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The Wood House, Kolhapur: Sun-warmed, Airy Home designed by Ar. Sunil Patil

Posted by
on March 05, 2019 at 01:32 PM

© Courtesy of Sanjay Chowgule, Sunil Patil and Associates

Continuing in the series of showcasing the talent and penchant for aesthetic articulation that Indian architects, designers and artists possess and nurture in abundance, we present a residential design project by Ar. Sunil Patil. An internationally acclaimed architect, Sunil Patil has carved out a special niche for himself in the Kolhapur-Pune architectural scene after graduating from architectural school at Kolhapur and starting his own practice in 1994. This practice, which he shares with his engineer brother, has only grown from strength to strength in these 25 years and operates from two offices, one at Kolhapur and another at Pune, today. Sunil Patil and Associates have a wide range of residential, commercial, corporate interiors and public utility building design projects underway, across the country.

The Wood House, designed and executed by Sunil Patil and Associates, exemplifies the architect's ability to infuse a special spatial quality into a modest home in Kolhapur.

True to its name, the Wood House flaunts a delectable wooden cladding on a well-calibrated number of surfaces among the other white painted ones, and also in the tree that stands in the centre of the front of the façade. Just as its leafy branches radiate from its thick woody bark, the white-surfaced boxes seem to branch out from the tall central wood-clad one. Thus established is a resonating poetry in the massing of the facade, accessorised by steel pergolas on the porch and terraces.

© Courtesy of Sanjay Chowgule, SPA

The notable feature about this façade that one needs to be told is the indigenous history of the cladding material used. The wooden cladding on the exterior has been achieved through the material’s customised production for SPA using bamboo pulp. Once successfully used and tested, this panel section has been marketed as ‘BIOS SPA Natural Wooden Cladding’.

© Courtesy of Sanjay Chowgule, SPA

The external wooden boxes pierce through the white walls into the interior of this home to mark their warm, woody presence inside as well. The 315 sq m of built area is spread out on two levels and a basement accommodates a store room and parking for three cars. As one enters through the main door, a modest lobby space leads to a voluminous living room with its ceiling at double floor height. This explosion of the volume is accentuated by a super-large double height glazed surface with French windows that allow one into the abutting garden.

© Courtesy of Sanjay Chowgule, SPA

As the end of the glazed surface meets the double height wood clad wall under a sweeping sky-light, the double level volume continues into the dining area located at diagonal access. It is interrupted only by the first-floor bridge cutting overhead through the space. The garden abutting the dining room windows ensures an abundant cross current of breeze in partnership with the living room windows, and both these along with the sky-light ensure ample day-lighting through all seasons. These features contribute to making the house considerably energy efficient. Also, visual connections weave themselves through the horizontal and vertical planes of the entire home. 

© Courtesy of Sanjay Chowgule, SPA

A cosy kitchen, supplemented by a roomy pantry and store room, face the dining area over a Neolith solid surface breakfast counter. The kitchen décor uses dark brown Neolith Techlam for the walls and thick Caesar stone for the counter. In the corner between the kitchen and the wood clad bedroom block is a one-of-its-kind Pooja room which is sky-lit and resides in a double height volume. Its walls are stone clad and it’s partitioned by a white CNC cut jali.

© Courtesy of Sanjay Chowgule, SPA
© Courtesy of Sanjay Chowgule, SPA

The minimally furnished bedroom is made resplendent by an artist’s mural – a large vibrant orange flower in full bloom over the grey surface of the wall and the subtly camouflaged washroom door. One can walk out of the bedroom as well as the living room onto the garden, where an Indonesian Buddha statue sits against a green wall and presides over a bubbling natural stream flowing through the landscape.

© Courtesy of Sanjay Chowgule, SPA
© Courtesy of Sanjay Chowgule, SPA

Upstairs, the family room fronted by the terrace under a pergola is the first occurrence upon entry. After this, the long bridge which looks over its glass balustrade onto the living and dining areas, leads to the two aptly segregated bedrooms.

© Courtesy of Sanjay Chowgule, SPA
© Courtesy of Sanjay Chowgule, SPA

The wood metaphor is seen emphasised yet again by an artistic metalwork screen which picturises a framed tree rising from the ground floor through to the ceiling of the upper floor as it screens the staircase from other areas. It is also articulated through a tree-shaped cut out of white painted MDF board framed against a grey background in the living room. It stands highlighted in the rustically styled wooden dining table as well.

A neutral colour palette of grey ceramic flooring and white painted walls paired with warm and natural wood tones creates the perfect backdrop to offset the vibrant upholstery of the sofas. Greens mark their presence in the interiors in interesting patches fronting the wood-clad wall in the living room or as a little tree gracing the open-to-sky court in the bathroom. 

© Courtesy of Sanjay Chowgule, SPA

To sum it up, natural outdoor elements have been knitted into the fabric of the elegant home interiors so subtly and yet so abundantly, making the Wood House an ideal serving of indoor and outdoor joys of living.

© Courtesy of Sanjay Chowgule, SPA

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