Excerpt: Skylight House, designed by i2a Architects Studio, is a contemporary take on the traditional Nalukettu architecture of Kerala into a cosmopolitan hub. The limelight of the architectural symphony is the multiple gathering spaces scattered across the soul of the home; the courtyard. The strategic openings act as a catalyst of exchange between the observer and the observed via the play of light, wind, and the colors of nature.
[Text as submitted by Architect] The Skylight house, operates on the principles of purity in planning with a minimalistic ensemble in the interiors to create a home that flawlessly connects the spaces, reaching beyond the walls and becoming one with the ethereal nature and the mighty sky above. The dramatic pitched roof that spans the entire house’s width catches the viewer’s eye from far away. The roof design was strictly done following the tropical climatic conditions by providing maximum overhang on the slopes. The house is in a prime residential area in the Thrissur district of Kerala. The client wanted to build their house keeping in mind the privacy from the surroundings and associated with the natural environment, creating a comfortable dwelling away from the bustling city.
This South facing house is a contemporary take on the traditional Nalukettu architecture of Kerala into a cosmopolitan hub with the majority of openings directed towards the central courtyard, built to balance heritage and modern comforts. One is welcomed into the house by a magnificent courtyard filled with light, plants, and wind. The limelight of the architectural symphony is the multiple gathering spaces scattered across the soul of the home; the courtyard.
The formal and informal living rooms and dining area have been designed to be multi-functional and work together as one and seem to connect. The family room spills out into an ample verandah that flanks the water body and north garden. Another unique planning that allows space and privacy for a large family is seen in the kitchen, which is divided into a wet and dry area. The private core of the built space is to the North East side where the thick canopy of trees helps to buffer the heat from the harsh sunlight and also filter the rustling winds into the bedroom.
The upper floor has the master bedroom, son’s bedroom, and a guest bedroom along with a huge terrace that overlooks the garden and is used for hosting parties. The master bedroom in the upper floor opens completely out to the courtyard space using sliding doors creating an intimate connection to the private courtyard. The private spaces above overlooking in to the double height courtyard become an interaction pivot. The strategic openings act as a catalyst of exchange between the observer and observed via the play of light, wind and the colors of nature.
The house’s interiors flaunt neutral color schemes and fabrics keeping a minimal and earthy look alive. Wooden joineries, seamless white walls, corten steel screens, and cement tile flooring constituted a pleasant composition of materials. The perforated metal sheets at strategic junctions in the façade and interior act as an interplay, balancing the warmth and solidity of the wooden elements. The ribbed wood aesthetics adds a sense of richness to the room, also creating a cozy mood that feels calming and monastic. This modern abode is curated to provide a much-needed respite from the outside chaos and to evoke nostalgia, contemplation and tranquilness within oneself.