Sunday Sanctuary: Back to Basics

Pared back with minimal styling, this week’s Sanctuary is drawing back to the basics… Hidden away in Mumbai, India lies a space that beautifully entwines the lush, green surroundings into a breath-taking, timeless home. With a focus on architectural structure and minimal furnishings, the beauty lies in the smaller, yet not un-noticed details. The use of hardwood timber on […]

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Fungus used to build arching pavilion in Kerala

A group of Indian and Italian architects has built a pavilion in southwest India using mycelium – the fleshy part of a mushroom or other fungus – to demonstrate how the material could be used to create temporary venues for major events. Asif Rahman of Indian studio Beetles 3.3, and Giombattista Arredia and Mohamad Yassin of Italian architecture studio Yassin Arredia Design teamed

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India’s young architects must be taught to appreciate their design heritage, says Balkrishna Doshi

India is at risk of losing its architectural identity, because the country’s design schools aren’t teaching students to respect local heritage and traditions, according to architect Balkrishna Doshi. The Indian architect, who turns 90 this year, said that many of the country’s architects are too concerned with mimicking the aesthetics and practices of other countries, rather than learning from the

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Key projects by influential Indian architect Balkrishna Doshi

With Balkrishna Vithaldas Doshi set to deliver the Royal Academy’s annual architecture lecture this evening, here’s a look at four pivotal projects the architect built in Ahmedabad, captured by photographer Edmund Sumner. As one of India’s most influential 20th century architects, and an important collaborator of both Le Corbusier and Louis Kahn, Doshi has an impressive portfolio spanning over 70 years. Through the

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Rippling red brick facade shades house in Surat by Design Work Group

Design Work Group has completed a family home in the Indian port city of Surat, which features a gently undulating brick facade that offers shade from the sun. The building’s location at the intersection of two roads informed the architects’ decision to divide it into two contrasting zones – one encased in concrete and the other in brick.

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Pavilion-like house offers spectacular views of India’s Western Ghats mountains

Volcanic stone walls and sculptural skylights are among the features of this holiday home by Khosla Associates, which looks out over a picturesque mountain lake in southwest India. The retreat is located in the heart of the Western Ghats, a mountain range older than the Himalayas. The spectacular scenery takes centre stage in the building,

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New photographs offer a look inside a modernist theatre in Le Corbusier’s Chandigarh

Neelam Theatre, one of three cinemas built as part of Le Corbusier’s construction of Chandigarh, is revealed in these new images by British photographer Edmund Sumner. Built in the early 1950s, Neelam Theatre is located in Sector 17, the commercial district of the modernist city that was famously masterplanned by Le Corbusier in post-independence India. But the building was actually

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Samira Rathod’s Shadow House provides refuge from scorching Indian sun

A weathered steel roof slopes over the gravelled courtyard at the centre of this concrete house in western India, which architect Samira Rathod has designed to offer residents plenty of shade from the sun. The Shadow House is located in Alibaug, a coastal town located south of Mumbai in the Indian state of Maharashtra. Mumbai-based architect Samira Rathod wrapped the 5,000-square-foot residence

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Anahata’s pared-back house in western India features facade designed as “a piece of art”

The sculptural facade of this house in the Indian city of Belgaum comprises staggered blocks containing rooms that extend out from a central plant-filled courtyard. Padival House was designed by local studio Anahata for a young couple with two children, who wanted a modern home to sit on a site in a typical gridiron residential neighbourhood.

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Awadh Shilpgram is a crafts hub influenced by traditional Indian architecture

Architecture studio Archohm has completed a campus for promoting crafts in the Indian city of Lucknow, featuring a cluster of grass-roofed workshops and a spiralling shopping arcade (+ slideshow). Awadh Shilpgram was designed by Archohm to accommodate almost 200 shops dedicated to crafts from around the region and beyond, alongside craft courts for hosting workshops, an More

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Carlo Ratti building digitally connected retreat in the Himalayan mountains

Construction has started on a digitally connected co-living and co-working retreat in the Himalayas, designed by Italian architect Carlo Ratti. Carlo Ratti Associati has teamed up with Turin-based architect Michele Bonino on the Pankhasari Retreat, a remote getaway where guests will be able to live and work like they would in a city. Despite its position in a valley in India’s Darjeeling region – surrounded More

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Archohm completes wedge-shaped socialism museum in northern India

Architecture firm Archohm has completed a wedge-shaped museum in Lucknow dedicated to the late Indian independence activist Jayaprakash Narayan (+ slideshow). Named Jayaprakash Narayan Interpretation Centre, the building houses a series of exhibitions about the social reformer, best known for leading the opposition to prime minister Indira Gandhi following the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971. The structure features two triangular More

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Rohan Chavan’s public toilets aim to provide a safe socialising space for women

These public toilets by architect Rohan Chavan are built around an old tree in the Indian city Thane, and include a hot-pink sitting area where women can socialise (+ slideshow). The three-by-nine-metre toilet block by Mumbai-based Chavan is named The Light Box – Restroom for Women. It contains four female-only toilets arranged around the trunk of a tree, whose branches protrude through More

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Sameep Padora builds Buddhist Learning Centre in an Indian forest grove

Volcanic stone dust was used to build the walls of this Buddhist education and meditation centre, designed by Sameep Padora & Associates for a woodland clearing in rural India (photos by Edmund Sumner + slideshow). Sameep Padora’s architecture firm wanted to revive outdated building traditions in the construction of the Buddhist Learning Centre, also known as Jetavan, so chose More

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Le Corbusier’s Chandigarh government buildings captured in new images by Benjamin Hosking

World Heritage Corb: for the next instalment in our series on the 17 Le Corbusier buildings added to UNESCO’s World Heritage list, Australian photographer Benjamin Hosking shares new images of Capitol Complex in Chandigarh – the Indian city that gave the architect a chance to test his Modernist theories on a grand scale (+ slideshow). The Capitol Complex is made up of three concrete More

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Abraham John Architects transforms pump room into garden lounge for Mumbai film studio

This garden pavilion by Abraham John Architects provides a lounge for a film production studio in Mumbai, featuring a glazed ceiling and walls to offer views of a jackfruit tree (+ slideshow). The local studio converted a pump room above an underground water tank to create the lounge, which provides an additional meeting space for the company based in More

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House with stone walls built by Spasm Design around a sunken courtyard in India

This house in Malavli, India, features walls made from local Kotah stone and a glazed, subterranean courtyard (+ slideshow). Called Gomati, the house is located between Mumbai and Pune in the Indian state of Maharashtra. It was designed by Mumbai studio Spasm Design, which previously created another house in the region using concrete mixed with local basalt stone. An More

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Our 10 Favorite Ancient Indian Stepwells

Water source, meeting place, architectural wonder: The ancient Indian stepwell – a man-made, subterranean well also known as ‘vav’ or ‘baori’ – has been capturing the imagination of pilgrims and travelers for centuries.
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Sliding and spinning walls animate facade of house by Matharoo Associates

At the touch of a button, the chunky marble walls that surround this house in India divide up into spinning and sliding panels, revealing a more lightweight glass facade behind (photos by Edmund Sumner + slideshow). Designed by architects office Matharoo Associates, the house transforms from an “impregnable shell” into a glass pavilion, allowing residents to vary the amount of More

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Sanjay Puri uses weathering steel to create layered facade for The Crescent office block

Overlapping angled fins clad in pre-rusted steel extend from the front of this crescent-shaped office building in Surat, India, by Mumbai architect Sanjay Puri (+ slideshow). The Crescent was designed by Sanjay Puri Architects to house the offices of a local property developer. Situated on a small plot at the intersection of two roads, the building is conveniently More

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Penda combines stepwells with water mazes for Indian garden design

The design features of Indian stepwells and water mazes are combined in this proposal for a landscaped garden by architecture studio Penda (+ slideshow). Penda –  a studio with offices in Beijing and Vienna – will create the 8,000-square-metre garden for a residential complex in Hyderabad, India, which is also designed by the team and set to begin construction this More

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Reclaimed windows and doors form facades of Collage House by S+PS Architects

Old doors and windows, antique wooden columns and metal drainpipes give this house in Mumbai an aesthetic its architects claim is inspired by the ramshackle buildings found throughout the city (+ slideshow). Local studio S+PS Architects designed Collage House to accommodate four generations of the same family. It is located on top of a hill overlooking More

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Riverside house by Architecture Brio is partially embedded in a grassy hillock

This weekend residence by Architecture Brio is half-embedded in the bank of a river that winds its way through the foothills of the Western Ghats, a mountain range bordering India’s western coast (+ slideshow). Sitting just below the top of a hill, the 330-square-metre residence has a vegetated roof that disguises the bulk of the More

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Folding steel shutters reveal interior of BetweenSpaces’ Bangalore architecture studio

Steel shutters fold open to bring plenty of fresh air into this studio for Bangalore architecture firm BetweenSpaces, which is situated above the home of one of its founders (+ slideshow). The building is located on a north-facing plot in a densely urbanised district of the Indian city. It accommodates the offices of BetweenSpaces on More

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Work starts on David Chipperfield-designed museum beside the Taj Mahal

British architect David Chipperfield has unveiled his design for a museum in Agra, India, which is now under construction next to the Taj Mahal. Scheduled to open next year, the Mughal Museum is one of four new tourist attractions being built in the city. According to David Chipperfield Architects, it will accommodate 5,200 square metres of permanent More

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Indian pool house by 42mm Architecture boasts a concrete frame and a transparent middle

A thick loop of concrete forms the walls, flooring and roof of this pool house, completed by Indian firm 42mm Architecture in the garden of a New Delhi residence (+ slideshow). Described by 42mm Architecture as “a pebble in the grass”, the 400-square-metre building has a smooth concrete shell, but its front and rear walls More

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Skylit swimming pool forms the heart of Bangalore residence by Ochre

Rooms in this Bangalore house are arranged around a large indoor pool that occupies a double-height atrium below a glazed roof (+ slideshow). Named after its owner, Tyagi’s House was designed by local architectural firm Ochre for a leafy plot within the southern Indian city. The interior is dominated by the mosaic-lined pool, which is overlooked by internal balconies and […]

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Hornbill House by Biome Environmental Solutions faces out over an Indian tea plantation

This holiday chalet by Bangalore firm Biome Environmental Solutions has walls of stone and mud brick, and nestles into a hillside overlooking a tea and coffee plantation in southern India (+ slideshow). Hornbill House shelters below a tree in the grounds of the O’land plantation in Nilgiri, a district of Tamil Nadu. The foundations of the small […]

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Casa Rana is a colourful foster home in India for HIV-positive children

A bamboo screen surrounds the five colourful volumes that make up this foster home for 15 HIV-positive children in a village in India (+ slideshow). Named Casa Rana, the project is the result of a partnership between Italian non-profit architecture studio Made in Earth and Indian children’s charity Terre des Hommes Core Trust. The foster home is […]

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Transparent swimming pool to bridge Indian tower blocks 12 storeys up

Developers in London claim to be building the world’s first sky pool, but an even more extreme suspended glass-bottomed swimming pool is already underway in India (+ movie). The five-tower Twilight Star development in Surat, Gujarat, will feature a 20-metre-long, seven-metre-wide suspended swimming pool that is entirely transparent. It will link two residential blocks in much […]

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Vijayawada tower by Penda will feature modular elements that residents can personalise

Penda has devised a modular facade system for a high-rise block in Vijayawada, India, that will allow residents to customise the appearance of the building with hanging gardens and balcony details (+ slideshow). The Beijing studio was commissioned by Indian developer Pooja Crafted Homes to design the Vijayawada Garden Estate for a corner plot in the city, which sits on the banks […]

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Indian architect Charles Correa dies aged 84

Breaking news: Charles Correa – described as “India’s greatest architect” – has died following a short illness. The founder of Mumbai-based Charles Correa Associates, whose work includes the Mahatma Gandhi memorial in Ahmedabad and the Champalimaud Centre for the Unknown in Portugal, died on 16 June in the Indian city. He was 84. Architect David […]

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Sameep Padora’s Lattice House is an Indian holiday home wrapped by wooden screens

The stacked horizontal volumes that make up this house in Jammu, India, are clad in vertical timber battens to regulate the amount of sunlight that enters (photos by Edmund Sumner + slideshow). Lattice House was designed by Sameep Padora & Associates as a second home, and the client also wanted it to be possible to rent out the upper floor. The […]

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Bamboo-framed canopy shades Kolkata community centre by Schilder Scholte

A corrugated steel roof supported by bamboo columns provides shelter for three buildings, a bicycle workshop and a playground at this community centre in India (+ slideshow). Rotterdam-based Schilder Scholte Architecten was commissioned by non-profit organisation Pani to build the Pani Community Centre in Rajarhat, a new town to the north-east of Bengal city Kolkata – formerly Calcutta. Related story: […]
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Indian office block by SPA Design features brick arches and stepped rooftop gardens

Gardens on the terraced roofs of this brick office building in northern India were designed by SPA Design to reference an ancient Indian well and the legendary Hanging Gardens of Babylon (+ slideshow). The headquarters for clothing sourcing company Triburg was designed by Indian firm SPA Design for a site in an industrial park in Gurgaon, […]
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Steven Holl to design new wing for Mumbai City Museum

News: New York architect Steven Holl has seen off competition from 104 applicants including Zaha Hadid, OMA and Amanda Levete, to design a new wing for the Mumbai City Museum. Steven Holl Architects collaborated with Mumbai practice Opolis Architects on the red stone design for the new north wing of Mumbai’s oldest museum, the Mumbai City Museum. The Victorian museum sits […]
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