Excerpt: Weekend Home is a residence designed by the architectural firm Studio Motley. The plan is a simple configuration of rooms around a courtyard. This central open space contains a kind and a large shade tree that breathes life into the sheltered zones. The emphasis here is on creating an ‘outdoor room’ that connects the house to the landscape and forms the Centre, unifying the entire composition.
[Text as submitted by the Architects] The Weekend Home is a 4-bedroom residence in a gated community with a built-up area of 650 sqm and has delineated visitor and private areas. The plan is a simple configuration of rooms around a courtyard. This central open space contains a kund and a large shade tree that breathes life into the sheltered zones. The emphasis here is on creating an ‘outdoor room’ that connects the house to the landscape and forms the centre, unifying the entire composition.
The brief from the client was that the house should be conducive for social gatherings of varying scales. As such, while the rooms spill out to the central court, this, in turn, connects to a larger lawn area. An external staircase connects to terraces at different levels. Hence, there is a potential for activity in several pockets while still relating to the central court.
The living room is treated as a distinct element, more public than the rest of the house. It takes shape as a 15′ high glass box sandwiched between 2 concrete slabs, the whole hovering over a reflecting pool. All spaces in the house have opportunities to spill out to different areas with terraces and balconies at various levels while still being connected visually from the central court. The master bedroom also has a small private rear garden and more public court.
Set within a gated community in Bengaluru, we focused on designing a house that took advantage of the temperate climate the city enjoys and created spaces that encourage a culture of outdoor living. The intent was that the place was climatically responsive even during the few months of peak summer. So all the glazing has deep overhangs to protect it with the living room (designed as a glass box) further cooled by the surrounding water body.
The west side of the layout has toilets and utility rooms-to eliminate the harsh west sun. The use of filler slabs also insulates the house, a technique where the concrete roofs have hollow clay blocks within it used to cool the home further. Materials chosen are local stone, brick, exposed concrete, timber, and glass to create natural textures and colours and bring warmth to the house.