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vol 13 issue 6

JUNE 2014

total pages 164





Rooshad Shroff unites traditional craft and contemporary design


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Photo: Cyrus Dalal


ooshad Shroff has been extremely quick to bag a series of envious commissions soon after his return from working with Zaha Hadid Architects in London and OMA New York. With a flair for experimenting with traditional craft and contemporary design, the Jaipur Modern store is the latest on Rooshad’s list of cultured design solutions. At Jaipur Modern, Rooshad has melded the dynamics of restorative architecture, contemporary interiors and bespoke furniture into a unified program transforming a 1940’s building into a stylish retail destination. His desire to engage with traditional embroidery and craft has infused an element of originality and charm into the décor that stays clear of common design convention. Architect Snehal Shah’s office in Surat is a reflection of their mantra - ‘honesty in material as well as spirit’. This motto is clearly evident in the layout, material choice and textural qualities that unify the space. Giving the design an additional edge is their commitment to zero-waste. This ensures old shuttering material is used to create peripheral storage units, while empty tin containers become personal mailboxes after a lick of paint. Even a fallen palm tree has been reused to make a dining table and chairs. These elements of ‘sustainable’ surprise add a silver lining to the firm’s ethos of integrating function, material and ideas. Manish Gulati, Principal Architect at M:OFA is certainly going places. Recently selected to exhibit at the Venice Biennale, his belief of not treading the beaten path is evident in the creation of a unique identity for a salon chain. Focussing on keywords like ‘pure’ and ‘unadulterated’, the team zone in on a design language that is earthy and rustic. Using materials cleverly and in their original state, the designers outline ideas sans any frills creating an unpretentious natural haven that welcomes and delights. Anish Bajaj, Editor

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art form



From Barcelona to Bahrain, Cuban American artist Jorge Rodríguez-Gerada does things king-size. His ephemeral artworks span several acres and fade away just like warmth does after an embrace.

There is indeed quite an extreme range in the types of sites, scales, programs and clients in our projects.

Architecture BRIO


Cover Story Architect Rooshad Shroff transforms a 1940’s building into a contemporary space filled with a remarkable juxtaposition of geometry and textures.

42 Home to an estimated 15,000 single-room factories, everything gets manufactured and recycled here. A trip to Asia’s largest slum, Dharavi.



From glossy laquered cabinets to award winning appliances, we bring you the lastest in kitchen styles and appliances from the best in business.



‘Samanvay’ the office building of Essteam, an architectural and urban design practice in Surat, is a perfect integration of functions, materials and ideas.


90 The Merry


From garments, photographs and furniture to paintings and even songs, Jaipur based Teatro Dhora relishes and retails all art forms.

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Designed by M:OFA Studio, the Monsoon salon cum spa exhibits its exuberance through a range of bespoke textures, lighting features and design strategies.

108 Planet Kids, a school designed by Bengaluru based design firm Cadence looks like it’s straight out of Grimm’s Fairy Tales or Arabian Nights.

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Playful, contemporary and seriously good-looking. The Raw-Edges design studio consistently comes up with the most heart-stopping designs. Get set to ooh and aah.

115 GREEN PROJECT A look at two projects by Denmark based Henning Larsen Architects which have made a definitive mark on the country’s environmentally conscientious design scene.


With Baroque arches, a stained glass window and a crucifix atop the roof, the Jane restaurant appears more a place to say grace before a meal than a place to sit down for it.

134 Landscapes


Award-winning landscape architect Chad Robert creates magic in the desert. His firm turns a private garden into a conversation starter with lots of local flavour.


Dhara Kabaria


144 The Dean Hotel in the historic downtown district of Providence ably reflects the colourful culture and eventful history of the rough neighbourhood in an all new light.

150 154 A look at some coveted projects and innovative products designed by Patch Design Studio, a young multi-disciplinary practice based out of Mumbai.

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THE MARKETPLACE Get your hands on the latest products to hit the market


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Editor & Publisher Anish Bajaj Creative Director Natalie Pedder-Bajaj

Parvathy Menon Freelance Writer and Photographer Parvathy is an architect who started writing just for the love of it. Currently based in Pune, she enjoys teaching, travelling and dabbles in anything that figures under the umbrella of art.

Features Editor Mala Bajaj Assistant Editor Shweta Salvi Sub Editors Vikas Bhadra Ulka Vartak Rehana Penwala Contributing Writers Chryselle D’Silva Dias Christabelle Athaide Dhanishta Shah Himali Kothari Kruti Choksi K Parvathy Menon Shruti Nambiar Designers Asif Shayannawar Snigdha Hodarkar Vikas Sawant

Dhara Kabaria Designer Dhara is an alumnus of the School of Interior Design, CEPT, Ahmedabad. Her fascinations include furniture design, exhibition design, design education and the alternate use of material in design.

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Editorial & Marketing Mumbai Mr. Ganesh Gurav, Mr. Vivek Jadhav, Mr. Rakesh Kini (Digital), B-62, Cotton Exchange bldg., Cotton Green, Mumbai 400 033 T 022 23736133/1, 32958501 F 022 23743069 E

Snehal and Saloni Shah Steaming With Ideas, Page 81 Snehal and Saloni Shah’s architecture and interior design studio - Essteam, completed a decade of practice last August. They execute urban design projects undertaken by their other firm Urban Initiatives, and also create beautiful art installations through their youngest venture - Obl/que.

Delhi Ms Sumita Prakash Flat F 304, Rajasthan C.G.H.S. Ltd, Plot No. 36, Sector 4, Dwarka, New Delhi 110075 Tel 09899179540, Email: Chennai Mr S. Venkataraaman Flat No. 2, 3rd Flr, E-Block, Hansa Garden, 30 Madampakkam Main Rd, Rajakilpakkam, Chennai 600 073 Tel 044 22281180 / 09444021128 Email: Kolkata Mr Subrata Mazumder 2, Nabapalli (Bidhanpalli). Kolkata 700084 Tel 033 2410 4296 Mob 9831131395 Telefax 033 2410 7605 Email: Publishing Director Mr. R.I. Bajaj Distributed in India by India Book House Pvt. Ltd. 412, Tulsiani Chambers, Nariman Point, Mumbai 400 021.

Rooshad Shroff A Modern Avatar, Page 26 Rooshad Shroff studied architecture at Cornell and Harvard Universities in USA. After working on several interesting projects in New York and London, he is now back home. A couple of years ago, Rooshad started his own studio for furniture, architecture and interiors; he also dabbles in many other creative ventures.

This issue has a total of 164 pages comprising of a 4 page cover plus 160 inside pages. We welcome unsolicited material but do not take responsibility for the same. Letters are welcome but subject to editing. All rights reserved. Nothing may beprinted in whole or part without written permission of the publisher. The editors do their best to verify the information published but do not take responsibility for the absolute accuracy of the information. All objections, disputes, differences, claims and proceedings are subject to Mumbai Jurisdiction. Editor Mr. Anish Bajaj. Published and Printed by Mr. Anish Bajaj on behalf of the owner Marvel Infomedia Pvt. Ltd, B-62, Cotton Exchange bldg., Cotton Green, Mumbai 400 033

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Henning Larsen Architects Green Project, Page 115 Henning Larsen Architects has always been characterised by curiosity and vision. Designs that are founded on social responsibility and which achieve reduced life-cycle costs are a trademark of the firm.

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emails + feedback Coffee Time Unlike the fast city life of the metropolis, The Birdsong Cafe in Mumbai reflects a quaint corner where a lot can happen over a cup of coffee. Kriti Monga, Mumbai

Green Governance The John W Olver Transit Centre in Greenfield, Massachusetts sets a great example for government owned eco-friendly buildings and initiatives in the US. If we could only do something similar with our Mahanagar Palika buildings - sigh! Nitin Sawant, Mumbai

Garden Supreme

Maximising Spaces

Let us know what you love and hate about this issue. Mail us at

Reorienting a courtyard that can be so beneficial for maximising space within a given framework was wonderfully articulated in your article Long Courtyard House. Austin Xavier, Mumbai

Bright School, Bright Minds Though the Isabel Besora School designed by NAM Arquitectura has a monochramatic colour scheme, the ‘bright white’ pretty much elevates the fact ‘bright school for bright minds’ Fiona D’Souza By Email

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The private garden developed by Dean Herald in Sydney featured in your magazine is an awesome concoction of ownership, privacy and creativity. I was simply overwhelmed by the design scheme. Tanya Dagar, Pune

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E V E N T S APR 2014

Over a period of five days the event saw young designers and renowned creatives present the latest developments in contemporary design furthering a crosscultural dialogue between the global design scene and the city of Berlin.

Masonry Workshop Haryana, India techniques in still images and explore the tools of the trade to appreciate special effects as an art. Using special effect compositing tools, this workshop provided foundations to create 2D graphics - experimenting with filters, multiple layers and compositing techniques.

Last summer, Mr. Ameya Somany from the founding family of Somany Ceramics actively participated in a programme aimed at enhancing the skill sets of masons. The program was conducted by “Mango Tree” - Somany’s CSR initiative. The current programme was conducted over two weeks at Tijara Fort Hotel in Haryana, managed by the Neemrana Hotels group. 26 trained and semi-trained masons from neighbouring villages, along with masons already working on restoration projects were invited to enhance their skills.

Participants worked on a variety of assignments to gain a deep understanding of visual effects and create something that doesn’t exist at all an interesting way to communicate through an image, a thought or an emotion.


DMY - International Design Festival Berlin

A team of expert tile-masters taught the eager masons how to lay tiles in a specialised way, using efficient tools that saved time and material. The program was a great success fulfilling the broader perspective of empowering masons with advanced and forgotten skill-sets, while instilling a sense of pride in the profession.

5 9 MAY TO

Workshop on the Art of Creating Visual Effects Ahmedabad Visual effects (VFX) is the integration of live-action footage and computer generated imagery to create an environment that looks completely real but would be simply impossible to capture on film. The objective of this workshop was to provide the fundamentals of visual effects and basic

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DMY Berlin is an international design network for contemporary product design. At the yearly DMY International Design Festival Berlin both renowned and young, experimental designers launched new products, prototypes and projects. The exhibition was accompanied by a wide program of symposia, designer-talks and workshops, reflecting current topics of contemporary design and revealing necessary future trends of design and related disciplines. The DMY International Design Festival brought together the powerful potential of contemporary design and gave it a space and setting, exposing it to a wide audience.

7 JUNE TO 23 NOV 2014

Architecture Biennale Venice, Italy The Venice Biennale has for over a century been one of the most prestigious cultural institutions in the world. The Venice Biennale is famous for the International Film Festival, for the International Art Exhibition and for the International Architecture Exhibition; it also continues the great tradition of the Festival of Contemporary Music and Theatre, now flanked by the Festival of Contemporary Dance. The Biennale promotes numerous publishing initiatives in the same sectors. The Biennale takes place once every two years (in odd years) in Venice, Italy. The Venice Biennale of Architecture addresses the academic side of architecture. It is an occasion where big-name architects and designers showcase new projects, arranged in different pavilions, each with different themes. The architecture section of the Venice Biennale was established in 1980, although architecture had been a part of the Art Biennale since 1968. This year the 14th International Architecture Exhibition, entitled Fundamentals, will be directed by Dutch Architect Rem Koolhaas and chaired by Paolo Baratta, the president of the Venice Biennale.

19ArtTO Basel 22 JUN


Art Basel stages the world’s premier modern and contemporary art shows. The show’s individual sectors represent every artistic medium; right from paintings and sculpture to installations and photography; each day



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E V E N T S 26Masterpiece JUN TO 2 JULLondon

London, United Kingdom

offers a full program of events, including symposiums, films and artist talks. Further afield, exhibitions and events are offered by cultural institutions in Basel and the surrounding area, creating an exciting, region-wide art week. The anchor of Art Basel is its Galleries sector, where 230 of the world’s leading galleries of modern and contemporary art show 20th and 21st century artworks. Visitors will discover a breadth of works including paintings, drawings, sculpture, installations, prints, photography, video and digital art by more than 4,000 artists.

contemporary art in Berlin. Since the year 2004 KW Institute for Contemporary Art has been the supporting organisation of the Berlin Biennale. Its significance for the cultural landscape is reflected in the patronage granted by the Kulturstiftung des Bundes (German Federal Cultural Foundation).

TO 29 JUN 23Sheffield Design Week

Sheffield, United Kingdom

All works are stringently vetted by a committee of experts before the fair opens giving buyers every confidence in their choice.

The panel discussions will facilitate dynamic dialogues between prominent members of the international artworld, each offering their unique perspective on producing, collecting, and exhibiting art. Conversations are presented in collaboration with the Absolut Art Bureau.

TO 9Design 11 JULTokyo

29Berlin MAY Biennale 3 AUG TO

Berlin, Germany The Berlin Biennale is a forum for contemporary art in one of the most attractive cities for art. Taking place every other year at changing locations throughout Berlin it is shaped by the different concepts of wellknown curators appointed to enter into a dialogue with the city, its general public, the people interested in art as well as the artists of the world. In 1998 the first Berlin Biennale took place founded on the initiative of Eberhard Mayntz and Klaus Biesenbach - founding director of the Kunst-Werke Berlin, in order to promote a representative and international forum for

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Masterpiece London returns to celebrate the most exquisite art, antiques and design from across the world. Hosting internationally renowned exhibitors, the fair is resolutely committed to offering the best objects available by mixing contemporary with antique and the traditional with the eclectic.

Sheffield Design Week is being hosted in one of the UK’s most creative cities. Taking place annually, this seven day festival will host an array of local, regional, national and international design, architectural and creative names.


Design Tokyo showcases the latest design products and brings together leading designers from all across the world. From interiors to fashion and textile to outdoor living, Design Tokyo touches a number of sectors.

From graphic design to architecture and product design, the event will be a collaborative platform aiming to increase awareness and appreciation of design and develop new audiences.

Focusing on the need of individuals, this event also aims to bring to the fore all the latest tools, materials and accessories that help create extraordinary designs.

The inaugural Sheffield Design Week of June 2014 will be a citywide celebration of design in all its forms. It will offer both cultural and commercial opportunities, showcasing established and emerging design talent and innovative projects.

Design Tokyo features a number of modern design merchandise created using traditional techniques. This event will be of great significance to participants who are interested in the know-how of designing contemporary products using traditional techniques.



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The experiential content of any structure is as important as the aesthetic one. And the young firm Architecture Brio effortlessly bring this balance of plausible and implausible in their work. Headed by a Dutch - Indian duo, Robert Verrijit and Shefali Balwani, the firm in a short span of eight years has made its mark on the architectural map of the country. Their work is all about reinterpreting convention while allowing imaginative thinking to co-exist with contextual and functional aspects of a project. Architecture Brio’s practice, which boasts of projects from luxurious resorts to slum rehabilitation, flourishes on fastidious groundwork and research. It is further fostered by innovative technologies and sustainable principles. Though the couple’s diverse backgrounds bring in that unique edge which is reflected in their work, what stands out is the interactive experiences that their spaces offer. Considered as one of the most promising practices of the future, the principals keep themselves actively involved in the academic scene of the country through teaching. One of their recent projects, ‘House on a Stream’, has won several awards and has been widely featured in publications worldwide. In this space, they talk about architecture, their future projects and their passion for anything that requires boundless imagination...

my space

Interview by Shweta Salvi

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What are the core fundamentals of your practice at Architecture BRIO? Robert: We are foremost passionate about designing. Designing unimagined possibilities. Creating unexpected and inspiring environments. We like to work on the fine line between the ordinary and the surprising, between extreme solutions and appropriateness. We have an aversion towards conventions and believe tradition, as a concept is important as long as it is allowed to evolve. That’s why we are constantly searching for new opportunities, reinventing techniques and reinterpreting typologies.

We have an aversion towards conventions and believe tradition, as a concept is important as long as it is allowed to evolve.

A designer has to be at his creative best when assigned with a children’s space to design. How was the experience of designing for the Learning Pavilion in Karjat, especially with challenges like limited budget? S: The initial requirements and the project brief were fairly straightforward. The Centre needed additional shaded areas to hold orientation programs and workshops with the children that visit the Centre. In addition to this they needed some amenities such as an area to store their canoes and kayaks. This meant that the pavilion had to be situated close to the river from where the equipment could be launched. The position of the building on the site was the most critical part. We selected the present location, as it was the confluence of the river, the football field, a small hill and a seasonal stream.

Robert’s Dutch background, Shefali’s Indian roots, and your combined experience at Srilankan architect Channa Daswatte’s firm, what role have these factors played in your practice today? Shefali: These varied experiences and exposures have a very strong influence on the way we perceive our world. More and more ideas spread around the world with an increasing speed today. On one hand this phenomenon has and is eradicating certain specificities and uniqueness of the places where we are asked to build. On the other hand we strongly believe that with our cultural backgrounds we can create entire new environments that were previously impossible.

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“The House on a Stream” was determined by very stringent constraints that were inherent in the project. Eventually, it is about the design process, developing options, making numerous models etc, till we have narrowed down on one option.

Even though this building seems to be a small kit of parts, its assembly and its execution was a challenge due to the remote location of the site and its limited budget. We, in a way had to play the role of contractor ourselves getting it executed bit by bit through specialized agencies. This meant the involvement of our office on this project was full time on a daily basis. We designed the pavilion as an extension of the challenge course at site, hoping that the children would be using it not in a conventional way as just a shelter, but start interacting with it and seeing it more as an oversized jungle gym. So, it was heartening when on the very first day, we noticed the children overcoming their own boundaries, working in teams to traverse the ropes bridge, climb the Jacob’s ladder and balance on the log bridge that we integrated into the design.

Exhaustive research is put in every site undertaken by Brio. What’s the basic approach to design for any given site? At one end you’ve designed a project like ‘The house on a Stream’, which had a beautiful large site to build on and a comfortable budget to further boost creativity; and then, you have your recent project - a rehabilitation of the Marol slums, that of course has land, budget and program constraints. What’s your approach like when met with such diametrically diverse challenges?

R: There is an inspirational and associative aspect of a site that becomes our guiding force in the design conceptualization, but there are also quantitative aspects derived through analytical processes that are as important to us. It seems to be the norm here to (even by an architect guided building projects who claim to design “contextually”) not look beyond the perimeter of the site boundary.

R: There is indeed quite an extreme range in the types of sites, scales, programs and clients in our projects. But when you start uncovering the real nature of a project, it turns out that each project has its own set of challenges and problems. When you start pushing the boundaries on these projects the constraints automatically surface as well. I would in fact argue that

Often we, for example, see university campuses designed with the aim to mimic the qualities of a city, but are in fact designed to be excluded from the city completely.

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Competitions are a good platform to tap into new talent. How has participating in competitions helped your practice? S: Robert won the European competition in the Netherlands back in 2006, which gave gave us the confidence to start our own practice. Later on in our practice we won two competitions in Sikkim, i.e. the Butterfly Reserve and the Biodiversity Training Institute. Often, it is definitely a way to get commissions of a different scale or type which otherwise remain out of reach for niche practices such as ours.

A structure designed by another architect which continues to have an impact on you every time you visit… The construction industry is at its peak in India, however one can’t say the same about architecture. It won’t be completely off the mark to say that it lacks character. What, according to you needs to be changed, in the way architectural practices are headed today? R: There seems to be a lot happening at a private scale, however, it is architecture in the public realm that needs dramatic change. There are of course various reasons and excuses why there is a dearth of good architecture; bad governance, contradictory regulations, restricted budgets, greed to build more than is allowed, poor patronship and so on. But at the same time on average the bar set by architects so far is fairly low, so it really depends on the architect’s own ambition.

R: The monastery designed by Dutch Architect Dom van der Laan in the south of the Netherlands. We visited it together when Shefali was an exchange student in Holland in the year 2000. Since then we try to visit it when we can, as it is close to where my family lives in the Netherlands. This little jewel has an overwhelming complete sense of light, proportion, structure, materiality, texture, calmness and understated richness that I only experienced again in Tadao Ando’s work.

We think that there is a lot of progress that can be made by using bamboo in combination with other materials in otherwise conventional building methods.

But we always struggle with the fact that the client in a competition is mostly absent. We enjoy the process of engaging with a client to make something unique together. What we think is exciting and appropriate in a competition design often comes as quite a shock to the client at the moment of the presentation. So we often loose competitions as well! An Indian monument you would love to give a facelift to? R: Haji Ali in Mumbai. It has the most beautiful setting in the city and from a design perspective has so much more to offer.

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What are you currently working on? S: We are currently making a 1:6 scale doll house for a client. It has been very inspiring to create a three-dimensional experience for a child and her dolls! You don’t need to worry about practicalities such as privacy, safety and functionality. But you do need to imagine how you would enable a child to use her imagination and play with her dolls in that space.

With the growing awareness about sustainability, many architects are consciously trying to incorporate certain eco-sensitive values in their design. What according to you should an all-encompassing green project entail? R: When you start looking at a project holistically then everything should eventually fall into place. For example, when you deduce from a long term strategic planning that your building is only required for 20 years, then you could design a building that can be dismantled after 20 years! Does your building need to be durable, flexible or temporary? We often struggle to engage the parties that are involved in the building process in envisioning these kind of time spans.

A traditional technique or a material that you would like to work with in future? S: In 2008 we designed a dormitory building with bamboo as a structural system. For various reasons the project unfortunately never took off. But we have currently two projects under construction where we will be employing bamboo in various ways. We think that there is a lot of progress that can be made by using bamboo in combination with other materials in otherwise conventional building methods.

The process for us has been bit the same as designing an actual house - right from conceptual drawings to construction drawings. We have a carpenter making it instead of a civil contractor. We made electrical plans for it. We have got steel light fittings fabricated for the decorative lights. We’ve made screen details for it, pool details, railing details, even soft furnishing and artwork. We’re excited to see how it all comes together.

What do you do in your spare time...any other interests? S: Robert has a green thumb. We have a small apartment but we make our own compost and grow a variety of herbs, arugula, tomatoes, and paprika. I make it a point to cook one meal a day. Usually dinner. Making homemade everything is fun…whether making fresh pasta, pesto from the basil and arugula from our home terrace garden…it allows you to be imaginative.

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Architect Rooshad Shroff transforms an unoccupied building into a fresh and contemporary space filled with a startling juxtaposition of geometry and textures. Text By Chryselle D’Silva Dias Photographs Fram Petit Courtesy The Architect

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The great Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer once said: “Architecture is invention.” The transformation of an old building into a cutting edge, contemporary and useful space is also an invention of sorts. Designed by Mumbaibased architect Rooshad Shroff, the new Jaipur Modern store is an excellent example of this thought. Born in Mumbai, Rooshad Shroff studied at Cornell and Harvard Universities and has work experience with leading architects including Zaha Hadid in London, and OMA/REX in New York. He founded his multi-disciplinary firm in Mumbai in 2011. In addition to architectural and design projects (most recently, the Christian Louboutin store in Mumbai), the studio also creates furniture, products and graphic design.

The 1940s building in which the Jaipur Modern store is situated was unoccupied for a while. The redesign involved a complete overhaul of the rooms and courtyard. Structural changes, however, were kept to a minimum. Jaipur Modern is a simple single storey L-shaped structure divided into the store and the café in one wing and the kitchen in the other wing, a new extension to the property. “Every single design element has evolved from the building. It’s about respecting the old structure and not imposing superfluous design elements,” says Shroff.

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A striking black and white inlaid marble verandah floor sets the tone - you see more of this monochromatic pattern inside. The Louise Bourgeois inspired floor “was handcrafted by artisans in Agra, using 2” strips of locally sourced black and white marble.” A Marigold sculpture by Jaipur-based artist Prashant Pandey adds a spot of local colour and leads the eye inward. “The carefully considered space is designed to encourage a perception shift within the Indian market; from the local marble inlay flooring, hand embroidered walls, and an in-house textile range to a selection of India’s strongest contemporary design voices.”

The attention to detail is visible right at the start. Marble predominates as the material of choice in this project. The custom-made gate is white marble and leads to the entrance which is a grid of lawn and Kota stone, inset with embedded lights that create a charming pattern at night.

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The retail outlet is small but elegantly decorated. Clothes and jewellery by leading brands including Rajesh Pratap Singh, Valliyan and Pondicherry-based Oh La La by Agathe Lazaro stand out against whitewashed brick walls. Jaipur Modern retails home textiles under its own labels and incorporates traditional techniques such as embroidery, Indigo, Shibori and Ikat weaving in their products - once again putting the traditional craftsman front and centre. The changing room doors are also inlaid with marble with a wooden frame, effortlessly carrying the monochrome theme inside. Shroff’s beautiful marble Heart Tables find pride of place in here. The tables are hand carved from black and white blocks of marble resulting in a cantilevered form that sets the basis for the heart shape. For contrast, the tables have a glossy interior and a matt exterior.

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In the all-day cafe (called ‘The Kitchen’) traditional Italian food is served on black and white tables. The tables all have different eye-catching inlaid patterns. But what makes your heart really skip a beat is the gorgeous embroidered wall. Embroidery on wood for commercial use is a new idea and Shroff’s patented version of it spectacularly combines old wood with traditional craftsmanship.

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Tiny holes are created in 400 teak wood ‘bricks’ through which the embroidery thread is “stitched”. Each brick required three hours to embroider. The result is a colourful and very tactile piece of furniture that not only warms the room but also invites a discussion on craft and forgotten techniques. Another interpretation of the idea is an elegant sofa made from old Burma teak with 50,000 hand-drilled holes forming a hand-embroidered seat covered in Zardozi and a design made out of French knots.

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Jaipur Modern’s happy blend of colour, texture and traditional materials is an accurate foretelling of Rooshad Shroff’s sensibilities. His interest in combining traditional craft with contemporary shapes is resulting in interesting experiments and this is one young architect to watch out for. The decor in Jaipur Modern is a mix of things but all together it feels warm and welcoming. Even popular touches like a brightly coloured African Juju hat on one of the walls fits in perfectly with the monochromatic brick and wood. Traditional craftsmanship, hi-tech tools, geometry and texture; all these elements come together to breathe new life into a formerly unloved space.

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The spectacular ‘Wish’ portrait can be best viewed from a plane; or photographed by a passing satellite.

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art form

The Earth Is My Canvas

Get on a plane (or easier still check Google Earth) to view Jorge Rodríguez-Gerada’s latest series on landscape art. Spanning several acres, these spectacular pieces of artworks are sadly ephemeral and fade away just like warmth does after an embrace.

You’ve pinned his work, shared it on Facebook and exclaimed in wonder at the sheer scale of it all. From portraits covering the sides of a tall building to landscape art a few acres wide, Cuban American artist Jorge Rodríguez-Gerada does things king-size. His most recent work ‘Wish’ is an eye-boggling portrait that spreads over 11 acres of dockland in Belfast, Northern Ireland. With over 30,000 wooden pegs, 2,000 tons of soil, 2,000 tons of sand, grass, string, stones and a lot of hard work, ‘Wish’ is the largest land art portrait in the United Kingdom and Ireland. Created for the 2013 Belfast Festival at Queen’s, (where Rodríguez-Gerada is their first artist-in-residence), this is a stunning portrait of an anonymous little girl.

The artist Jorge Rodríguez-Gerada at the site of ‘Wish’ in Belfast before the work began.

Text By Chryselle D’Silva Dias Photographs Jorge Rodríguez-Gerada for the Belfast International Arts Festival at Queen´s Home Review June 2014


The scale of Rodríguez-Gerada’s work has always been larger-than-life. From humble beginnings in a Cuban exiled family that moved to the United States when he was three years old, Rodríguez-Gerada became one of the founders of the Culture Jamming movement with the group Artfux when he grew up. Culture jamming is a protest against popular advertising and branding bringing to the fore issues like censorship, dialogue in public spaces and the subtle messages that we absorb through advertising. Between 1989-1992, Artfux brought culture jamming to New York City where they altered billboards and street signs to reflect messages for social change. Billboards with alcohol and tobacco products were particularly targeted and these gained them notoriety. By 1997, Rodríguez-Gerada had begun to move away from Artfux as the Culture jamming movement was, ironically, increasingly being appropriated by big brands who were using the same methods to promote their own products. Designed as a sun stencil, the piece was made to bring attention to the problem of sunlight/heat that cannot escape back into space because of greenhouse gases.

Why the fascination with large-scale? “I am critical of the marketing that has crept into so many facets of our lives. I decided to do work that would counter it by using the same codes used by advertisers such as scale, visibility and eye catching images. I want these new iconic images to be huge and placed in strategic places. The location, the scale and the materials that I decide to use are usually chosen to emphasise what I am trying to state with each project.” In 2002, Rodríguez-Gerada moved to Barcelona and began his jaw-dropping ‘Identity Series’ of charcoal portraits of anonymous locals sketched on the walls of buildings in the city.

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Having the portrait of Barack Obama made with sand and gravel was akin to making a giant mandala to pray for change; its transient quality alludes to how hope too can fade away one day just like sand.

Home Review June 2014


Like most of his work, this series too is transient - the charcoal is not permanent and the portraits will fade over time or be destroyed when the wall comes down. “These time-based portraits gradually deteriorate. They become a metaphor of the fading of life, of fame and of the things we first thought were so important. The creation of the “Identity Series” is also an act that is environmentally sound and at the mercy of the natural world. The pieces fade away just like warmth does after an embrace.” Rodríguez-Gerada’s process begins with a photograph of his subject. He then creates the drawing on the sides of the building using hydraulic lifts. Drawings take about a week of work but last up to only six months, leaving no trace behind. Since 2002, Rodríguez-Gerada has created portraits for this series in cities all over the world from Barcelona right to Bahrain.

The Mama Cash project in Amsterdam highlighted the plight of Mesoamerican women in the region.

The term ‘Street Art’ is inadequate to describe Rodríguez-Gerada’s work which is really ephemeral beauty that makes the viewer contemplate and reflect on the transitory nature of the work and indeed, our own humanness.

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Home Review June 2014



Dharavi is located in the middle of India’s financial capital, Mumbai. It is spread across a 2 square kilometre area. Christened as “Asia’s largest slum” by the (slum) tourism industry, international movies and the Government of India, its actually much more than that - it is a thriving industrial belt filled with small-scale factories. Walking through Dharavi, home to an estimated 15,000 single-room factories, it becomes difficult to conceive of anything that is not made or recycled here.

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There are plastic, metal and paper recycle units, leather and textile which includes dyeing clothes, block printing, screen printing and tailoring. You will find glue, pipes, soap and candle making units besides brick breaking, bread bakeries, pottery and the list goes on. Home to a million residents, Dharavi is full of self-sufficient entrepreneurs who have created job opportunities on their own. It is a multi-religious, multi-ethnic, diverse settlement. Hundreds of tourists, artists and photographers visit Dharavi every week to peep into the lives of people living in this infamous slum. If you can ignore the filth, stink, deafening noise, and poverty in these narrow lanes and workshops - apart from hard-work and sweat - you will also stumble upon creative inspiration in the form of graffiti, patterns, shapes and colours.

Home Review June 2014


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Home Review June 2014



HOME REVIEW KITCHEN SPECIAL Page 47 Kitchen Inspirations From Open-Plan To Island, We Have Everything Covered

Page 60 Appliances Technology And Design Meet In The Kitchen

Page 69 Countertops That Bring In Some Character

Page 67 Flooring & Wall Surfaces Let Your Walls And Backsplash Do The Talking Page 72 Sinks & Faucets For That Perfect Wash To Make Your Pots And Pans Sparkle Page 75 Storage & Accessories Smart, Stylish And Ergonomic 46 Home Review June 2014

Page 74 Hardware That’s A Perfect Fit

Page 78 Industry Speak Experts Share Their View

KITCHEN INSPIRATIONS From open-plan to island, we have everything covered


Highly customisable, Foodshelf by Ora-誰to for Scavolini is inspired by the relationship between the kitchen and the living area. The living area enters the kitchen, influencing it with its compositions, with its play on closed and open spaces and striving for a one-of-a-kind type convergence.

Home Review June 2014



The right combination of colours in the kitchen plays an important role for a pleasant ambience. Here is a bold combination by Sleek that is very much in vogue these days. PU paint finish accompanied by veneer or wood is an extraordinary combination for the kitchen. A nature lover can have the beauty of wood coupled with a stylish trend.


Optimum space utilisation, ergonomic design, style and elegance are the important features in Hindware’s Evok kitchens. Evok kitchens are customised in conjunction with not just the size and shape of the kitchen but also take into account one’s taste requirements, lifestyle, cooking habits, and time spent in the kitchen. The outcome is maximum functionality, productivity and efficiency. Evok offers cabinets and surfaces in laminate, membrane, UV coating, acrylic, solid wood, aluminium and glass finishes in solid wood, WBR ply, MDF and particle board.

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Home Review June 2014




Perfectly rounded lines meet corners and edges, while high gloss polar white interacts with curry textured walls. The AV 4030 Polar White kitchen from Hacker is here to create a world of contrasts.

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Home Review June 2014



Since its inception, Metrika has realised the need to offer quality and designer kitchens. They offer durable materials that withstand rough handling, are abuse resistant and yet maintain modern aesthetics and high levels of comfort. Their modular kitchens are space saving and highly functional which also lends them an international appearance.


Three Alnoinox kitchen lines premiered at EuroCucina. These kitchens are low maintenance, scuff-proof, resilient and feature a strong structure and image. The unique Alnoinox steel kitchen has a sleek and elegant design. The powdercoated surfaces are available in all Natural Colour System (NCS) colours. The sandwich design into fronts and shelf boards is the feature of steel kitchens that makes them unique.

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The P‘7340 by Poggenpohl and the Porsche Design Studio is a kitchen which goes beyond the horizontal and takes on masculine attributes. Through the mitering of the front and carcase the front appears as a fine vertical line.

Home Review June 2014




Johnson Kitchens’ German modular kitchen range includes melamine finish kitchens with laser finished edges. It is the latest and the most advanced stage of technology which improves the functioning of kitchens by giving it a joint less smooth finish. It also features soft closing hinges with Profi+ technology drawer systems.


Europlak’s Pratico is an elegant solution for a utilitarian and economical kitchen that is also low on maintenance. Glass, aluminium and stainless steel components give the kitchen an international appeal. Various colour options and a choice of handles in different designs and styling make the kitchen very open to be personalised to specific needs. Europlak’s Pratico is available in more than 25 colour options.

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Home Review June 2014



PU back painted glass shutters having gola profile are displayed to enhance function and aesthetic appeal. This is also available in 17 standard colours and RAL range of colours on special request.

Their modular kitchens are made for luxury-hungry people looking for highend designs. Time spent in market: Raising the bar of lavish looking kitchens, striking the right balance with complete kitchen solutions, Ultrafresh has been in business for more than 21 years. Their factory, in Himachal, has been briefed with a never-compromiseapproach, and their team works under strict quality supervision and are skilled enough in giving a unique aesthetic appeal to every kitchen they modify.

Indian Kitchen, Indianised The vacuum in modern Indian kitchens is largely suppressed by international players giving a western look and utility to Indian kitchens. Ultrafresh’s core belief lies in Indianising the Indian

kitchen, where according to them, Indian kitchens are more than just a cooking corner in the house. Breaking the old age kitchen styling barrier, Ultrafresh brings a fresh look, western feel and Indian utility - all in one place.

Presence in market: Ultrafresh who comfortably sells over 1200 modular kitchens annually, have targeted 2000 kitchens in the present financial year. Now, that they have ventured into the franchise model, they insist on strict standards being maintained. Their plans of expansion from Delhi NCR market and Kolkata include tapping the Chennai market soon. Ultrafresh aims as being recognized as Indian modular kitchen king. Advertorial

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Home Review June 2014


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Home Review June 2014


APPLIANCES COOKTOPS & HOBS Technology and design meet in the kitchen


Presenting the Crystal Capsule Collection at EuroCucina, the total black finish of Franke’s Crystal Hob was enhanced with beautiful transparent jewel knobs. The minimalist hob features five highefficiency burners for heat distribution and rapid cooking and a removable magnetic heat guard, which acts as a temperature shield in front of the knobs.


Elica’s range of MFC Plus built-in hobs with QJC burners have five jets to give an even blue flame. They have multi flame control and have long lasting brass anodized black burners, cast iron grids and radio control knobs to give a professional and attractive look. The range is designed to suit Indian cooking, is highly energy efficient and available in black/white tempered glass and in 3/4/5 burner combinations.


Crafted elegantly with stainless steel and black glass, Bosch gas hobs are equipped with advanced triple flame burners. These burners provide efficient flame coverage for utensils and ensure even heat distribution that is required for the perfect ‘phulkas’. As safety is not an option while cooking, the gas hobs have inbuilt safety features such as Flame Failure Device, that cuts off the gas supply immediately in case the flame extinguishes accidently.

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Siemens FlexInduction hobs are crafted with cutting-edge technology to make cooking easier, quicker and safer. With FlexInduction technology it is possible to liberate from the restrictive one-zone cooking, with the innovative extended zone cooking feature. The hobs also boast of automatic pan recognition technology, a safety lock and are energy efficient and have better heat distribution.


Lumia is a new island concept hood that responds to demand for new product lines and a new look in the kitchen. The new design concept of this hood featuring an unusual volume and silhouette masterfully combines different sources of inspiration, playing with linear outlines and the unusual mashrabiya pattern reproduced on the body with a 3D laser. Powerful flush-mounted LED lights on the panel around the perimeter of the lower part not only light up the hob while saving energy but underline the cut-out pattern recalling the windows of traditional Middle Eastern homes.


Elica’s ongoing research into functionality and beauty finds expression in the form of designer extractor hoods. Chrome has an exceptionally high suction performance, which is ideal for large kitchens or for intensive sessions of boiling, frying and grilling. It’s a daring exercise in design, where technology permits absolute silence and is a master in controls, filtering systems and energy efficient lighting.


Cata designer kitchen hoods ensure nourishing smokeless environment for easy cooking. The Series Podium’s aristocratic design and high tech advanced motor makes it different from others; technological features are inducted to make the user’s life much easier. Other features of this hood include its royal finish, comfortable touch control panel with TN/140W power and 1100 m3/h of air flow.


Vents introduces a designer range of extractor fans with its Modern Series. The casing and the impellor design makes the fan efficient, leading to a lifelong service. The front panel is made from organic glass. Being a low-watt electronic motor, its rpm is 2400 with a maximum air capacity of 265 m3/h.


Sleek, in association with Airforce from Italy offers world-class chimneys to suit the Indian modular kitchen. It’s an innovative chimney that rises from the platform when needed and rolls back down when not, and is just perfect for the Indian kitchen. It’s a revolutionary counter mounted chimney that would remove all the space constraints of a regular chimney. The axial motors smoothly let the air out without detours and are powerful, silent and eco-friendly. Home Review June 2014



Smeg’s flagship 90cm pyrolytic built-in oven’s innovations include the new Easy Guide display that provides intuitive, simple control of multiple functions; and Smart Sense self-guiding cooking programs with access to 50 pre-set recipes. The SFP3900X features full pyrolytic cleaning and an eco-energy-saving pyrolytic option.


With Dynamic Cooking Technology, or DCT: the exclusive and patented oven technology, Franke guarantees excellent chef-proven performance. This technology can eliminate the risk of burning food, reduce energy use by 21%, bake food in a dietetic manner and ensure optimal results even when serving an à la carte dinner.


Hygienic and healthy cooking was never so easy and fun. KAFF built-in ovens have all the futuristic features, designed to give the perfect combination of health, performance and style. Its features include the brush finish steel exterior, built-in rotisserie that cooks and grills to perfection and trendy, easy-to-grip knobs. With the advantage of convection, bright lights and electronic ignition systems, Kaff built-in ovens are a sheer display of design and technology at work.



Built to bake, roast and grill, these ovens have a 3D Hot Air circulation offering unique heat circulation that spreads throughout the oven, and cooks your food perfectly. With additional features such as hot air grilling - apt for grilling of fish, poultry and larger pieces - this appliance provides you delectable treats that appeal to your taste buds. Furthermore, the intelligent safety features such as ‘Cool Door’ ensures surface temperature of the door is kept as low as possible.

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Miele introduces an all new fleet of ovens which won’t just make cooking easier but will also make you relish the art of cooking. The MoisturePlus function of Miele oven adds the right amount of water that is needed for bread, dough or meat. Food Probe tests the meat and wirelessly communicates with the oven which in turn decides the cooking time of the meat for perfect results. Moreover, an AirClean catalytic converter effectively prevents the release of cooking odours, keeping greasy vapours from depositing in the kitchen.


If kitchens are being redesigned around drawers, it makes sense that dishwashers are as well. DishDrawer™ requires less movement to open, load and close and requires no bending - bringing better ergonomics into the kitchen. DishDrawer™ delivers superior energy and water efficiency - in fact it uses less water per load than to wash the same number of dishes by hand. Powered by SmartDrive™ intelligent technology with water level sensing and a flow through detergent dispenser, DishDrawer™ ensures there is always an optimum wash cycle and better dish care.


Bosch’s German-engineered dishwasher is tailor-made for the Indian foodie. It’s fitted with technology that can kill 99.9% germs, rinse and dry dishes to perfection. Bosch’s dishwasher is a welcome change, made especially for Indian households. It ensures low power consumption, optimum utilisation of water, has a user-friendly design, child proof control lock and different wash programmes.


A key innovation in the Electrolux RealLife® dishwasher is the introduction of soft spikes and grips to hold even the most delicate of glassware safely and securely in place ensuring efficient yet gentle cleaning. A combination of XXL tub, twinaxis spray arm, removable cutlery tray, energy-efficient cleaning and an energy rating of A+++ and a noise pollution perspective 39dB to boot, makes it a diverse and effective dishwasher on the market.


The Generation 6000 dishwashers are designed to unpretentiously integrate into any kitchen style – traditional, contemporary and modern. Ranging from freestanding dishwashers to semi-integrated and fully integrated, Miele dishwashers blend into the kitchen cabinetry impeccably. They come with a handful of attributes: the Knock2Open technology opens the dishwasher automatically with two light taps on the door; the M Touch Control customises the user interface and the EnergySave programme uses only 0.83 kWh powering it with an A+++ rating.

Home Review June 2014



KAFF built-in refrigerators are a cool way to keep food fresher and healthier, for longer. They incorporate the advanced air purification system - Silver-Oxy Technology. Thus, the unique, anti-bacterial liner of these refrigerators releases silver ions, which in turn generate active oxygen to sterilise the interiors which blocks the growth of germs, fungi, viruses and bacteria. With sophisticated cooling systems thanks to several electronic temperature sensors in the fridge and freezer compartments and a sleek exterior, Kaff built-in refrigerators are a great choice.


The 790mm Fisher & Paykel French Door refrigerator featuring ActiveSmart™ Technology creates a controlled environment for better food care, constantly monitors the usage patterns of the fridge, and adjusts airflow to maintain a stable and even temperature. Also included is their famous drawer technology, allowing access to the freezer easily without needing to bend, reach or stretch. The slimline water dispenser takes up no internal space in the fridge and the icemaker is conveniently tucked away in the freezer, creating more space.


Professional conservation technology, maximum capacity and functionality are the hallmarks of the new Antarctica series of refrigerators presented by Smeg at EuroCucina 2014. In order to offer adequate solutions for diverse space and capacity requirements, Smeg has created 90cm and 75cm refrigerators, each rated class A+ and with a large Multizone drawer at the bottom that can operate as either a 0° fridge compartment, or as a freezer space.

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With an exceptional design that is carved to impress, the aCool refrigerator just doesn’t keep things cold. The ice and water dispenser provide cold water, ice cubes and crushed ice for refreshment whenever the mood strikes. The icemaker located inside the freezer can produce up to 1.9 kg of ice cubes in 24 hours. The refrigeration system in the aCool refrigerator of Siemens- the multiAirflow system, the freshProtectbox and sensor controls ensure that food will have the ultimate storage climate.



For connoisseurs of fine wines, who love to entertain in style, KAFF wine coolers are the perfect choice. They store and chill wine to perfection and keep them healthy and perfect for tasting. High in functionality, low in maintenance, easy to install and operate, KAFF’s freestanding and built-in versions, come with LED lighting facility, stainless steel door frame and handle for superior wine storage.


Siemens Domino BBQ Grill is built for avid barbecue lovers who fancy grilled food. The stainless steel grill with nine power levels ensures that the barbeque is unmatched with perfect culinary results. Siemens lava stones create an authentic grilling taste while ensuring minimum of smoke. It’s built with removable cast iron grill, oil drainage outlet and ceramic black glass lid that ensure that the used oil is drained off and the kitchen is kempt and stylish.


Equipped with spacious shelves finished in untreated wood, it is possible to store different shapes and sizes of bottles, from classic Bordeaux blends to Magnums, since the Smeg wine cooler has two separate compartments. The top compartment can store up to 30 bottles whilst the lower compartment can hold up to 15 bottles. In each section it is possible to independently adjust the humidity level, as well as the temperature in order to ensure the appropriate environment for different bottles: from 10°C to 18°C in the upper section and from 4°C to 12°C for the lower compartment.

Home Review June 2014



The new Generation 6000 coffee makers promise to leave its patrons overwhelmed with exclusive features like M Touch Control - a smooth user interface, CupSensor that rules out the problem of spluttering and milk and coffee splashes, ensuring the perfect coffee temperature and the best crema. The OneTouch for two functions feature allows the user to prepare two coffee specialties such as Cappuccino and Latte Macchiato at the same time. This advanced Miele coffee machine is the world’s only builtin coffee machine to use the popular Nespresso capsule system.


An after dinner coffee is catered for with a 45 cm integrated coffee machine, although one can choose a powerful espresso or a long, indulgent cup at any time of the day from one of the five coffee quantity selections, whilst further diversity is offered from a choice of coffee beans or pre-ground coffee. Premium design is offered through a white LCD display with touch controls, a front accessible water tank for easy refill and all with an antifingerprint stainless steel finish.



The new range of Gourmet Warmer Drawers not just warm crockery to the right temperature for serving, or keep food warm, but also slowly cook meats at low temperatures for that perfect flavour. They feature a separate heater and fan to prevent condensation forming on plates and dishes. Miele warming drawers have discreet sensor controls with pre-set programmes for crockery and food and a timer to automatically switch the appliance off after a set length of time.

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Understanding the ever-changing lifestyle of consumers, Siemens Warmer Drawer partners you in relishing warm food with your family. The low, apt heat is perfect for pre-heating and ideal for serving delicacies. Stylishly designed with a body of stainless steel and black glass, the Siemens warmer drawer is built to co-ordinate with Siemens single ovens, combi ovens and coffee machine. The pull-out drawer is equipped with telescopic full extensions rails and co-ordinating handles to ensure easy functionality and maximum convenience to access the contents.

FLOORING & WALL SURFACES Let your walls and backsplash do the talking


The Bisazza Mosaic 2014 Collection includes a new range in ceramic that will join new mosaics to create bespoke surfaces. Marcel Wanders designed Bisazza’s first black and white body enameled collection, Frozen Garden. The hexagonal tiles come in diamond and flower shapes (Ceramic Crystal and Ceramic Flower Crystal), and can be freely combined to transform walls into a tactile and uneven fabric.


Kajaria’s newly launched 25 x 75 digital ceramic wall tile collection is designed to make kitchens look more spacious with their unique elongated size. The current trend in tiles has been bigger is better, because bigger tiles appear to give any space an open and breathable ambience. However with the limitation and shortage of space in residential projects today, big tiles are seen as a less economical alternative, which is why Kajaria has introduced its 25 x 75cm digital ceramic tile range. The new ceramic collection is available in over 40 elegantly inspired designs.

Home Review June 2014




Somany’s extensive range of kitchen tiles includes both wall tiles and floor tiles for modern, classic and traditional styles. The kitchen tile range offers limitless possibilities and the variety in colours and sizes of kitchen tiles is enormous. Special highlighters are available to create intricate patterns or visual interest. These wall tiles are non-slippery, easy to clean, do not absorb odours, nor do they provide a place for allergens or bacteria to develop.


The HD digital wall tiles from Hindware tiles offer a readymade solution to brighten up a kitchen space. Glazed, stain free and easy to clean, these tiles come in a large format size which ensures lesser joints when laid, thereby enhancing their beauty. Available under their Concept series, these wall tiles complement floor tiles in light or dark shades. Hindware’s HD digital tiles are available in a variety of shades - neutral, white, brown, grey, stone as well as in pastels in geometric, floral and culinary designs.

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That bring in some character


Caesarstone quartz surfaces by Hafele are a fine combination of nature and technology. Non-porous, scratch resistant and highly resistant to stains, Caesarstone retains its beauty without sealants or waxes and is almost maintenance-free. Ideal for kitchens, Caesarstone stone surfaces have four times the flexural strength and double the impact resistance of granite while impressively outperforming marble. Due to the material’s outstanding durability, Caesarstone can be installed in thinner forms or in larger sections.


Kalingastone, the engineered stone division of Classic Marble Company, offers a range of quartz countertops for kitchens. Made of non-porous materials, quartz makes cleaning easy and prevents food and moisture from penetrating its surface. They have two types of quartz in this range: Classic Beige and Cagliari. Classic Beige is from the Eleganza series of Kalingastone Quartz Collection. This family has around 18 products from whites to beiges, browns to blacks and can be used for flooring, wall coverings, kitchen and table tops. Cagliari comes from the family of the Riviera range of quartz which is inspired by the Mediterranean.

Home Review June 2014




DuPont™ Corian® solid surface is nonporous, durable, non-toxic and easy-to-clean. It is certified for food contact making it ideal for use where food is prepared and served. Under normal temperatures, it does not emit any kind of gases. When burnt, it releases mainly carbon oxides and the smoke generated is optically light. Moreover, Corian’s new Dark Colors from its innovative DeepColor® Technology delivers greater depth of colour with improved durability and reduced scratch visibility by 50% and increased resistance to impact whitening.

“Corian® 2.0” exhibition, 2014 Milan week of design; the Super-Black kitchen and the Blackground table”; design by Christian Ghion; fabrication by Crea Diffusion; photo Leo Torri for DuPont™ Corian®; all rights reserved on design and photo.

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Home Review June 2014



For that perfect wash to make your pots and pans sparkle


Grohe’s latest collection of elegant kitchen faucets titled ‘Zedra’ is a great blend of contemporary aesthetics and maximum functionality with exemplary reliability for rigorous everyday use. For easier maintenance, Limescale on the flexible pull-out sprays can be easily removed thanks to the SpeedClean® nozzles. The Zedra collection comes in two high-quality finishes: the high-gloss Grohe StarLight® chrome and the durable Grohe RealSteel with antibacterial properties.


Ceramic is an established material offering subtle variations and, when combined with a surfaces made from wood, stainless steel, glass or paint, creates exciting highlights in the kitchen. One such ceramic sink is Vero by Duravit which features a straight-lined and timeless design. The undercounter sink proves particularly practical in everyday kitchen use - liquids and food waste can be wiped straight into the sink from the worktop. Whether wood, natural stone or granite, Vero can be combined with virtually any worktop material.


Dornbracht has transferred the increasing significance of the copper colour trend to the kitchen environment. Cyprum is a high-gloss finish produced using 18-carat gold and copper and is now available for the first time for kitchen fixtures. Dornbracht is adding a new rose-gold sheen to its fitting icons Tara and Tara Classic, as well as its single-lever 360° range-of-motion mixer Pivot. The pure and well-defined style of the Tara series, and the intuitive functionality of Pivot subtly interact with the warm elegance of Cyprum.

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Ebco kitchen sinks are manufactured using 304 grade stainless steel. These sinks can be either flush fitted, under mounted or simply inset. They are available in three stylish finishes: electropolish, brushed steel and microdecore (anti-scratch).


Flavia - a family of sinks for kitchens, from modern to classic, is designed for everyday use. These high-quality ceramic sinks are available in three sizes - 45, 50 and 60 cm. There are also 16 contemporary ceramic colours to choose from. Flavia is equipped with a waste system basket strainer. Grooves and elevated areas on the drainer surface give tableware the air supply it needs to dry perfectly. The sinks are reversible, too, for right or left-side installation as required.


Designed by Mario Ferrarini, the new Crystal sink uses stainless steel and black glass to showcase the interplay between reflections and height effects. The severity of steel is broken up with two six mm thick glass sheets which fit perfectly into the recesses designed to accommodate them. These two design accents conceal the overflow and drain openings, ensuring faultless co-ordination with the other elements in the system. Available in two versions - a maxibowl or a bowl with a dégradé, line-free draining board designed to let water run off gently - Crystal also features zero radius bowls.


Sleek elegance of modern design is embodied in the Trinsic Kitchen Collection from Delta Faucet. Because sometimes your hand could use a hand, Trinsic pulls down faucets with Delta’s patented Touch2O technology that allows you to turn On and Off your faucet with a simple touch anywhere on the spout or handle. Their MagnaTite docking system keeps the pull-down wand mounted securely in place.

Home Review June 2014


HARDWARE That’s a perfect fit


Owing to its elegant and completely new design, besides being in the kitchen, the Climber wall unit is placed consciously in the dining and living areas. The special feature of this cabinet is its 13 cm wide glass louvers, which are available in multiple finishes. Just through a slight touch on the bottom of the cabinet the glass front slides open electrically in a slow and elegant manner. It closes again in the same way. Depending on the body height the cabinet is equipped with one or two glass shelves, which can be fitted with optional LED lighting.


In Hacker’s sensomatic range, the drawer opens seamlessly and elegantly with a simple touch and another touch closes the drawer smoothly, without making any noise. It works on normal electricity so that there is no hassle of changing the batteries frequently. The Sensomatic range is also available in lift-up wall units where a slight touch opens the front and closing switch, is inside the carcass side so aesthetically it looks elegant and functional.


With the innovative lateral swinging hinge system, Sleek brings the world class LINX600 swivel door technology by Lamp (Japan). With the lateral swing mechanism the doors slide elegantly on either side of the cabinet, unlike ordinary doors that require considerable space in the front. The hinge allows the door to freely stop in any opened position. The door will not get in the way when fully opened providing 100% visibility and access to the storage. Based on the soft-closing technology, the damper produces self-closing movement for smooth, effortless operation.


As a smart, trendy and hygienic kitchen waste manager, Ozone offers its trash management system in two varieties – swing-out trash bin and pull-out trash bin. The swing-out bin is a 14-litre stainless steel round bin fixed inside a 13.5” wide cabinet and swings out when the cabinet is pulled for use. It can be easily emptied by pulling out the removable inner bucket provided inside. The pullout bin is available in two options; a two and three compartment PVC rectangular bin.

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STORAGE & ACCESSORIES Smart, stylish and ergonomic


In the Libell Magic Corner Comfort, all the shelves can be pulled right out of the unit and accessed from there. This corner unit allows for maximum use (over 80%) of the storage space. The shelves and fittings form an integrated whole with frames and slideout systems. The shelves’ rounded shape and curved corners also make them easy to clean and are available with non-slip mat.


Ozone’s Ergotec Drawer System, a highend kitchen furniture drawer system, is a premium and high-performance drawer system offering maximum inner drawer space, glides smoothly with perfection and has high load bearing capacity. This system comes in two varieties – Standard Drawer System and Standard Drawer System with Railing. The former is a full-extension sliding system suitable for 90mm tall drawers with a load capacity up to 45 kg. The latter comes with single and double railing bars which help to increase the drawer height as per user’s requirement.


The Tall Pull Out is a user-friendly unit and a real boon to the homemaker. This innovative space-saving unit is extremely compact for limited spaces in the kitchen. The tall unit smoothly slides straight and also swings to the side making accessibility extremely easy. It is a great unit to store bottles and dry food packages.


A modern interpretation of the classical country lifestyle for a young and innovative generation – that is Mariefleur, the successful collection introduced in 2012. For the year 2014, the series is being extended with additional salad plates, dinner plates and serving plates, along with bowls. The Mariefleur collection, with bright shades of pink, light green and sunny yellow, brings to mind a garden in full bloom at the height of summer. Because the decoration varies slightly from one individual product to the next, no two floral motifs are completely identical, yet all the tableware forms coordinate harmoniously with one another.

Home Review June 2014


SPOTLIGHT When Chirag Parekh returned from Switzerland with a postgraduate degree in 1993, he focused solely on creating composite quartz kitchen sinks. He developed an indigenous technology based on broken quartz as input (rather than the fine sandy form). A team of designers here worked closely with leading design firms in Germany and developed product designs which could compete with some of the finest international brands. This made Carysil sinks manufactured by Acrysil truly distinctive in design; their expertise lies in design and technology. It is the only company in India and one of the very few in the world that has the technology to manufacture composite quartz granite sinks.

What are the unique features of Acrysil products that appeal to Indian design sensibilities?

Mr. Chirag Parekh Chairman Managing Director, Acrysil Limited

Carysil kitchen sinks are resistant from scratches, stains, dents or heat. They are easy to clean and safe for food. Acrysil has now diversified into a whole range of products for kitchen and bathrooms which include stainless steel sinks, faucets, pulverizers, liquidizers, smoke vent hoods and motorised disposal units. We have recently introduced ‘Sternhagen’, the premium German brand for bathroom products for the luxury segment in India. The wash basins offer the ultimate in design innovation and engineering excellence.

What led to the evolution of Carysil? We saw that a vast untapped market exists for kitchen and bathroom products which were largely the domain of international companies. Having successfully developed the technology for composite quartz sinks, we went about the task of putting together a network of highly innovative and free thinking designers known for new ideas. This led to the evolution of the brand with a constant stream of stunning innovative ideas which captivated premium buyers worldwide. Carysil has evolved into a brand that combines art and advanced technology to create new products, new markets and new niches within existing markets. The success of the brand is the result of very high standard of quality to delight the senses and sensibility of end users consistently.

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SPOTLIGHT Carysil recently won a Red Dot and Plus X award; can you share details of the R&D efforts involved? Who designs the end product - an in-house design team or do you hire established designers? The Red Dot and Plus X design awards have been won by EMAMI, who have designed the Sternhagen range of wash basins for us. Acrysil’s own team of designers in India work alongside the world’s leading designers to continuously develop products with strong aesthetic appeal and product functionality. Acrysil aspires to become a Rs. 1000 crore company by 2020; having set an ambitious target what are your expansion plans and do you plan on any diversification? Yes, the company has charted out a road map which entails substantial expansion and diversification to achieve this objective. It has already launched a range of stainless steel sinks, smoke vent hoods and chimneys and set up manufacturing facilities for stainless steel sinks. The annual installed capacity of granite sinks has steadily increased from 30,000 per annum to 300,000 per annum, while the capacity of stainless steel sinks now stands at 80,000 per annum.

The recently launched ‘Sternhagen’ collection of wash basins has four nature inspired exclusive designs. The company plans to launch a whole range of bathroom accessories where consumers would have options to select from bundled sets of bathroom solutions. The well established businesses of composite quartz and stainless steel sinks, and the successful entry into a whole range of kitchen and bath accessories will propel the company’s growth. Where are the products that you export to big retail chains in USA and Europe manufactured – in India or in other locations across the world? We export our products to over 30 countries including sophisticated markets like US, France, UK, Germany, Singapore, Malaysia, China, Bahrain, Philippines and even countries like Colombia, Hungary, Iran and Israel. We also market them through some of the largest retail chains in these countries. All our products are manufactured in India and we are rapidly ramping up capacity to meet growing demands.

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In terms of kitchen accessories, what are the foremost solutions that people are choosing today to enhance functionality? The core of the kitchen is the hardware systems and accessories that matter the most when it comes to functionality, convenience, space utilisation and serviceability. Ebco offers intelligent hardware with technologically advanced built-in features like auto close, soft close and push open. The Ebco kitchen segment boasts of a wide range of products like drawer systems, baskets, larder units, carrousel units, pull-out units, waste bins, sinks, various utility racks, etc. All these products are designed to make working in the modern kitchen easier and much more convenient.

Rajesh Nair Director, Sales and Marketing, Ebco

What excited you most at EuroCucina this year?

Pernilla Johansson Design Director, Asia Pacific, Electrolux

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What’s really exciting to see is how minimalism has taken a turn and rather than continuing to see pure clean monolithic designs, designers are now combining materials, finishes, colours and accessories to create a modern yet warm impression. This approach provides us with a lot of opportunity for creativity with a clear emphasis on the finer details. We also see more open shelves, utensils on display and vintage dÊcor.


What are the latest trends in terms of finishes, styles and materials used in modular kitchens today? Since today’s trend demands the owner to create their personal iconic masterpiece, Bulthaup’s new product “solitaire” enables the users to decide how they want to use their furniture and can change their mind at any time. Bulthaup kitchens create a whole new experience by blending freedom, functionality, individuality and intuition.

Berty Tarrab Managing Director, Top Products India Pvt. Ltd.

The latest trends are soft velvety texture, a new, lighter colour: caramel. The unit fronts featuring the new soft-touch paint deliver an extra-special tactile experience. Their exceptional matte surface finish affords a highly attractive appearance and makes for an out-of-the-ordinary atmosphere. Also favourite are the warm brown shades of lava, cashmere and clay.

What sets your revolutionary product CoolDrawer™ apart from other refrigerators?

Sanjeev Wadhwa Country Head - India, Fisher & Paykel

The Fisher & Paykel CoolDrawer™ is the world’s first multi-temperature fridge drawer. It enables you to cool, store, freeze, preserve and freshen foods at the choice of five specifically designed temperature controls. This wide easy-pull-out drawer system has revolutionised the world of refrigeration products. The piece de resistance is that CoolDrawer™ is intended for integration. The unit is designed to accept any cabinetry frontage you desire. Ergonomically too, CoolDrawer™ exceeds expectations, as there is no need to bend to access the freezer or reach the top shelf of a fridge.

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INDUSTRY SPEAK Miele is known for offering cutting-edge appliances. How do you perceive the future of such appliances in India?

Dhananjay Chaturvedi Managing Director, Miele India

Life has become easier and hassle free because of technological advancements that have crawled into our lives seamlessly. I don’t think anyone would ever like to abandon such handiness. The future of appliances like ours is bright and promising. The present Indian is experimental and believes in being a trendsetter. Miele, which has technology as its backbone has only surpassed itself over all these years and is making lives easier, simpler and luxuriously calmer. For instance our recently launched Generation 6000 series in India flaunts the pioneering M-Touch technology which provides our customers with a familiar user interface like that of smartphones/iPhones. Since our inception in India in 2008, we have seen a considerable increase in the inclination of people towards Miele novelties for one major reason their passion for a certain lifestyle. And till date we are only seeing this passion hike up by leaps and bounds. Innovations which were new yesterday are weary tomorrow and for passionate people who get a high out of technology and style that is so astonishingly smart even in its minute details, there is always a scope to be wanting for more.

What is the chief advantage that stainless steel as a material used in a modular kitchen offers in comparison to the prevalent and popular materials such as laminates or MDF? As a countertop, stainless steel is the most hygienic and food-friendly surface and is also durable for a lifetime when used for kitchen cabinets. As far as the finish is concerned, stainless steel is a modern and globally used material for durability and aesthetic enhancement. It’s also 100% water resistant, therefore there is no sagging or cabinets falling off the joints.

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Tom Joseph Vice President - Sales & Engineering, Jindal Steel - Arttd’inox

The terrace garden - a bamboo screen and green turf with peripheral stone seating takes you far away from the urban city. The conference room and dining seats blend into the setting.


The architectural firm Samanvay is led primarily by the principle of an integration of functions, materials and ideas. The team expresses its ethos in a script that responds directly to the need for a functional design and the use of natural and reused materials. Text By K Parvathy Menon Photographs Courtesy Pooja Kedia, courtesy EssTeam and Urban Initiatives Home Review June 2014


“Samanvaya’, ‘Pratibimba’, ‘Charitra’, ‘Thathya’, ‘Prakasha’ and ‘Vismaya’ these words sound like chants from an ancient script, but in fact they describe the essence of the office building of Essteam, an architectural and urban design practice based in Surat, Gujarat. The five storied building houses two diverse functions and the harmonious coexistence of these two different programs architecturally gave the building its name ‘Samanvay’ which means synchronisation.

Note the ceiling lights in the principle architect’s cabin. Designed by the team themselves they let light flow through the plumbing lines. The A class GI pipes along with their entire repertoire of elbows, couplers and tee junctions become construction blocks for illumination.

The design studios at the fourth and fifth floor are private, restricted spaces, planned keeping three points in mind - flexible services, ample daylight and abundant storage.

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An architect’s office is not only his pride, but is a space that also showcases his craft. Many a times it is the first impression of the office space that clearly conveys the work ethos of the practice to the client. The first look of the building shows a three part design treatment that highlights the unique quality of each material used in its natural form. Architect Snehal Shah, Essteam founder, says, “The first challenge we faced was to functionally resolve and architecturally express the co-existence of two separate entities in one building. The boutique required blank display walls and artificial light while the architect’s office needed ample day light, abundant storage, design studios and meeting rooms.” The design team started by placing the service block at the rear end; in the process getting clear usable floor area sans obstructions. Then the team designed the lower part of the building, housing the boutique, with blank walls of concrete and copper, while the upper office floors were given strip windows. The terrace crowns the structure where bamboo makes a finale statement. This reflects in the elevation, which the architects describe as ‘pratibimba’. Explaining the term, Snehal Shah tells us, “Today’s society worships superficiality and promotes mediocrity. So, with a degree of sarcasm and sincerity we decided to distort reality and give it strange proportions, gaudy colour schemes, meaningless orientations and so on.”

Placed on the terrace, the conference room is lined with cement sheet strips. A look at the bamboo screened terrace garden and one may be forgiven for thinking that you are nowhere near the city.

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Upon stepping into the Essteam office, the most evident aspect grabbing our attention is the clear division between the public spaces laid out on the lower floor and the restricted upper floors where the design studios are set up. This apparent separation of zones was in direct response to a common complaint voiced by the staff, ‘when clients come, there is too much distraction and interruption.’ As we move inside, the term ‘Charitra’ becomes self explanatory. ‘Honesty in material as well as spirit’ an Essteam motto is clearly visible in the layout, material choice and textural qualities. Their mission scripted on the wall is the welcoming note at the threshold of the space, mostly dominated by the light brown shades of the partition which bestows a warm and welcoming appeal. Giving the office exclusivity are quirky details - a manifestation of innumerable ideas that impart the ‘vismaya’ factor, or as the team describes it: ‘an assimilation of elements of surprise and admiration’.

The meeting rooms use mirrors to give the illusion of vastitude. Note how the windows are designed to filter in light from the top and bottom.

Browsing around, another quality that comes to the fore is the sustainability factor. Pretty early on, the team decided to make Samnvaya ‘a zero-wastage building’. They elaborate further, “This meant that any waste generated during the construction had to be consumed in doing up the interiors of our office. This was a real challenge and it pushed us to the limit to bring out the best in us.”


The biggest wastage, the shuttering material was reused to create peripheral storage bands, while pinewood strips donned the role of partition walls. Empty tin containers became personal mailboxes after a dash of paint. Even the stone waste was reused as peripheral seating on the terrace and in the toilets.

Another waste management project that is almost art - the unusable pieces of reinforcement steel were welded into an artistic mesh to become the staircase railing and the entrance door to the office.

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A fallen palm tree was used to make a dining table and chairs on the terrace which clearly is the epitome of ‘zerowaste’. Bamboos that formed the scaffolding were cleaned and tied together to becoming the parapet crowning the structure and performing the dual duty of a privacy screen and shading device.


The Essteam office is much like the Matryoshka or Russian nesting doll, opening more dramatic elements each time one looks at it. The space is not a random adaptation of design, but a well articulated detailed plan that catered to all facets of structure. Architect Snehal Shah and his team at Essteam have indelibly presented their own space in a language that clearly spells out their ‘mantra’ and approach to architecture.

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The store is flanked by a petite wooden gate and huge potted plants; this outer area acts as a buffer between the full glass windows of the store and the street.

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Retail Therapy

The Merry Confluence Art transcends all boundaries. A person who can design a fine-looking piece of furniture will also appreciate the magic of a painting. Why compartmentalise the beautiful things that creatives have to offer? It was in this spirit that Teatro Dhora was born in the city of Jaipur.

Text By Dhanishta Shah Photographs Aavriti Jain and Siddharth Daspan

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The gallery with the birdbath exhibits old and new photographs and paintings.

The brainchild of designers Aavriti Jain and Siddharth Daspan, owners of clothing and lifestyle label Dhora, Teatro Dhora means “Theatre Dhora”. It is a stage or a platform for artists and art lovers to meet, collaborate, create and appreciate. “We see no difference in any of the art forms. This makes it easy for an artist to be able to design and construct a piece – be it garments, photographs, furniture, paintings or even songs. This got us to create a space where we could compile all art forms,” say the duo.

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The entire arrangement looks crowded and yet organised. The natural light streaming through the large windows is a big plus.

The store spans 2200 sq. feet with a 70 sq. feet outer area as a veranda. This outer area sets the tone for the comfortable and welcoming atmosphere of the store. Flanked by a petite wooden gate and huge potted plants, this area cushions the full glass wall-like windows of the store from the street. The customer enters into an expansive area where abundant natural light streams in from the huge windows. The arrangement of the store is poetic, to say the least. It is as if there is a story to every corner. There are some striking memorable areas, such as the small passage overlooking the sun, which has been turned into a gallery.

“The gallery with the birdbath exhibits our collection of old and new photographs and paintings. It’s just to give the space our little personal touch and make it homely,” say the duo. It is this space with all its photographs that is the favourite corner of the designers. After all, each photograph tells a story. Another admirable area is where the simple string tied across a wall acts as a support for hanging shawls. The colourful shawls against the white wall create a charming and organic look.

The products span a diverse range encompassing various aspects of art.

Bigger pieces of furniture such as tables and cabinets act as surfaces of display for smaller products that have been arranged using clever and resourceful planning. While the walls serve as a backdrop for fabrics and frames, the floor too is not left far behind. It rightly acts as a canvas for the carpets! The entire arrangement looks full and yet organised. At one glance, it is as if little nooks and corners in the store have their own individual taste and personalities, and are cosy units in themselves. Every fortnight the arrangement of the displays in the shop is changed.

The walls, floor and the bigger pieces of furniture all work together to hold the various items.

Aavriti and Siddharth strongly believe in not following a colour scheme and hence the walls are white. This in fact enhances the displays that are put up against the wall. The flooring is patchy, and quite charmingly so. There are patches of wood, mixed marbles and tiles. One can naturally expect the products to span a diverse range encompassing various aspects of art. Not surprisingly, the store has furniture, photographs, installations and paintings, music albums, books, apparel and home decor in addition to leather accessories and jewellery by Dhora.

The designers believe that the decor of a store should make a customer want to stay in the space longer. It should make one feel at ease. The décor of Teatro Dhora does justice to this belief. The old world charm and relaxed attitude that it oozes, makes one feel completely at home. More than anything else, it fulfils a need to surround people with art and keep exploring and discovering various art forms.

Curating the products is important, but they do not really find it taxing. “There is no trick to it really. We do it, as we like it. It’s completely by what we come across and discover,” they state. While the jewellery, leather accessories and clothes are designed and manufactured in-house, the other products are sourced from warehouses and artists.

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The macro proportioned light fixtures that hang like tulips in the rain are created out of recycled loudspeakers popularly known as “Bhompoos� in India.

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When it was a question of creating an innately soothing and peaceful space, such as a salon cum spa, M:OFA Studio just went ahead and decoded the essence of ‘Monsoon’ into architectural notes through a range of colours, textures, lighting features and design strategies.

The first showers of monsoon, like heavenly blessings, never fail to wash away the summer heat and dust and open up every pore to the heady smell of the awakening of life. It urges us to close our eyes, breathe in and simply revel in the calmness that sets in. This magic and its myriad experiences that touch us in this season, have been translated into an architectural narrative, in the aptly named Monsoon Salon and Spa, by New Delhi based design practice M:OFA Studio. Located in a high end neighbourhood, the M:OFA team has designed this salon and spa to foster a naturally soothing environment that easily transports city stressed minds far away from the loud metropolis. Says Manish Gulati, Principal Architect at M:OFA, “the brief was to create a brand identity for Monsoon Salons and position them with a unique language concurrent with their work philosophy on a budget of Rs 2,500 per square feet maximum.”

Text By K Parvathy Menon Photographs Manish Gulati Courtesy M:OFA Studio Pvt Ltd Home Review June 2014


Suspended steel shelves create what the team describes as, “a feeling of openness.�

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Stepping into the salon, our senses are bombarded with a jumble of colours, textures and fixtures. There is nothing voguish about the space; instead the overwhelmingly earthy and rustic appearance makes one feel at home instantly. Trying to explain the spatial quality in ‘Monsoon’, Architect Manish Gulati says, “Monsoon in India has multiple connotations - an onset of cool winds after the scorching summer heat, tinkling of the droplets of rain, and the cleansing phenomenon that reveals the purest in nature. Pure and unadulterated. It is this experience of the monsoon showers washing away all grime and leaving behind a cleansed, sparkling, gleaming, rejuvenated feel that we have tried to imbibe in the spirit of the interior spaces for the Monsoon salons.” ‘Pure and unadulterated’ is also translated through materials being used in their pure form. Epoxy flooring and exposed concrete generate an interior of a shell like feel, where all other elements take a desired complimentary form and grow. Standing in the large open planned interior space, one cannot miss the way the design team has used partitions and shelves to segment the volume into three separate sections. Cordoning the styling stations and the wet area i.e. the manicure, pedicure and shampoo stations, are bright red MS Jaali partitions, on which the word ‘monsoon’ in different font sizes becomes art.


The word ‘Monsoon’ in different font sizes are reminiscent of falling drops of rain on a glass pane is seen on the screens.

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Undoubtedly the best portion of Monsoon Salon and Spa is the spa area accessed by a dark dim lit corridor, walled with railway sleeper partitions and exposed curved brick. The M:OFA team have expertly used brick work with controlled lighting to set up a lacuna aimed to relax every sense of the human body.

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Each section has a distinct identity, like the wet zones are marked by exposed brick walls painted white and accented with circular red patches. These along with shelves made of rough cut wood planks reclaimed from shipping pallets add to the ‘unadulterated’ character of the space. Staying true to the design ethos, the ceiling is kept devoid of false panels and frilly accents.


The design team at M:OFA have used materials, textures and both natural and artificial lighting to create the perfect mood setting requisite of any good salon and spa. “To adhere to a budget almost 50 % lower than contemporary market rates for salons,” explains the team, “we used recycled shipping pallets, railway sleepers, MS instead of stainless steel and so on. Keeping to the industrial look we provided finishes with sealants instead of plaster and paint. Exposed RCC and brickwork and exposed ducting have helped tremendously in keeping the costs down; the same materials also came together as a composition to create a unique identity.” The M:OFA team once again proves that ‘not treading the beaten path’ can indeed be a delightful and rewarding experience.

The spa is as rustic and earthy as it gets with recycled shipping pallets and exposed brick walls.

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VALE WHERE The third largest city of Spain, Valencia has the River Turia flowing on one side and the warm waters of the Mediterranean Sea lapping at its other end. Starting of as a Roman settlement, the city has changed many hands in its 2000 plus years of existence. Valencia’s numerous historical and cultural attractions have made it one of Spain’s most popular tourist destinations in recent years.

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The festivity of the city’s patron St. Hose signals the start of the spring season. The cafes spill onto the street and the restaurants open their terraces. This is the best season to visit Valencia. Winter is mild, yet not amiable enough to enjoy the outdoors and summer drives up the temperature and the humidity.

With the Cathedral, the Torres de Serano, the Llotja de la Seda and the likes that speak of the city’s rich heritage on one side and the avantgarde City of Arts and Sciences on the other, Valencia’s skyline boasts of a wide spectrum of attractions. The art galleries and the vibrant festivals through the year add to the city’s charm.

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HISTORY IN THE MAKING The restoration and renovation of the Palace of the Marquis of Caro started in 2005. The breaking down and the building up went on for seven long years within the old mansion and it was only in 2012 that its doors were thrown open and the red carpet was rolled out to welcome the first guests at Caro Hotel. A walk through the Hotel is a trip through Valencia’s past. Great care has been taken to preserve the little bits of history that were uncovered during restoration, and to integrate them into the current design of the Hotel. An ancient Roman mural, the old Arabic defense wall, Gothic arches, column bases are in perfect harmony with the contemporary design elements.

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The guest rooms are categorised based on the purpose they served in the 19th century. The room called ‘The Palace Kitchen’ still has the stone steps that led to the larder. The room ‘Old Tower’ is in the erstwhile Arabic watchtower; the arches, leading to the tower are a part of the décor of the room. The inclusion of some of the erstwhile architectural features of the original palace in the décor has brought in an element of drama to this independent boutique hotel. The design approach stands out in its endeavour to not replicate the historic elements, but instead to leave them to exist with the hotel’s new personality.

AROUND THE WORLD Is it possible to see the London Eye, Eiffel Tower, Statue of Liberty, Sydney Opera House, and the Tokyo Skytree all in the span of one evening? Yes, it is, at the Mon Gastro bar of Valencia. This tapas bar cum fine dining venue is designed to appeal to citizens of the world. Murals of the most iconic buildings from across the globe take up the wall space and extend all the way to the ceiling. A classic Chesterfield sofa, a chair made of recycled corrugated cardboard, leather bar stools and chairs from the 50’s all find their place and contribute to the restobar’s eclectic ambience.

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The skyline that was once dominated by steeples, arches and spires underwent an alteration in 1998. A gigantic cement and glass structure, shaped like an eyelid, was unveiled to the citizens. It was the Hemisferic, the first building of the City of Science and Arts. Over the next decade, more towering structures came up in the City that occupies a surface area of 350,000 square metres. Housing a science museum, an oceanographic aquarium, open-air art gallery, exhibition spaces, cinema, planetarium and many other spaces. The City has lived up to its role of a cultural entertainment centre and in a short span of time since its inception, become the most popular tourist attraction of Valencia.

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CHILD’S PLAY Illustrations of children with fun call-outs greet the shopper at the entrance of Piccino, a boutique for children’s clothing in Valencia. Butterflies in a burst of colours escape out of a painted birdcage and flit across the ceiling. Line drawings of vintage furniture serve as a backdrop for the shelves piled with clothes. Vivid-hued silhouettes of a clothes mannequin, scissors, mirrors and other tailoring accessories offset the monochromatic colour scheme. The lines between reality and fantasy blur and the result is a picture perfect ambience that makes for a pleasing shopping experiece. Text By Himali Kothari

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Curved walls, peek-a-boo windows, bright colours and hanging pockets from the ceiling – these are pages out of Grimm’s Fairy Tales or Arabian Nights that find their way into a school that redefines a child’s domain.

Text By K Parvathy Menon Photographs Courtesy Anand Jaju

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The entrance porch extends itself outward; it is highlighted in bright pink and welcomes its users into the building.

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From afar, it’s the mural of coalescing alphabets on the elevation that grabs our attention, and as we move closer, the shocking pink entrance porch is an invitation that just can not to be ignored. This is Planet Kids; a school designed by Bengaluru based design firm Cadence whose principal architects are Narendra Pirgal, Smaran Mallesh and Vikram Rajashekar (famed for their design process that looks to create experiences that are strong statements of unique identity.) The school is located in an urban neighbourhood, hence due to space constraints, instead of a lateral span, the program is spread vertically over five floors and includes the terrace and basement. Giving such a space, a child friendly appeal was a challenge, but the designers have worked the vertical ascent to their favour with the clever use of architectural tools like colours and negative-positive spatial dynamics.


Architect Smaran Mallesh explains, “We saw each program requirement as an opportunity to create a holistic world for a child. The colourful assemblage of different rooms and experiences is connected with a staircase and a special void. This void aids in a visual and spatial interaction between the different levels.” ‘Childhood fantasies’ - the underlying theme reaches out to all, the moment one steps into the premises. The angular pink porch which urges you to say the words, ‘khul ja sim sim’ takes you into the reception where the structure bends and folds to form the reception desk and seats for the visitors.


Using a material palette comprising of brick, ferrocement and concrete as the base canvas, the Cadence team has used colours - shocking pink and bright green, burst and scatter their aura onto the grey background, just like bubbles of energy. Also, points out architect Smaran Mallesh, “The colour green compensates for the lack of a naturally green environment, and makes references to zoos and forests and the colour pink evokes empathy and creates a calming atmosphere in the otherwise charged environment.” A staircase and a central void connect the five floors, and all the classrooms open their vivid worlds into both these elements, much like an architectural promenade.

The favourite space of the Cadence team is the atrium, which not only helps in circulation but also in spatial connectivity and an interaction between the different floors.

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Safety was a major challenge, but the team brushed past it by fencing all the staircases and corridors with vertical bars; horizontal rails were not used in order to negate the risk of children climbing over them. Apart from not constricting the space visually, these railings in combination with the green shades existing all around, provide a zoo-like feel. While explaining the underlying theme, Architect Vikram Rajashekar stresses, “to execute our theme of ‘myriad child fantasies’, we used the collage technique to bring these fantasies together, a particular form representing a discrete experience.” We notice that in the different classrooms a distinct spatial ambience can be experienced whether it is the library, the activity spaces on the terrace or the multi-purpose hall. The Cadence team also studied the required spatial qualities for a particular activity and then translated it into the form of the space, thereby giving every room its unique identity. Angles and curves break the inflexibility associated with conventional school designs and along with winding corridors, wiggly forms, colours and atypical fenestrations create an exploratory, fun-filled atmosphere for the children.


“The shelves and false ceiling details are highlighted in pink; these provide a sense of playful freedom that flows and animates the space” elucidates Architect Mallesh. In the play area, we find curving walls and pink coloured suspended false ceiling pockets; the team describes these as, ‘pockets of different volumes relating to a child’s sensibility of spatial scale.’ An anthropometric scale is visible even in the fenestrations that deviate from typical linear shapes. Interspersed on the green walls, the circular and ingenious profiles seem to be right out of a fairy tale castle; these perform the dual tasks of accenting the space and letting in sunlight.

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A childhood fantasy takes form as a collage of letters in the elevation, with holes in ‘e’, ‘o’ and the like - shapes become window openings.

A happy school space, abundant with energy and inspiring creativity at every turn, is the ultimate utopian world for a child. The Cadence team started off with a brief that required them to ‘design a primary school in a tight site’, and ended up with a colourful school that mimics childhood fantasies. In this world of new generation smart schools, this is an example of how a ‘child friendly school’ can easily be a reality in spite of space constraints.

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The new Energinet office building has been designed as a compact building to minimise loss of energy resources.

Two Of A Kind

Two projects by Denmark based Henning Larsen Architects make a definitive mark on the country’s very environmentally conscientious design scene.

Text By Himali Kothari Photographs Courtesy Jesper Ray, Realdania Byg (Adaptable House) and Kontraframe (Energinet) Home Review June 2014


In the office building the workspaces promote interaction, knowledge sharing, and spontaneous meetings.

Design with knowledge is the overall objective at Henning Larsen Architects. This structure meets these objectives in several ways.

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The lower level houses the meeting areas while the second level is dedicated to permanent workstations.

The year was 1976. Most of the world had not yet woken up to concepts like sustainable architecture, green living and energy saving buildings. Denmark on the other hand had put together the initial rules for energy-efficient buildings. Over the last few years the importance of responsible design has only magnified and Denmark has further fine tuned its policies on environment friendly buildings. The goal set for 2020 raises the bar even higher - energy consumption of buildings has to be reduced by 75% as compared to 2008 and this mandate encouraged Danish architects to develop solutions that are increasingly energy positive. Henning Larsen Architects is one such landmark firm. Though an architecture company with global presence, the company’s head office in Copenhagen gives it deep-set Danish roots. Designs that are founded on social responsibility and which achieve reduced life-cycle costs are a trademark of Henning Larsen Architects.

An Office With A Soul The company Energinet transmits gas and electricity and thus is perhaps in the best position to understand the importance of renewable energy. For their new office in Ballerup, Denmark the company approached Henning Larsen Architects, with a clear brief “an office building where workspaces would promote interaction, knowledge sharing and spontaneous meetings. It would have to be environmentally sustainable as well.” The project team at Henning Larsen Architects envisioned a building with a high degree of flexibility. The Energinet building is a two storey structure. The lower level which houses meeting facilities has an open layout. All the exterior walls at this level are made of glass and reflect the lush landscape of the surroundings.

The top level is dedicated to the permanent workstations. But, the most striking feature here is the atrium that brings the building together. It is also the favourite feature of the design team. The atrium in the building measures 5.5 meters from floor to ceiling. It functions as an open and active meeting place with connections to all the offices. Over and above the design of the atrium has resulted in plenty of daylight filtering which reduces the need for artificial lighting in the day and further saves energy. In response to Energinet’s requirements, Henning Larsen Architects set about to achieve the lowest possible energy use in this building and for this all possible elements were taken into consideration. “Design with knowledge is our overall objective at Henning Larsen Architects. This structure meets these objectives in several ways. It reduces energy-consumption and is also socially sustainable with optimal working conditions for the employees,” they say.

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The high atrium enables daylight to infiltrate into the interiors of the minimalist structure negating the need of artificial lighting in the day.

An important aspect was to tackle overheating during summer, and yet, maximise the availability of daylight. Though the office building is compact, daylight has unrestricted access to the very heart of its interiors - this has been made via increased heights in the atrium. Sunlight protection on the facades shields the spaces from the direct impact of the sun and the indirect flow from the atrium ensures well-lit spaces. The green roof serves two purposes. One, it facilitates slow percolation and evaporation, thus reducing the pressure on the public sewage system; two, the rainwater harvested through the roof is redirected towards various uses in the office. In addition, the incorporation of solar panels, ground water cooling and heat pumps ensure a substantial reduction in the annual energy consumption and low maintenance costs.

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The team at Henning Larsen Architects also accounted for the client’s future needs in their design plan, “An office needs change constantly. The openness of the first floor lends the office a high degree of flexibility. Lightweight walls and simple reusable elements make it easy to potentially change the interior of the building in the future and in a relatively hassle-free way.” At Henning Larsen Architects, social viability of a building is also given its due importance, “There is a very strong tradition of putting people first when designing all kinds of building typologies in Denmark. The human scale is a Danish architectural term and is integrated into most of Danish design, city development, and architecture.” believes the firm.

The 146 sq. m. house is designed to cater to a single family but has the propensity to adapt to changing requirements

In The Name Of Change The only constant in life is, change. A home that starts with a couple getting together evolves into a space for a family. Families constantly expand and contract. The Adaptable House in the Danish town of Nyborg seeks to provide a space solution that incorporates this inherent evolution. The Adaptable House is a part of a large development project financed by Denmark based property company Realdania Byg. The vision of this project was to create six single family homes with minimum carbon emission - in their very creation as well as in their lifetime. Of these six, the Adaptable House was the conception of Henning Larsen Architects.

The team at Henning Larsen Architects developed the concept of the Adaptable House to tackle the issue of inflexibility in architecture which really does not take into account our changing needs as we move from childhood to old age. The designers belive “if you can avoid rebuilding or extending your house when children are born or move out you will not harm the environment with building materials and waste.� Likewise the design philosophy of this single family structure revolved around the fact that it had to accommodate requirements of space or a simple aesthetic change with minimal interventions.

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The Adaptable House stands largely on the pillars of adaptability and reduction in carbon dioxide emissions.

The plan of the Adaptable House is such that in making most of these alterations the need for new materials is negligible and in many cases a changed spatial and functional layout can replace complicated modifications or wide-ranging extensions. This is made possible largely because many of the components of the house can be demounted and extended without destructing existing components, thus saving on both time and resources. Also, the usability of the dismantled components in the new spaces reduces wastage of resources. For the Henning Larsen Architects team the Adaptable House works as a project in its entirety.

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Besides the obvious ecological savings through restricting wastage of resources, the Adaptable House also manages to reduce carbon dioxide consumption in comparison to a normal house. This reduction in emission is achieved not only in the building phase but also continues in terms of annual savings for heating and maintenance.

While sustainability was the most important design criteria, the team did not want to sacrifice on the aesthetic or comfort aspects either.

While sustainability was the most important design criteria, the team did not want to sacrifice on the aesthetic or comfort aspects either, “Yes, we wanted to create a house made out of flexible components but at the same time also a house that is actually inhabitable and not just a great idea or a concept,” say the designers For Henning Larsen Architects, this project stands tall in the Danish skyline, “In Denmark we constantly establish higher standards for the sustainability of new buildings and renovation work and demand innovation and improvement in every aspect of sustainable construction. The Adaptable House completely meets these standards.”

Home Review June 2014


Ekobo is an eco-responsible company that designs contemporary household products from one of the most rapidly renewable natural resource namely, bamboo. The company’s goal is to develop a sustainable business for artisanal communities by combining design and traditional know-how. This is done in the way of eco courses. With their wide range of elegantly designed products socially and environmentally responsible consumption is encouraged. Since its inception in 2003, Ekobo has become a brand to reckon with in interior design. Ekobo now offers more than 350 environmentally friendly, fair and aesthetic products that can be used in the entire house.

The Vietnamese particularly have been making bamboo products in this way since ancient times. It takes about 45-60 days of meticulous work in creating each product depending on the complexity of the design.

Ekobo develops products that are contemporary in style but prefers to use the know-how and traditional techniques followed by artisans. In this way, the artisans can practice their original profession while improving their present living conditions. Skills are divided between specialists from several villages. Some are experts at creating different forms using bamboo and others are proficient in lacquering them. Ekobo strives to reduce the number of intermediaries like the use of other processing plants, local agents, exporters etc. Instead Ekobo prefers to work directly with the artisan families and creates small workshops in the villages where bamboo is grown. This ensures higher incomes for the craftsmen. Communication with the workers and stringent quality control of the handmade products goes a long way in creating exquisite products with a universal appeal.

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RAW E 06e s

Playful, contemporary and seriously good-looking. The Raw-Edges design studio consistently comes up with the most heart-stopping designs. Get set to ooh and aah. Text By Chryselle D’Silva Dias Photographs Courtesy The Designer

Home Review June 2014


There are some designers that bring you sheer joy every time you come across one of their products. The characteristic elements of which come together in a unique way – right blend of colours, playful shapes and a certain delight in creating that comes right through in the finished product. When a chair makes you giddy with glee, you know there’s something special going on. Designers Yael Mer & Shay Alkalay are part of that rare breed of product designers that breathe dazzling new life into old shapes. They graduated from the Royal College of Art in 2006/2007 and have since received several awards including The British Council Talented Award, iF Gold Award, Dutch Design Award, Wallpaper* Design Award 2009 and the Elle Decoration International Design Award for best furniture of 2008-09. Their clients include Cappellini, Established & Sons, Moroso, Kvadrat, Stella McCartney and Arco among others. Their London-based design studio is called Raw-Edges.


The Volume Series

Raw-Edges broke the mould right from the beginning with the award-winning ‘Stack’, a set of drawers for Established & Sons (2007). These stackable drawers are irregular in shape and height and can be stacked to create a tower of drawers which can be pulled and pushed in different directions. Their designs for furniture have consistently been unusual and slightly whacky at first glance. The Volume series (2007) boasted of seats made from “big sheets of paper or wallpaper” over a polyurethane foam base. The seats can be moulded to create a shape of choice - an intriguing prospect for space-challenged homes.

Rocking Slipper

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Continuing to experiment with shape and form is the Rocking Slipper (2006) chair/shoe. Is it something to put in your living room or closet? Perhaps both. Made of wood, metal and felt, this hybrid was developed under the title of ‘Body Extension’ where a “wearable item gets almost to the territory of an independent product.” Also startling in its simplicity and elegance are the Selvedge and Kenny chair. Two different coloured yarns were woven perpendicular into the innovative Kvadrat Hallingdal 65 textile resulting in a fabric where more of the woof’s colour was exposed. The fabric was stretched to the structure of the armchair resulting in a curvaceous chair that makes your heart skip a beat.

Selvedge and Kenny chair

Pleated stool

Similarly, the Pleated stool is a sensuous piece of furniture that borrows heavily from fashion. Raw-Edges folded and re-folded DuPont Tyvek to create a “springy, 3D cushion” filled with soft polyurethane foam. Another unconventional design is the Tailored Wood Bench and Stool made of oak veneer filled with foam. Each piece is unique and made to fit the user and the end result looks like fabric draped over furniture.

Tailored Wood Bench and Stool

Home Review June 2014


The Pivot cabinet is yet another intriguing shape. The solid wood cabinet has tall legs and two drawers. What’s different? “The drawers can hinge, making it possible to open both at the same time, which is impossible with a conventional set of drawers.” Handy when you’re looking for that elusive set of keys.

Pivot cabinet

The experiments continue with ‘Hammock’, a double-size hammock made out of five laser-cut Alcantara sheets in different colours. Alcantara is an innovative flat material that can be cut and layered together. The designers compare the process to screen-printing where a colourful result can be achieved by adding many layers together. Bibliophiles will be familiar with the Booken, a bookcase made of books. Born out of the idea that people don’t usually re-read the novels they have on their shelves, the books were used, instead, as a support surface.




Photography Stack by Mike Golgwater and Pivot by Petrik Pantze

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Raw-Edges also has several intriguing designs for lighting including the Pinha, a fun hanging lamp with a outer shell made of cork. The user can customise the lamp by choosing the shade and the direction and range of the light. More recently, the Smartlight combines a bedside table light and smart-phone holder/charger. Five intelligent and quirky designs make it easy to read in bed and never hunt for your phone in the dark again. The design studio has also successfully experimented with every day products such as the very-ignored Milk Carton. Percentages of fat in the milk can be identified visually by the shape of the cardboard carton, rather than the fine print on it.

Milk Carton

Along with product design, Raw-Edges also creates interiors, flooring (including a colourful herringbone parquet floor) and products like Tex, a multi-coloured ceramic tile inspired by the texture of textiles. Raw-Edges show, with their colourful and intelligent designs, that it is possible to create useful products with a seriously playful bent to them.


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The original mosaiced floor and the roof with its peeling paint help maintain the venue’s ties with its history.

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An erstwhile military chapel in Belgium shines in its new role as a haute cuisine restaurant after a makeover by Amsterdam-based Piet Boon Studio.

Text By Himali Kothari Photographs By Richard Powers and Rahi Rezvani Styling: Piet Boon Styling Home Review June 2014



With Baroque arches, a stained glass window and a crucifix atop the roof, the façade of The Jane restaurant, appears more a place to say grace before a meal, than to sit down for a meal itself. When Michelin-star chef Sergio Herman and Chef Nick Bril zeroed in on this venue for their fine dining meets rock ’n roll restaurant in Antwerp (Belgium), their brief to Piet Boon Studio was clear: transform the church of the former military hospital into a high-end fine dining restaurant, without losing the authenticity of the site. Chief architect Piet Boon says, “Every project we work on has its own charm and sometimes unexpected obstacles. Working with old buildings is exciting, but full of surprises.” The team’s aim at The Jane was to preserve as much of the original chapel and restore only what was absolutely necessary. The best example of this is the conservation of the original arched ceiling. Its aged colours and peeling paintwork represent the chapel’s past while the spotless floors and spanking new furniture and accessories narrate the story that is about to begin. The original altar has been assigned a new role; it is now the most important element of a restaurant, that being the kitchen. A glass partition holds the sounds and aromas in but at the same time allows guests to witness their food being created. Another ‘window’ into the chapel’s past, quite literally, is the stained glass windows.

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At first glance, they appear similar to those that adorn churches across Europe, depicting Biblical themes. But, a closer look paints a different picture. Designed by Job Smeets and Nynke Tynagel of Studio Job, the 500 unique panels are a mishmash of various figures; images of Jesus, crucifixes, devils, skulls and babies represent the building’s past life and others like cakes, ice cream cones, apple cores, croissants and spatulas speak of its present. The windows flood the interiors with daylight and also infuse playfulness into the elegant ambience.


Ask the architect about his favourite element in the restaurant and he dithers like a mother being asked to pick her favourite child. “Everything is just in perfect harmony in The Jane: the service, the staff, the food and design. It is what we had envisioned it to be and wished for, but it turned out even better than we expected.” says Boon. While it is apparent that there are many elements strewn across the space that demand attention, there is one that pulls the eye away from the delectable food under the nose and up to the ceiling to the enormous bespoke chandelier. Designed by a Beirut firm, PSLab the light fixture weighs over 800 kg. and measures 12 by 9 metres, the light fixture has a hundred and fifty spokes branching out of its central core with each one fitted with a light at its end. The chandelier, the customised stained glass windows, the vintage ceiling…are some of the many distinctive features of the restaurant. But, what makes the entire experience appetising is the harmonious and subtle manner in which all these components come together, much like the flavours of the food that is dished out from the kitchens of The Jane.

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In its 30 years of experience of designing across the globe, Piet Boon Studio has stuck to its principle of conceptualising its design based on the site, environment, function and culture. Boon says, “Our signature can be seen in strong lines and symmetry, innovative solutions for the optimum use of space and light and a harmony in materials, textures, colours, shape and scale.�

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Antique planters, cheerful flowers and palm trees bring a flavour of the Mediterranean to Arizona.

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AN OASIS OF CALM Phoenix, Arizona based landscape architect Chad Robert creates magic in the desert. His firm turned this private garden into a conversation starter with lots of local flavour.

Text By Chryselle D’Silva Dias Photographs Courtesy Todor Spasov Home Review June 2014


Flanked by two large Canary Island Date Palms and cheerful blooms,the carved main door becomes an elegant and welcoming element in the design scheme.

The best gardens incorporate three things into their design - native plants, living space and space for contemplation. Award-winning landscape architect Chad Robert uses all three elements with great success in his designs. Based in Phoenix, Arizona, USA, Robert’s designs consistently reflect local history, tradition and climatic conditions. The Spanish Mediterranean style of architecture is prominent in Arizona. White stucco walls, red-tiled roofs, adobe bricks, Moorish-influenced tiles and stone work appear throughout the region. Because the climate of the Spanish Mediterranean and Arizona are similar, plants that grow in Spain also do well in Arizona.

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The pool spills underneath the ramada with its neat outdoor living and dining area, a fireplace, and a television to boot.

You will find all of these in Robert’s projects, with an increasing emphasis on sustainable and environmentally-aware landscaping. For this project spanning 2.4 acres, the architects were faced with a complete remodel of the gardens of this private property.

More palms regally line up in the driveway, creating an impressive first impression. The simple but classic tile and mosaic pebbled paths were inspired by the streets of Cordoba, Spain and along with the large antique accent earthenware, set the tone for the rest of the house.

Only a small portion of the original garden remained. 90% of all existing trees and specimen plants were retained or were relocated on the site. The entry to the house was revamped with two large Canary Island Date Palms flanking the carved main door. The Palms are surrounded by cheerful red Germaniums, purple Petunias and Lamb’sEars making the entry a welcoming space.

The entrance to the residence leads off to two private courtyards, one on each side. Each courtyard is decorated in a distinct style, with a distinct purpose. One has a strong Moorish theme, with a white stone Moorish fireplace lined with adobe bricks, a fountain and covered dining terrace to enjoy the spectacular Arizonan sunsets.

Home Review June 2014


The elegant master bathroom courtyard has its own outdoor shower, fireplace and cosy seating. The flooring is a ‘carpet’ of hand-set black and white pebbles in a custom design.

The second one is the master bathroom courtyard with its own outdoor shower, fireplace and cosy seating. The flooring is a ‘carpet’ of hand-set black and white pebbles in designs created on site. The rear garden was completely remodelled to include a new swimming pool and spa with Moroccan accents. The addition of a ‘ramada’ (a covered terrace or porch) created a dramatic focal point for the backyard. The stone roof of the ramada is surrounded by customised wrought-iron railings and includes a fire-pit and seating to take in the stunning mountain views.

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Below, the swimming pool with its diving board spills under the ramada, into the large patio where armchairs and stone flooring promise relief from the hot sun so typical of Arizona. Swimmers can stay in the pool and have a chat with those outside, leading to an impromptu conversation area. A fireplace and television increase opportunities for socialising by the pool. Potted plants in large containers sourced add drama and a charming touch of green.

This Moroccan-inspired patio has a fireplace, fountain and sitting area to enjoy the beautiful Arizonan evenings outside. The juxtaposition of the various colours, shapes and textures is interesting and eye-catching. Home Review June 2014


Subtle lighting highlights the plants and welcomes visitors under the overhanging branches of the palms.

Three new outdoor fireplaces were included in the renovation and a new BBQ bar sets the stage to show off the chefhomeowner’s gourmet cooking. With their focus on sustainable and economical landscaping, the team filled the gardens with hardy, native plants. Citrus plants, Date palms, Mediterranean fan palms and other plants from the Spanish Mediterranean region are paired with native plants of the Sonoran desert. The team also made significant changes to the original gardens to make the new design sustainable. These included removing 20% of the lawn to conserve water, but still keeping enough lawn space for an active family.

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Existing water features were also modified to reduce water usage . What was once a functional space is now a remarkable multi-purpose green space that blurs the distinction between the indoors and the outdoors. With the clever and careful inclusion of several conversation areas throughout the landscape, one may choose to be close to the hubbub or to escape to a quiet corner. Thoughtful planning weaved a gentle path through this garden and instead of giving it a beginning, middle and end, a circle of sorts was created where all paths lead everywhere and yet you go exactly where you want.


By Dhara Kabaria

RECLAIM, CREATE AND REUSE During my high-school days, witnessing a blueprint of a plan getting converted into our home developed a passion in me for design and construction of spaces. The house took one and a half year to build, and I got involved in designing the entrance door, mirrors, mandir and other small items with the help of my father. By the time we shifted into our new home, I had already decided to pursue a career in design.

In 1995, I joined the CEPT University based in Ahmedabad to pursue a course in Interior Design. Here I was introduced to the alluring world of creativity. During the course, I was greatly influenced by a lecture on unfettered and fearless design ideas by Dashrath Patel. He guided my graduation thesis and during the course, he became my guide and mentor for the rest of my design journey.

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A couple of discarded chairs were converted into a couple of desireable chairs with a table for company. Similarly an old door was given a new lease of life and converted into a conference table.

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Apart from creating stools and tables we also created lamps using traditional birdcages and discarded shopping bags. Our idea of reusing and recreating was redefining itself in different ways leading to both beautiful and functional creations. Post the creation of functional products, in September 2012 I toyed with the idea of starting a workshop, which brought me in contact with Kiran Marre. Together we started ‘Alternative Workshop’ to overcome the challenge of finding a skilled and motivated workteam. Kiran has an experience of 9 years in Product Research, Development and Execution. Having our own workshop made it possible for us to take my idea of creating furniture and accessories with discarded materials into mainstream design.

FLamps Lamps created using traditional birdcages and discarded shopping bags

After 6 years of work experience, I started Studio Alternatives in 2009 along with my sister Dolly who is a professional photographer. We worked on several conventional residential projects, but at the same time we started experimenting on my ideas to develop objects and furniture from discarded materials. This led to the creation of the “Bucket Stool” which makes good use of old paint buckets and old jute bags to make the compact poufs.

Bucket Stools All you need is an old paint buckets and old jute bags

Rocking Chair The chair is made entirely from bicycle parts - all made in a bicycle repair workshop with their limited skill sets and tools

After my graduation I took up my PostGraduation course in 3D Design from the Kent institute of Art and Design, UK. During this research-based course, the topic of my research was - ‘Alternative use of materials in Design’. I supported my thesis with a live design project for a bicycle workshop. This resulted in a range of products including lamps and a rocking chair. The project won a great deal of appreciation in the institute and gave me confidence to dream big towards setting up my own firm that would work in the area of alternative use of materials.

We are also working on creating a system of acquiring scrap on a regular basis and using it to create a product line that can be manufactured using the batch production method. Last year Gunika Sharma, a student who did her internship with us worked along with us in developing a lamp series titled ‘Pipeline’. These lamps were created from PVC pipe scrap obtained from construction sites.

A Confrence Table An old door coverted into a confrence table with a dash of vibrant colours

Pipleline These lamps were created from PVC pipe scrap obtained from construction sites

The Container House The house utilised a shipping container to create a luxurious living space The Restaurant Hoarding An old discarded, broken boat restored and installed as a restaurant hoarding

Without trying to project this design philosophy as an exclusive work, we initially started using these ideas partially in all our regular interior projects. The feedback received was highly encouraging.

As we step into another day, the genesis of new products and materials continues however at Studio Alternatives, we choose and will continue to reuse and recycle as an aesthetic and intellectual choice, as it helps us in building a better and greener world.

Slowly but steadily the scale of work grew during which we also restored an old discarded, broken boat and installed it as a restaurant hoarding. In one of our recent projects, we utilised a used shipping container to create a luxurious living space.

Home Review June 2014


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The Dean Hotel belonging to ASH NYC, an interior design and real estate firm and designed by Kite Architects in New York City brings a much-needed and welcome change to the historic downtown district of Providence. It ably reflects the colourful culture and eventful history of the rough neighbourhood in an all new light. The Dean Hotel is a five star property located in the heart of the historic downtown district, Providence that has been known for not quite the right reasons. The development of the hotel has monumentally revamped not only the reputation but also urbanised the locality. Despite Providence being home to the Brown University and the Rhode Island School of Design, progress was long time coming. Downtown Providence is a changing neighbourhood that was once virtually abandoned, but since the last 20 years or so, community leaders, developers, artists and residents have been trying to figure out ways to best reuse and repopulate the area. Downtown has the good fortune of being at the very centre of the city (and region) and has a very well preserved architecture, which draws people’s imagination and creativity. Keeping that in mind, an early 20th century brick building which houses 52 rooms has been carefully restored by Kite Architects and beautifully refurbished by its Brooklyn-based owner ASH NYC, which incidentally is also a development and design firm.

Text By Namrata Joshi Photographs Courtesy The Architects Home Review June 2014


The idea behind restoring the property was to rehabilitate and create a hotel for Providence and of Providence, and capitalise upon the local authenticity that differentiates it from some bigger cities or places with more of a corporate culture. As ASH throws some light, “The foremost design philosophy was to restore an interesting architectural specimen from circa 1912. We had to peel back many layers before we could actually see what existed once. The building was built by the Episcopal Diocese and has once been everything from church housing to a Vaudeville hotel to a strip club and brothel, so there has been very interesting history to work from.” The ethos behind The Dean has been to create a space and experience that shows off the best of Providence (the preserved architecture, the industrial heritage and still-vital community of makers and creators, the artists and raw creative talent) while bringing in design, products and varied experiences that haven’t yet made it to Providence - everything from Karaoke boxes to Le Labo candles to a true old-school hotel bar.


As one steps into the Hotel, the unique features of the property are refreshing and anything but monotonous in spite of having only comfort and simplicity as the basis for the design process. ASH has been careful in making the most of the building’s handsome original features, including its mosaic tile flooring and brick façade to emulate a timeless look of sorts. The hotel encompasses an interesting assortment of custom-designed and fine vintage furniture sourced from markets in Belgium, Paris and the Netherlands. American antiques and rugs sourced from a bazar in Turkey offer a worldly and established feature with classic aesthetics.


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The light fixtures and plumbing fixtures add an in-depth character to the interiors, while retaining wood floors and five panel doors to highlight the essence of 1912.


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To steer clear from creating a replica or a relic, all of the spaces have been juxtaposed with some really modern art (mostly from RISD or Providence-affiliated artists) and contemporary angular steel furniture created in conjunction with the Steel Yard in Providence. Few of the 52 rooms and suites are alike; these include vintage pieces and artwork, locally handcrafted furniture, and custom - blended soaps and fine linens. The bed in each room also has a custom-woven, Dean-branded blanket by Brahms Mount of Maine. The Dean is situated centrally on Fountain Street in downtown Providence and is surrounded by many of the city’s best galleries, bars, restaurants, boutiques and universities. The neighbourhood was only in need of an architectural uplift, and ASH aimed to do just that - restore the best of local stuff and bring in the superlative from outside. An interactive space that is tastefully designed and uniquely structured offers a peaceful composition. The Dean Hotel integrates history and new developments with an inventive and affordable profile. It seems, they have achieved all of the above with nothing but flying colours.

Home Review June 2014



Mumbai-based Patch Design Studio may still be in its teething stages, but that hasn’t stopped the team from taking a juicy bite out of some very coveted assignments. Turning two this February, it pays that both co-founders Ipsit Patel and Rika Chaudhry, architect graduates from CEPT, Ahmedabad have cut their teeth with leading lights of the industry and even have international experience to their credit. Describing themselves as a multi-disciplinary firm with expertise in architecture, interiors and product design this young team applies their varied interests in music and origami to creating a vibrant and refreshing portfolio. “With each project we try to push the notional boundaries of design and function” add the team. As the new kid on the block, Patch Design Studio is trying harder. And it’s working.

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While the firm has several interior projects worthy of showcasing, the RND Diagnostic Centre in Marol, Mumbai makes it to this segment for unconventional design as well as the team’s skill in stretching the limits. Rika explains, “Healthcare centres are almost always approached with a sterile design sensibility. We tried to break away from this notion, while still tackling the challenges of catering to a strict maritime diagnostic centre.” The team confesses it took some coaxing to get the client to buy into the origami concept. When working on the plan, Patch Design Studio agreed to retain certain traditions like a white palette and PUC coated surfaces that would lend a brighter, spacious look to the area, but insisted on working a little twist into the design. Origami, one of Rika’s pet pastimes provided the inspiration for the centre’s interiors, helping endow the space with unique character. The main feature wall in the reception area folds to envelope a bench for patients while at another end the wall folds into a reception desk. The designers have cleverly extended the concept of origami folds to furniture and have achieved startling results with an edgy desk and stool. Their refusal to be pinned down by convention as well as their ability to visualise the fantastic in the dull and ordinary makes them worthy of a centrefold.

Text By Christabelle Athaide Photographs By Patch Design Studio & Kunal Bhatia Home Review June 2014


Last year, Patch Design Studio made an ambitious pitch to design and develop 16-acres for SOIL’s (School of Inspired Leadership) campus in Pune. One of the requisites of the brief was to develop a sustainable plan that would fit in perfectly with the surroundings and respect the natural elements. The team comprising Ipsit, Rika and Shruti Gaonkar visited the site before putting forth their visualisation of the space. As a leadership school it was imperative to maintain a mature aesthetic in layout but as a residential campus it was equally essential to create an environment that energised the mind and spirit. The team recommended use of compressed earth bricks, local stone and lightweight roofing system for the basic structure. Additionally harnessing solar and wind energy and a water recycling plan would help the campus integrate into the environment. Inspired by the group discussion model that is favoured by the school, the classrooms, library and breakout spaces are designed to facilitate peer and professional interaction. The final design makes the most of the contoured site and natural climatic conditions. It also sensitively approaches the issue of a symbiotic relationship with neighbouring communities to create shared resources and infrastructure.

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Necessity is the mother of invention and also the driving force behind the product design portfolio of Patch Design Studio. While designing the interiors for a client - OML - the designers drew a blank when looking for accessories to match the industrial decor theme. That moment was the genesis of their first product - a garage light designed by Ipsit, followed by a range of lighting fixtures and furniture. Adds Rika, “It’s all about the details. We get down to making the products ourselves so that they are completely in sync with the theme.� One of the advantages of stepping into new territory is an unharnessed imagination that knows no limitations or pre-conceived notions. As a result, the team was able to conjure up a quirky conference table with plumbing pipes and coasters for one client and for another - a chunky conference table that resembles a clothes-iron turned upside down. The origami lights made of parchment paper are easily the most charming of the lot and have a special frothy temporal beauty. The red origami stool on the other hand stands daintily on its toes and adds an element of perky insouciance. Perpetually engaged with exploring recycled or unconventional materials, the team exhibits a fine gift for resourcefulness and originality.

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Clay is a versatile medium, even better is its ability to enthral and enchant; the play of clay for some is so alluring that it becomes the crux of their creative self. In this edition of The Specialist we catch up with one such individual - meet Shalan Dere, the proprietress of the Potter’s Place. It is one of those days when you realise that working in an air-conditioned office is a much better option that being in the company of sultry weather. However, the draw of the person in question and her creations are enticing enough for me to act otherwise. I am in front of The Scottish School in Matunga trying to locate “Potter’s Place”. After going round in circles for a few minutes, an angelic soul guides me to the proper address - voila I have made it!

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As I greet Shalan she exclaims, “I was about to call you,� but sadly my phone was out of battery and that would not have been much help. As we get talking Shalan introduces me to her body of work - from the personal moments of a young couple, to a Happy Family and Rhythm, the dancing bottles with a turquoise glaze, her creations capture and recreate a plethora of emotions. Then there are more functional ones like the planters; but what catches my attention is a collection of plates and saucers which have been inspired by leaves in her garden simple yet amazing.

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Another aspect that strikes me is the glaze and the finish of the product that is absolutely extraordinary. I ask her how she manages it and quick comes a reply, “It’s an individual process and every potter has a trick up their sleeve to ensure that the glaze and finish of the end product is unique.” For Shalan to come to this stage it took almost 10 years, but then for someone who left aside a well to do career post her MBA this journey has not only been interesting but immensely fulfilling. “In the early days when I was initiated to this art, I practiced only twice a week on weekends and since the only kiln available for the firing process was in Karjat, it was a weekend trip there for me,” she says. Slowly Shalan realised that she would need her own set-up to carry on with her pursuit and that led to the birth of the Potter’s Place. The studio encompassed all the space she needed to make and display her creations - besides acting as an exhibition venue as well. Getting back to her creations some of them reflect the personal anecdotes of daily life, take for example the piece called “Awaiting” which shows people on a bench waiting. In a sense it probably reflects the thought that in life we are all waiting for ‘something’. Though most of Shalan’s creations exhibit a ‘multiplicity’ in terms of their inspiration, there are some which exhibit a ‘singularity’ like the sculpture inspired by the work of Henry Moor, a well-known English sculptor and artist (the glaze used makes it look like metal work). Different firing techniques are used in creating and glazing the products including Raku, a Japanese firing technique in which the results are visible within a span of two hours. Many interesting and diverse pottery decorating techniques like Slip Tailing are also put to good use.

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Shalan believes that pottery is a restorative art and many of the participants at her pottery workshops have taken up this art to escape the daily conundrum of life and be at peace with themselves. The art is quite popular among young students too who have a willingness to experiment with the medium. Shalan believes that pottery in India gets short changed unlike abroad where it is appreciated so much more. “People are like... matti ka hai… so the general perception is not much work is involved and it should come cheap, like the mass produced varieties; but the actual story is that even the smallest product of clay undergoes as much as 10 steps - right from preparation of the clay to glaze and overglaze firing.” As a potter Shalan has interacted with fellow potters to raise awareness and exhibit the product collectively which has been a runaway success. Her solo exhibition too was immensely successful in terms of the compliments and revenue it garnered. Two more exhibitions in the city are on the anvil of which one will be held at Kamalnayan Bajaj Hall and Art Gallery in the second week of October. Shalan believes that this is a good way to not only enhance the commercial prospect of potters as a community but also pottery as an art form. Even for a self-trained potter like her learning never stops and given the slightest opportunity, Shalan makes it a point to garner additional know-how and harness it in her creations. From bowls and platters to vases, murals and home accessories, Potter’s Place offers a varied number of ceramic artefacts and products that can provide an artistic touch to your abode. Customised products too are a ready possibility - for further queries a visit to the studio would be the best way to get things fired-up.

POTTER’S PLACE ‘Sumati’,Lt. Dilip Gupte Rd, Mahim, Mumbai 400 016 [behind Bombay Scottish School] Tel: +91 97730 95005

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Advertorial Home Review June 2014


THE MARKETPLACE Green Carpet’s Planters Green Carpet, a provider of gardening solutions, brings a spectacular range of high-end poly-propylene planters from Italy to augment the beauty of your garden. The collection can be used both indoors and outdoors. Lightweight yet sturdy, the planters come in numerous shades such as red, green, yellow, blue and purple. Green Carpet - The Garden Centre is a one-of-a-kind shop offering complete gardening solutions.

Its inception was in Bangalore in the year 2002. The concept was inspired by the unorganized and insignificant market for garden products where only plant nurseries existed without any real outlet for other gardening needs. Green Carpet’s constant endeavour is to decrease the carbon footprint in the environment by offering eco-friendly garden products and services to the masses.

Cera’s Green Range Certified By IAPMO Cera, one of India’s most innovative bathroom solutions providers, and a pioneer of the water-saving twin-flush in India more than 15 years ago, has been at the forefront of launching path-breaking products since its inception. The Campbell range of CERA (consisting of a one-piece WC, two-piece floor mounting close-coupled WC, two-piece wall-mounting close-coupled WC and a wall mounting WC) designed in-house by Cera’s R&D team has been awarded a Green Certification by IAPMO. IAPMO is the international body for the standardisation of plumbing products and codes. Cera’s pioneering work on watersaving products is certified by IAPMO after vigorous tests were conducted in its lab for the verification of the water-saving feature. The rating given for 3141 Campbell one-

Sternhagen Now In India Sternhagen, a German brand that stands for the pinnacle of luxury in design and engineering will soon be launched in India. The brand, owned by Acrysil GmbH, Germany (a wholly owned subsidiary of Acrysil Limited, India) has already earned accolades from the industry for its awe inspiring designs and amazing quality and finish during Acetech 2013 in New Delhi. The Sternhagen collection of washbasins will initially have four nature inspired exclusive designs namely Düne (inspired by sand dunes), Seerose (inspired by petals of water lily), Golden Cut (90° geometric cut design) and Kristall (inspired by natural crystal). The collection provides a subtle visual reminder of nature and each design connects people with emotions and memories associated with nature. Sternhagen wash basins are made from Sanitary Quartz (Sani-Q) discovered and perfected after years of intensive R&D.

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The Sani-Q wash basin is made out of patented, high-tech quartz and has an ultra smooth silky finish and a built-in hygiene armour both on its surface, as well as at the core. Sani-Q’s silk finish lends itself perfectly for easy upkeep and the most creative artistic sculpture. The Sternhagen range of washbasins will be manufactured by Acrysil at its state-ofthe-art manufacturing facility in Bhavnagar, Gujarat. The raw material (Sani-Q), the highly acclaimed designs and the moulds will all be sourced from Germany. The products would be priced in the range of Rs. 21,000 to Rs. 60,000 per unit.

piece, 2098 Campbell two-piece floor mounting and 2099 Campbell wall mounting sets is a three star rating for their watersaving feature. Cera’s sensor urinal 5005A has also been awarded a three star rating for its water-saving feature. Two wall hung WCs, 2011 Campbell and 2036 Carat have been awarded a single star rating for their watersaving feature. Cera, which embodies innovation and style in its products has inducted Bollywood youth and fashion icon Sonam Kapoor as its brand ambassador and has also unveiled a new television and print campaign.

THE MARKETPLACE Metrika’s Designer Kitchens! Every installation is an exquisite piece that has its own appeal. The immaculate, on-time and unmatched technical support has made Metrika’s custom solutions, a roaring success.

Kitchens are no more restricted to cooking alone. They are treated as luxurious spaces that reflect one’s fine taste in life. Metrika understands this aspect and ensures that right from designs to colours, platforms and cabinets every care is taken to make your kitchen a special room that inspires and awes anyone who walks into it.

Under the leadership of Mr.Vasant Vasudeo, Metrika has become the preferred brand of hundreds of clients till date. The zest for constant innovation to produce new designs and techniques, on-time installation, prompt after sales service and a wide range of modular kitchen units in various shapes, sizes and colours have garnered Metrika a win-win relationship with their customers.

Tata BlueScope Steel has now introduced their Thermatech technology with Colorbond steel, its flagship coated steel brand at the Roof India Exhibition in Chennai. Colorbond steel is one of the world’s most advanced pre-painted steel product for the building and construction industry. Thermatech technology in Colorbond steel helps lower surface temperature by reflecting more solar heat, thereby reducing the heat radiation travelling downwards into the building thus keeping both the roof and interior of the building cooler.

The experts at Metrika offer a solution that’s perfect for your customised requirements. A seamless and perfect interplay of colours, texture, lighting and design aesthetics further adds a sophisticated charm to the kitchen space.

Aquaguard Hot N’ Cold Water Purifier Eureka Forbes, the water purification major in India has recently launched a new series of premium water purifiers under the brand ‘Aquaguard World Series’ with Waterlogic, one of the largest water purifier companies in North America and Europe. The revolutionary Aquaguard Hot N’ Cold comes equipped with in-built temperature control which lets you choose between hot and cold water as per your preference. Its technologically advanced firewall purifies your drinking water and makes it 99.9999% bacteria free. Furthermore, the revolutionary firewall even acts as a barrier and prevents contamination from outside, giving you with pure, fresh water throughout the day. The Aquaguard Hot N‘ Cold works on UV technology of Grouvth which is a combination of pathbreaking technologies present individually or collective and working in tandem to ensure availability of safe drinking water. The special design of UV lamp allows for higher UV exposure which reduces bacteria, virus and parasites in water.

Tata BlueScope Steel Launches Thermatech Technology In Colorbond Steel

Thermatech technology in Colorbond steel, reduces the temperature inside the building by upto 60 C in hot weather, depending upon the level of insulation already installed, thus reducing the need for air conditioning. The company has further expanded its colour range by adding five new colours with high SRI values other than Surfmist (SRI-81); these include Mosaic Blue (SRI-82), Aloe Green (SRI-82), Fantasy Yellow (SRI-82), Neutral Beige (SRI-80) and Ivory Grey (SRI-80). The purifier comes with individual dispense buttons allowing one to select the temperature of water. It has point of dispense purification which keeps the dispense nozzle free from external contamination and ensures that the water gets purified as it falls. It is also equipped with a special feature which prevents airborne contamination by human contact from entering into the system at the dispensing area.

Mr. Riten Choudhry, Managing Director, Tata BlueScope Steel Limited says “Colorbond steel with Thermatech solar reflectance technology sets a new benchmark in the industry and provides property owners, architects, builders and developers with a better building material option to keep pace with the changing need of the hour. The launch of this technology is a step towards creating a future that is not just comfortable for people but respects the environment too.” Home Review June 2014


THE MARKETPLACE Somany Launches Glosstra Wall Tiles

Tiles have become a symbolic caricature of ambience in living spaces. Designed on the basis of functionality and aesthetic appeal they are meant to add colour and life to the spaces they adorn. Wall tiles can pave the way to a subtle classy backdrop. They act like artefacts which make a definitive style statement. Somany recently launched Glosstra, one of India’s glossiest tiles for walls. Somany’s Glosstra tiles come in a wide range of bright and vibrant colours, accentuated by an extraordinary glossy surface. Light plays a definitive role in highlighting an interior space

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- and Glosstra with its high gloss finish reflects light and propagates a sense of being a wide and open area where used. The use of high definition digital printing captures detailing on every molecule of the tile surface, and creates a virtually seamless digital canvas. Glosstra is created using an “Ultra Gloss” technology and a special tonality of pink colour in magenta hues is extensively used for creating a variety of designs. Options in Glosstra include fabric texture, undulated surfaces and stone finishes, and also the use of motifs and florals patterns. Special concepts have been created in

Glosstra for children’s rooms and kitchen walls. Glosstra is also available in matt finishes, giving the option of a uniquely designed surface. Engineered to perfection with revolutionary digital printing technology, Glosstra is available in a 30cm x 60cm size to minimise joints. Glosstra wall tiles exude a sense of exuberance while providing a protective surface; it not only creates walls that look good but also enhance the style quotient of any living space.


Home Review June 2014



164 Home Review June 2014

Home Review June 2014  

Rooshad Shroff has been extremely quick to bag a series of envious commissions soon after his return from working with Zaha Hadid Architects...

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