The home in Ahmedabad is designed for two girls, 3 and 9 respectively, as per their fancies and to appeal to their sensitivities.
Images: Umang Shah
Meethi-Mishti nu Mati Ghar
Area: 440 sq m
Location: Ahmedabad, Gujarat
Room: This house has a parent’s bedroom, a children’s bedroom and a guest bedroom. A large living room with a porch opening towards the garden, kitchen and dining room.
Architect: Naman Shah
Firm: SferaBlu, Naman Shah Architects
The architect for this home decided to go eco-friendly by focusing on local materials and techniques, upcycling, recycling and ensuring a minimal carbon footprint. Now, this earth has been on-site forever. It has endured the test of time. So it just made sense that this very earth becomes the house! One that uses only 6-8% of cement usually needed for normal construction. Bringing the same idea into mainstream architecture, the team built structural walls for the house by ramming earth excavated from the site itself. And to add a fun element, like patterns seen in layered sand art, different natural oxides are used to create layered fluid patterns in the large monolith. The girls’ stone and shell collections, were also added to the walls to preserve their fond memories.
The girls asked if Naman can create a ceiling that changes. So he decided to have a sloping glass for the living room ceiling. A dynamic ceiling, one that changes with the weather. Gaze and fantasize about patterns in the clouds, experience the rain which feels like a waterfall on your heads, stare at the moon and the stars all night! This cool north light brightens the house throughout the day, reducing electrical consumption.
The idea was to make it a playhouse. Since Ahmedabad gets hot in summer, the team decided to bring the playground inside the house. There is a slide going down from the first floor. There is a secret room where there are three different entries, but each is a mystery to find. The girls were happy to see a guillotine door, a sliding door that looks just like the partition, and a staircase that is a part of the bookshelf on the ground floor. The bridge on the first-floor ramps down to the girl’s room for an impromptu catwalk for the fashionista. Next was an acrobatic bed, suspended from the ceiling, with a rope ladder going up and plenty of climbing and jumping opportunities. And sketches from their drawing books became grills for windows, blackboards on partitions to bring out the Picasso in them.