This Home in Maharashtra is: Of the Earth, By the Earth, For the Earth

Sustainability has peaked since climate change symptoms are visible to the populaces. Thus, this home with its ingenious techniques and natural décor, sitting amidst a lush setting, becomes a crusader for ‘saving the planet’.

This Home in Maharashtra is: Of the Earth, By the Earth, For the Earth

Claiming the entirety of land and soil around stands a home that seems to materialize from the earth quite literally, transpiring into a phoenix in the process. Gracefully placed, on a gradient site in the Wine Capital of India; Nashik is this down-to-earth home that dwells on the vestiges of time. From its conception, the architects of Design Jatra nurtured the abode in the practices and ideologies of the firm. The uprising of walls from the earth, and décor by the assets collected from nature, this home poses as a custodian for sustainability.

“Primarily this house is about making these (familial) bonds, making these relationships with the context, with oneself, with the materials, with each other… with the village,” narrates architect Shardul Patil of Design Jatra.
The home earned a moniker for its sustainability but it's more than that; a cozy haven where familial bonds are strengthened. Watch the complete video on Buildofy.



Nashik, Maharashtra

Plot Area

2 Acres

Built-up Area

3,100 sq. ft.

Number of Rooms


Completion Year


Vaastu Compliance



“It is named Terra by the clients… They both are doctors and ardent practitioners of sustainability,” Shardul clues us, about the idea of stockpiling the home from the earth. Bowing to the Anjaneri hills and lounging in the cool waft of the upper Vaitarna lake; all the while reaching down to them, is a plot haloed by a moist deciduous forest. Amidst this orchestrated sorcery of nature, a potion with equal parts eco-consciousness and ingenuity was stirred to devise Terra. “We, most naturally decided to build here, where the slope was gentler and there was less vegetation,” Shardul explains the process of actually cherry-picking the venue for this earthy party. On-site, a sonorous spring flows down to unite with its doxy; the lake, while insinuating the breezes with a cooling effect. “The village Zarwad gets a lot of very harsh monsoon winds… the place where the house is... is completely shaded by that wind,” Shardul further adds about the preserved soul of the vegetation around.

This abode is set in a lush location; amidst upper Vaitarna Lake, Anjaneri hills, and a moist deciduous forest. Watch the complete video on Buildofy.


A voluptuous path was conveniently carved, evading the existing vegetation to reach the citadel. A parley convenes, to disclose a duet of entries to the inner sanctum of Terra, that softly reminds one of the childhood homes. “This way is the wheelchair entry,” explains Shardul remembering the caveat of the clients for an all-embracing home. On the other side, sauntering up a hummock, with gaze affixed on the tranquil lake and the majestic hill, a series of steps carry one to nirvana, revealing a substitute entry.

In an effort to be all-inclusive, this residence features a separate wheel chair entry. To watch the complete home documentary, click here.

Upon treading the trudge, a verandah grabs a serving of visuals from the stew pot of lush scenery that is simmered for the home. This perfidious verandah supervised by a fragment of the sloping roof, correspondingly becomes a dining area for sharing meals and heartfelt conversations. It is defended by two steadfast accomplices; in the guise of low-level platforms, which are a perfect venue for slow evenings spent gawking at the segueing scenery.

The other entry takes one through the scenic backdrop that the house is set in. To watch the complete home documentary, click here.


“So basically, the house plan was divided into three parts,” elucidates Shardul regarding the unembellished design of the home. Turning one’s back to the audience, they enter the central core of the stoically serene abode. This central core entertains a kitchen cum living space that features a few cabinetries crafted from wood and wicker to impart a sense of warmth to the space. Paradoxically, the living area rides the minimalistic wagon with in-built seating spaces and a colonial-style armchair. Mitigating the dearth of confidentiality, this space confides with the natural surroundings when the wooden framed doors and windows are unlocked. This tableau is overlooked by rafters that lend a hand to the archaic roof above.

A minimally decorated kitchen cum multipurpose forms the core of the dwelling. Visit Buildofy for the video of the complete project walkthrough.

Further, a master bedroom almost reaches out to the forest precipitously terminating the trail before hopping over the natural stream, recalling its boundaries. “When we designed this (master bedroom) we decided that we will not go beyond the stream because that was the most ecologically sensitive point,” validates Shardul. The bedroom becomes an Elysian harbour that finds an intervention with golden specks and the susurrus of the stream that glides towards its larger life. “The bedroom inspires a lot of activities which are very private and very intimate to these guys (the owners),” he adds; on the verandah and a bay window opposite the bed that is fanatical about the room. This verandah is used for practicing the magic of yoga, with natural neighbours eyeing every move. In this room, an attached bathroom sunbathes in the open and further dives into a plunge pool to cool off.

The master bedroom looks out onto the moist deciduous forest and also hides behind its dense foliage. Visit Buildofy for the video of the complete project walkthrough.

A casted-out bedroom coalesces with an attached L-shaped verandah to transpire into a watchtower that keeps tabs on its visitors. Shardul narrates, “The landscaped area here (flanking the verandah) is like a large platform where a lot of people visit, you can interact with them” while dipping one’s feet in the frosty water of the lily pond. The entire plan is topped with an attic that makes the home ambiguous while breaching the notion of privacy. This attic with its windows open, acquiesces to uninterrupted visual connect, paired with an ad-free auditory connection. “The idea of privacy is distorted here because the house is not meant for that. The house is meant to be with people, the house is meant to be with nature, the house is meant to be bonded with each other,” justifies Shardul.

The other bedroom looks out onto the manicured landscape that also guards the entry. Watch the complete video on Buildofy.


“The vault came due to the virtue of the slope because the slope was so steep, that we had a space below our verandah to have this vault,” explains Shardul. This querencia space, where one halts staring at the auburn hues of the bricks lining its periphery, entices one to transport them to the warm netherworld. The vault is a perfect cozy spot for hosting barbeque evenings and elaborate soirées.

The vault below the verandah becomes a view point to watch the serene lake and majestic hills. To watch the complete home documentary, click here.

The retention walls in the backyard manage to control the narrative of the water that bullies its way into the home. “The upper Vaitarna dam when it was built, these (local) masons got trained in very good stonework,” Shardul adds. A waft of manure infiltrates one’s nostrils and incarnates the feeling of being in vintage familial homes playing hopscotch on the smooth cow dung floor.  The cob walls hijack every corner in the abode, “Cob walls are such a beautiful element and such an opportunity to create in-built furniture … and this element of having really thick walls is like just a hug around you all the time,” insinuates Shardul. At one spot, a cob wall bulks to four feet, to gorge on the entire home’s services per the site’s natural terrain, it shelters a cryptic teleportation apparatus to transport one to the attic beyond.

Cob walls and random rubble masonry walls are used alternatingly as a display of eco-consciousness Visit Buildofy for the video of the complete project walkthrough.

The landscape plagiarizes the temperament of a selfless guardian, creating a ligature between the site’s functionality and aesthetics. A permaculture belt in the rear end ladders the eco-consciousness personality of the home with a herculean retained forest and greenery becoming its accomplices. “…And the grey water treatment system, everything is an element of landscape and everything adds to the visuals of the site so that was the intention of having this kind of landscape,” confides Shardul. Into the bargain the abode’s décor too is leased from the surroundings; from the curtain rods down to the display smithereens.

The landscape on site is a mix of retaining the existing and a series of manufactured petite green pockets. Watch the complete video on Buildofy.

Consequently, Terra expands one’s lexicon of sustainability from austere materials to rendezvous with ravishing moments masked by the convenience of design elements. This residence with its lakeshore location is the spoils of a connoisseur not only visually but also experientially. In all, it conspires with its iridescent surroundings to become a humble abode, encountering the simplicity and changing character of nature during the affair.

While there, don’t miss out on the other impressive contemporary homes in Maharashtra and across India. Visit Buildofy for the video of the complete project walkthrough.