The Leaf House
Residential Interior Design I Alibag, Maharashtra
Area 6,500 Sq.ft
Status Completed 2012
Photographer Rajesh Vora
Team Shimul Javeri Kadri, Vaishali Mangalvedhekar, Roshni Kshirsagar
Supported by angled steel columns, the concrete roof canopies shelter all five rooms, which include four spaces surrounded by glazing and an open-air living room bordered by a lily pond and pool.
Our project – to create a family home of 650 sq.m on a 1.3-acre plot of land at the base of the hills, but far removed from the sea. Land lush with the native coconut, mango and neem trees, and peers up at the sunrise on the eastern hills above it. It was a beautiful property – we wanted to include the hills and trees and the gentle winds – the leaves strewn over the earth were the perfect cues.
Sculpting open space encompassing native trees
The form of the leaf – gentle but sloping was perfect and our very first sight of the plot yielded a site plan made of dried leaves. The Client enjoyed the idea of pods – overlapping but distinct, to house each part of the home, and the journey between pods, to be sculpted open space encompassing native trees.
Exploration of natural forms
The house began as an exploration of natural forms, built and designed to sit in nature. It encountered the manmade constructs of doors, windows and domestic gizmos - the orthogonal products of an industrial economy. Navigating and refining this encounter, into a serene and natural environment for a family to live in complete comfort, embedded in nature, was the challenge of this architectural and interior design project.
The Leaf House is a weekend family home in the lush surrounds of Alibaug, Maharashtra, embedded in a verdant 1.3 acre site at the foothills, away from the sea. The leisurely family home required living spaces, kitchen, dining, a master bedspace, children’s room, a space for guests and a play area as part of the residential architecture. The name and ensuing architectural form of the home emerged from a serendipitous sight of dried leaves strewn about the site.
The sloping yet open curves of the leaves evoked design ideas to create a calming yet efficient micro- environment. With a modern expression of minimal aesthetics and material palette, the Leaf House echoes the characteristics of tropical modernism.