Play of Light, Volumes, and Materials- A Home That Fits Wada Aesthetics in 660 sq. ft.

The Brick Box is to leave one’s mouth agape with its scrupulous design and creative consideration of the surroundings. From the undulating views of the landscape to the vibrant pulse of community life, every facet of its design resonates with a profound sense of belonging.

Play of Light, Volumes, and Materials- A Home That Fits Wada Aesthetics in 660 sq. ft.

Crafted amidst challenging terrain, the Brick Box embarks upon a journey to unravel the harmonious essence of regionalist Wada architecture nestled within the bustling heart of Kolhapur city. Enthroned within a labyrinthine neighborhood, where the pulse of urban vitality intertwines seamlessly with the vernacular charm of Wada heritage, the Brick Box stands as a humble tribute to the tapestry of its topographical, demographical, and geographical milieu.

In a tale woven with juxtapositions, where materials, aesthetics, and intricate details converge in a symphony of design, Architect Dhanesh Gandhi eloquently shares,

"Compared to other projects we get a lot of limitations… these limitations make us think a little deeper and bring up with some new ideas to design the house."

Within the confines of a modest 660 sq. ft. plot, the Brick Box emerges, its very appellation a testament to its essence—a longitudinal cuboid, its visage adorned with a resplendent brick tapestry adorning its frontal façade. Amidst myriad constraints, the design is compelled to delve deeper, birthing novel concepts that enliven its architectural canvas.

Fact file


Kolhapur, Maharashtra

Plot Area

660 sq. ft.

Built-up Area

2,500 sq. ft.

Number of rooms


Completion Year


Vaastu Compliance


A design in constraints

Nestled within the confines of a slender west-facing plot measuring a mere 16 ft. x  40 ft., the house finds itself embraced by common walls on either side—a testament to the spatial challenges it confronts. Yet, amidst these constraints, the design remains unwavering in its commitment to both form and function. Skillful composition of spaces into public, semi-public, and private realms ascending from the ground floor illustrates thoughtful zoning.

“One enters the site through thin metal slats which are placed right next to the stone wall at the entrance”, narrates Gandhi as he begins to walk us through the journey of The Brick Box

Additionally, the deliberate positioning of the staircase bifurcates the site into two halves, enabling each area to bask in natural light and ventilation from both anterior and posterior orientations. Skylights ingeniously integrated into the staircase channel fresh breeze, imbuing the brick-clad walls with a cascading luminosity that enhances the ambiance. Particularly, the west side receives meticulous attention, not only in terms of façade design in elevation but also in its capacity to temper harsh sunlight, the construction is put in place ensuring ample internal illumination through vertical ribbon windows flanking a dead brick wall placed centrally that balances the heat. A symphony of aesthetics and utility unfolds within, each space meticulously crafted to harmonize with the demands of modern living.

“Two dead walls on the North and the South sides gave birth to the skylights of the house...”,  Gandhi explains one of the sections of the house explaining the staircase.
Within limited space, The Brick Box cleverly employs its staircase to maximize light and airflow, ensuring every corner feels open and inviting Watch the complete video on Buildofy.

The contemporary transition spaces of a Wada

As one beholds the exterior visage of the Brick Box, a deceptive allure of modernity unfolds—a mesmerizing interplay of brick, concrete, and glass that captivates the eye. Yet, amidst this contemporary façade lies a subtle nod to tradition, embodied in a quaint Tulshi Katta adorned with a striking black basalt stone wall adorned with diya projections, reminiscent of Maharashtrian Wada heritage. This delicate homage to the past, echoing the pillars of Ambabai Mahalaxmi Temple nearby, welcomes visitors into an interactive verandah, where a nostalgic jhoola sways gently. Beneath their feet, a mosaic of mushroom stone flooring intricately crafted in rangoli-inspired patterns speaks to the enduring legacy of artisanal craftsmanship. Here, amidst the embrace of ancient Maharashtrian Wada charm, visitors find solace in the warmth of bygone eras.

“One enters the site through thin metal slats which are placed right next to the stone wall at the entrance”, narrates Gandhi as he begins to walk us through the journey of The Brick Box
One enters the house through contemporary metal slats, transitioning seamlessly into a classic Waada verandah Watch the complete video on Buildofy.

God is in the details

In the symphony of architectural design, the Brick Box adheres to the client's requirements and standard design of spaces carefully carving the layouts with consideration of light, ventilation, mobility, and function. Then what makes it stand out?

As its walls unfurl, a tapestry of meticulous attention to detail emerges, weaving ordinary spaces into extraordinary narratives. Whether through the artful selection of materials evoking regional sensibilities or the strategic embrace of minimalist principles to exude contemporary allure, every facet resonates with discerning craftsmanship. Even the humble dog-legged staircase is transformed into a canvas of artistic expression, its Kota stone steps etched with intricate rangoli-inspired borders, disrupting the seamless flow of modernity with a touch of tradition.

“So this client, Mr. Aswale, came up to us… he was very keen to design a house from us, which had some traditional values into it.” Gandhi expressed as delving into a discussion about the details in the house.

In the sanctum of an Indian Baithak, the temple Kalash metamorphoses into the legs of a sofa and further to the ends of the posters of the bed in the bedroom. The windows are integrated into this homogeneous flow by the use of solid wooden panels adorned with brass flourishes, ensuring a seamless integration of Wada aesthetics into every corner of this architectural gem.

“In this plan, we have played with this flooring pattern inspired from the temple design or if you see, the old Wada structures in Kolhapur,” Gandhi emphasizes the mosaic and etched floors.
From patterns of a brick wall to elements carved and etched in stone, the house astonishes the viewer with its scrupulous attention to details Watch the complete video on Buildofy.

Sunset by the lake

In the realm of architectural contemplation, site considerations unfold as a canvas of meticulous detail and thoughtful placement. Here, the design ethos is not confined to mere topographic contours and climatic nuances but it encompasses the very essence of the surroundings. With the eastward gaze bestowed upon the tranquil expanse of Rankala Lake and the westward vista overlooking the storied Ambabai Mahalaxmi Temple, the dwelling gracefully integrates terraces within its voluminous embrace to behold these panoramas. The house invites inhabitants to partake in a visual symphony of nature's splendor. Upon the third floor, a terrace adjoining the bedroom beckons towards the temple, its tranquility enhanced by the gentle gaze of the balcony overlooking it from above. Stretching towards the western horizon, another terrace unveils the ethereal beauty of sunset hues reflected upon the lake, ensconced amidst distant mountain peaks. Echoing the timeless elegance of rangoli artistry, the terrace floor bears tile patterns expressing continuity in design, seamlessly merging with Kota stone seating further—a sanctuary for quiet contemplation over a cup of tea. Adorned by a planter extending from the railing, this vista is framed with exquisite elegance. Adding to the narrative, a small square window with a centrally pivoted solid panel lends an air of enchantment to this architectural masterpiece.

“We designed them intentionally to capture the views of the temple and the lake,” explains Gandhi, telling us about the need for terraces in the design.
The house pays homage to the surrounding geographical wonders with the design and placement of its terraces. Watch the complete video on Buildofy.

In the tapestry of architectural brilliance, the Brick Box emerges as a timeless masterpiece, where tradition intertwines with innovation to craft a sanctuary of sublime beauty and profound meaning.

Experience the contemporary allure of the warmth of a Wada through our detailed walkthroughs, drawings, and photographs at Buildofy. While there, don’t miss out on the other impressive contemporary homes in Maharashtra and across India.