Deep within the untamed wilderness of Karjat, a town on the outskirts of Mumbai, SHROFFLEóN architects has designed a house that stands as a symbol of refuge on a tranquil 3.5 acres of farmland. Moulded as a monolithic mass of architecture, the building docks itself in liquid stone as an escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. The built form mimics the natural rusticity of its surroundings by standing bare against the sun to weather gracefully, as it was crafted to do so. The property called Mirador acts as a second home to an urban family in search of a change in pace, far from any vestige of civilisation.
In response to the pre-existing thriving farmland, the anatomy of the structure, comprising two bedrooms, a living area and kitchen and bathrooms, choreographs itself respectfully to blend in rather than to stand out.
According to the architects, the aim of the structure was “to frame and capture as much of the sceneries as possible, from where they are most plentifully served”.
If it is not the hills in the distance, it is the cascading waterfall nearby; or sometimes the fruits of mango tree plantations, paddy fields and vegetable patches add to the farmhouse narrative.
An exterior concrete shell frames these vantages, comprising structural slabs and columns. Beyond this shell lies the heart of the edifice that is safeguarded.
A peripheral veil of glass facades and columns are the only elements that come between the residents and nature. A portico sandwiched in between glass and column creates an idyllic cue for the residents to engage with nature. It is further strengthened by the addition of an infinity pool along the portico edge.
The slow pace of farm life dawns through the glass facades as the sun’s rays generously pierce into the central living-dining core at rise and set, giving it a dynamic energy of life. Instilling a town square-like vibe, this communal space serves as a perfect spot for social gatherings.
Away from the communal area, privacy awaits at the East and West wings flanking either side. Each wing accommodates a bed and bath suite and feels part of the idyllic landscape as its glass walls dissolve into the sceneries.
Minimalism is the protagonist of the building’s design narration. An inkling of material exploration only begins to manifest at the habitable spaces, where textures primarily dress horizontal plains in concrete and stone.
A larger bulk of vertical surfaces comprises glass screens that choose to render themselves with the all-encompassing sceneries that become part of the interior decor. A hint of opaque verticals breaks the transparency of the built, in an accented tone of natural stone walls.
The floating edifice resting by the backdrop of the Ulhas River nearby provides the near perfect counter to the busy pace of city life.
Project Name: MIRADOR
Location: Karjat, Maharashtra, India
Lead Architects : Kayzad Rumy Shroff and Maria Isabel Jimenez Leon
Architecture firm: SHROFFLEóN
Photographer : Suleiman Merchant
Year of completion: October 2020
Type: Residential architecture, residential interiors, landscape