by Dhwani ShanghviNov 14, 2023
The Lakeshore residence is sprawled across a narrow site on the edge of the backwater of the Gautami Godavari dam in Nashik in Maharashtra, India. Designed by architecture and interior design firm Atelier Landschaft, the house faces the lake and the Sahyadri range to its north, while its back faces the street via which it is accessed. The 220 sqm holiday home is a single-storey residential design composed of three interconnected volumes that are organised almost linearly - as an abstraction of the water’s edge it affronts. Culminating at the lake, the site slopes gently towards the north, while the house itself sits snugly on the plateau above.
The central volume, containing a living area, a pantry and a bedroom (called the Bridge Room) is oriented north-south and affords expansive openings on the north - to all the spaces it accommodates. On each side of this central volume, a bridge leads to the bedrooms (the Sanctuary Room and the Secret Garden Room), which constitute the private volumes to the west and east, respectively. The two side volumes face away from the central volume, having been turned around their respective axis, to face the terrain beyond. A viewing deck is provided on each lake-facing façade of the house, which, in case of the central core, extends to accommodate an infinity pool.
The two bridges that connect the core to the side wings are a spatial contradiction of each other. The corridor leading to the Sanctuary Room on the west is a glass box on the exterior with an MS framework. On the other hand, the corridor on the east runs along the Bridge Room on the interior, with two openings punctured along its length.
Internally, the house is composed of walls clad in locally sourced black basalt, exhibiting a square grid within the cubical volume. Additionally, a composition of MS framed structures, concrete slabs, beams and pilotis; natural stone textured floors, and glass curtain walls along the north façade, results in voluminous, albeit constrained spaces that enable the landscape and the terrain to dominate the site.
The latter, in addition to affording unobstructed views, also brings in soft north light not just through the window openings, but also through clerestories that support a south sloping roof.
Beyond the built form, a landscaped mound surrounds the site on three sides, while an access road abuts the fourth. On the far east, the Secret Garden room overlooks a forest garden, beyond the manicured lawn scattered with garden sculptures. On the west, the deck of the Sanctuary Room has a hammock incorporated within its floor, which engages with a hardscaped children’s play area. A low gabion wall encloses the site before it gradually meets the lake below.
The restrained geometry, linear spatial configuration, axially extruded decks, sharp, clean lines and gently sloping roofs create a series of subdued masses that have the appearance of being assembled out of LEGO blocks in plan. The extrusions of the roof eaves, decks, and pools; and the black slate roof combine to create a seemingly modular system that further adds to this illusion.
The interior, however, is an antithesis to this muted volume of clean lines. The furniture layout seems to align itself incoherently such that in instances, the headboard of the bed extrudes beyond the wall line, overlapping the window beyond. Additionally, a material palette that incorporates solid reclaimed teak wood and retro fabrics results in an aesthetic that is in stark contrast to the volume that accommodates it.