A minimal home with a split courtyard - Sidhu Residence by Anudeep Bhandari & Associates
Located in the agricultural town of Shahabad, Sidhu Residence stands out for its distinct modern yet raw design.
A courtyard house is always visualized with a central open space and the adjoining living spaces spilling out into the central courtyard. This is where the Sidhu residence stands out. A wide gate with dense hedges on both sides opens to showcase a series of steps leading one into a house that seems to be floating over the water. Landscape elements at different levels soften the raw exposed brick and zinc on the exterior facade.
Architect Anudeep Bhandari, principal architect at Anudeep Bhandari & Associates walks us through his interpretation of a courtyard house and how it comes to life in this modern suburban home.
"Architecture progresses itself if things are kept simple". This core ideology helped him come up with a design that perfectly caters to the need of the clients.
Ar. Anudeep has perfectly captured the essence of traditional courtyard houses and customized it to the needs and wants of his clients. Splitting the courtyard into two separate entities, gave him the opportunity to open up every living space to the outdoors practically merging them with the outdoors. This not just helps maintain the microclimate of the house but also becomes an inviting space to unwind and relax amidst the landscape.
An emerging suburb
The Sidhu Residence, located in Shahabad, a well-laid-out suburb 180 km from Delhi catches the eye of every passerby for its unique design. A combination of red and grey with pops of green interspersed throughout, the house becomes a landmark of the neighborhood. The architect has caught the essence of the clients' vision in their perfect small house designed for their family of four. Clean and minimalistic, the design uniquely addresses all the requirements that the clients wished. Surrounded by lush greenery and indigenous landscape elements all around the house, the design attempts to bring nature inside and create a homogenous space.
A distinct design layout
The architect has divided the house distinctively into social and semi-social areas thus providing privacy through and through. A series of floating entrance steps made from dark grey laminam on the front porch takes you inside the house. The social areas include a living room, dining area, and a deck along with a private master bedroom on the ground floor, whereas the other bedrooms are placed on the first floor along with a home theater. The architect has cleverly designed the living room and master bedroom placed towards the front of the house to be two floating masses jutting out of the main structure. The space below these floating masses has a water feature that makes people believe the house is actually floating in water! The home theater on the first floor can also be found by its unique exterior feature of a sloping vertical mass standing out on the elevation of the house. A combination of red brick and grey zinc sheets clad on the whole façade complement each other to give the house an Indian touch.
A courtyard with a twist has been designed to open up multiple indoor spaces to nature. The architect split the courtyard into two and placed one part between the entrance foyer and the floating master bedroom and the other was placed in the rear next to the staircase. A full-height glass fenestration running along the staircase gives soothing views of the rear courtyard. A floating deck is designed over it where the couple can enjoy a hot cup of chai in the evenings. The landscape in the frontcourt frames the windows of the master bedroom projecting out in the front creating a serene aura for one to enjoy after a busy day. The indigenous Maulsari tree sits on the other side of the frame shading the interiors and spreading its aroma into the house. A Conocarpus hedge lines the edge of the site adding to the privacy of the house.
The house is an amalgamation of simplicity and earthiness. All the spaces have glimpses of various artworks highlighting the mood of that space. Be it the abstract canvas painting towering a tan leather sofa in the living room or a collage of hand-painted plates against ice-blue walls in the bedroom, multiple artworks help uplift the experience of every room. Another highlight of the bedroom is the famous sketch painting of Chapelle Notre Dame du Haut de Ronchamp. The brick from the exteriors travels inside onto the interior walls of the house, continuing the earthiness of the design. Stone cladding against beige flooring and white plaster becomes a backdrop for the pure wooden staircase making it a focal point of the house. Multiple combinations of fabric colors and textures enhance the tactile journey of the residents from space to space making it even more experiential.
The past in the present
The architect's primary objective was to combine old-world architecture charm with contemporary design elements. He was able to implement this by blending contrasting elements such as old-time brick with the latest zinc sheets. Another approach where he expresses his ideas is by repurposing the traditional concept of bi-partite windows with the inclusion of glass to create a new version altogether. The same approach is seen in the unconventional planning of the house, by dividing the traditional courtyard into two modern ones in the front and rear. The combination of traditional handmade paintings and artwork against very modern colors and contemporary furniture pieces to enhance the interiors and lastly, a very indigenous Maulsari tree shading the protruding floating master bedroom are really the result of his sheer passion for an innovative architectural design.
The Sidhu Residence is a traditional house in the disguise of a contemporary design. It showcases the modern trends of technological sophistication while sticking to its roots of design and choice of materials. At its core, the house is just a mirror of a generation getting adapted to modern times.
The architect mentions that "the soul of architecture lies in planning and that should be paramount", and that is exactly what can be seen in this residence.
To watch the full video of Sidhu Residence and access a detailed E-Book of the project, visit here.
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