in tandem with the overruling design sensibility and materials underscoring the guesthouse. This transformation was a game-changer,” explains the Principal Architect.

The bedrooms spread across The Heritage Sojourn Home have been designed with a penchant for a defining colour that grounds it while staying devoted to the palpable tapestry of design that pulses through the home!

Decadent yet minimalist, the ensuite master bedroom is a space steeped in character and offers an ingenious take on raw materiality. “The client’s brief dictated the desire to create a dark, cozy, and sanctuary-sequel space. The sheer volume of the room and its lofty sloping ceilings brewed architectural drama that was untapped potential awaiting exploration! We experimented across its surfaces, the walls, floors, and ceilings in tow; manifesting as focal elements that dabble in simple materials seen in an unconventional light,” adds Charita.

On the ground level, the guest bedroom is a vision in ochre. Referencing historical bungalows and quaint residences characteristically earmarked by tinted oxide floors. The flooring here is a modern interpretation of the same. Micro-topped by Super Surfaces in a warm ochre hue, the spacious guest bedroom comprises a resting space, a study nook, and a walk-in closet created by introducing a partition wall to better utilize the layout.

In a tête-à-tête with tones of green, the second guest bedroom is a coalition of quiet charm and comfort set apart with its pale green micro-topped flooring. This bedroom welcomes light into its colossal volume crowned by veneer-clad rafters along the sloped roofs.  The bespoke headboard artistically conceptualizes details, combining utility and art. Antique-finish pastel green tiles from a metallic tin series were collated against a teak base. This created the pièce de resistance in the form of the headboard flanked by a duo of forest green nightstands framing the resting space. The all-embracing greens contrast stimulatingly with a deep scarlet hue worn by the printed curtains. The bathroom has been finished in a subtle sage green patterned tile and raw Kota stone tiles over the walls.

Driven by the intention of keeping its entirety light and bright, the third guest bedroom is one that witnesses the coming together of fresh green tones and white. An in-situ terrazzo flooring created by Bharat Floorings experiments with a white base playfully bespeckled with green glass chips. The colour further makes a cameo as a textured green stucco accent wall to draw upon the colour of the glass chips cast in the flooring.

A live-edge headboard with cantilevered nightstands by Freedom Tree anchors the bed, above which a rattan and teak light by Olie Lighting has been placed.

The Heritage Sojourn Home chronicles the architectural appeal of the South, fleeting between the experiences of a revitalizing getaway and a familiar home that tugs at the strings of nostalgia! “I remember working in Sri Lanka in the primitive years of my career and finding myself hopelessly in awe of Tropical Modernism as a design style! Serendipitously, I feel like I have drawn inspiration from memory, conjuring a space that is evocative of my time and learnings from the island country. The learning curve with this home for us as a studio has been colossal; our gratitude stems from having such trusting clients and collaborators who have breathed new life into this special home,” concludes the Architect.

Rundown and dilapidated until a few months ago, the space now is an oasis of comfort, peppered with greens and nooks to lounge. A canopy composed of glass and metal rafters was erected to shelter the area while optimising the persistent presence of light from morning to dusk. The length of the balcony was sub-sectioned into various zones, hosting a sprightly, yellow-immersed lounge on one end and woven monochrome cane garden chairs and a table by Beruru. The flooring is a composite of amber Jaisalmer stone with printed geometric tiles in sections, mimicking embedded rugs.

Fact File

Design by: Studio Skapa Architects

Project Name: The Heritage Sojourn Home

Location: Bangalore, Karnataka

Project Type: Corporate Guesthouse

Project Size: 3621 Sq.ft

Year Built: 2022

Principal Architect: Charita Kishore Rupa

Text Credit: Lavanya Chopra

Photography Courtesy: Yash R Jain  

Firm’s Instagram Link: Studio Skapa Architects

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