Appealing Abode In Alibag

Anand Menon And Shobhan Kothari

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C'est La Vie in Alibag, a lavish bungalow by Atelier Design N Domain, has the right balance of open and closed spaces.

Second homes are mostly about creating a peaceful oasis far away from the hectic urban life. A site blessed with vegetation and a seasonal lake provided the perfect setting for this project. At the entrance of this 14,000 sqft house are a clump of trees that make for a grand entry and also create a buffer from the main road.

Designing in tropics is about creating the right balance of open and closed spaces. The sun and other elements can be unforgiving in these conditions.

C'est La Vie in Alibag, Maharashtra, has been designed in clusters of programmes held together with a strong circulation spine with most of the facilities addressing the pool in the centre of the house. The living-dining pavilion is a glass box, which has a deck extension onto the pool on one side and private lawn on the other side bound by the arrival court curved stone wall. This court is further enhanced with a water body fed by a gargoyle that emerges from the curved wall.

Designed by Atelier Design N Domain, the guest pavilion opposite the living pavilion houses four bedrooms with attached toilets. The pool bar and outdoor dining flanks one end of the pool while three spouts edge the other end. Directly above the outdoor dining is the master bedroom with its attached bathroom. The plunge pool attached to this room overlooks the lake. The children's room is designed as a concept of box within a box and is cantilevered. The wooden box sits inside the glass box.

At the far end of the pool is the jacuzzi, which overlooks the main lawn that has the tennis court. The games pavilion is adjacent to the jacuzzi area.

The furniture in the house has been kept aesthetically appealing and practical. Surfaces are designed to withstand the severity of the climate. The bungalow uses natural stone, natural wood and LED lighting.

“Our design process is about creating moments that are elemental and episodically unfolding. The circulation within the house and spaces between functions need to follow a sequence of activity,” partners Ar Shobhan Kothari and Ar Anand Menon point out.