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Carving a niche

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Constraining walls are brought down to create spaces that are chic and contemporary, but with a dash of the classical


Creating spaces that not only break boundaries to bring together generations but also different design sensibilities is a feat. This was the task put forth to Mumbai-based architect, Behzad Noshir Kharas of thinkBNK Architects.

"The homeowners wanted a modern home that would have a touch of opulence. But their daughters wanted a space that was chic, even tipping towards over-the-top," says Kharas.

Kharas addressed this disparity in expectations by amalgamating a classical motif into the various spaces of the home, save for the children's areas. The motif against contemporary design elements helps bring about a balanced synergy in the house.

While the design needs were contrasting, there was a clear want for open areas and storage spaces. Taking that into account, this 1200 sq ft Mumbai apartment was redesigned by breaking down constraining walls from the original floor plan to create a living and dining space, two bedrooms with attached bathrooms, and an additional multi-purpose room.

"It was initially a three-room floor plan but there was a request to open up the spaces. So we broke down one room and created a smaller, half-room of sorts which is the theatre room. This helped us gain more floor area for the living room and the bedrooms," explains Kharas.


The entrance opens into a large living area. Here, an otherwise contemporary sofa gets a shot of the classical with detailed carving on its arms. This space flows into an adjoining dining area, and in both these areas, the architect has created camouflaged niches for storage.

"A sliding door behind the dining space divides the living room and the bedrooms," says Kharas.

The master bedroom follows suit with warm design tones same as the the living room and is a blend of contemporary and classical design elements.

The daughters' bedroom is a contrast to the rest of the home. White and pale pink wardrobes take up most of the space and are engraved with floral patterns.

The study tables are tucked in a corner, a side table doubles up as a dressing stool and the large double bed has a headboard of leather panels in shades and patterns of pink, mauve and white. Keeping with the quintessentially feminine theme, the bathroom takes on a pink theme too.

The last remaining area of the house, the theatre room, emerged as a result of the change in the original floor plan. Furnished with a simple sofa-cum-bed and equipped with a projector, this multi-purpose space can double up as a guest room, an office or an entertainment area.

"It receives maximum amount of light, especially when compared to the dining and living areas. For that reason, glass has been used in this room to make it visually lighter. So once the sliding doors behind the dining are ajar, the light pours into here," explains Kharas.

First published date: 16 October 2012

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Credit List

Owner's name Shailesh Sanghvi
Architect Behzad Noshir Kharas; thinkBNK Architects
Associations Indian Green Building Council (IGBC), Indian Institute of Interior Designers (IIID), Indian Institute of Architects (IIA), Council Of Architecture (COA)
Window Domal
Furniture Custom-made, Chandan Furnishers
Tiling Only Italian
Flooring Classic Marble
Paints Asian Paints
Lighting Supreme Lights
Heating Stiebel Eltron
Kitchen Niramal Kitchen
Benchtops Classic Marble
Splashback Golden Marble
Oven Kaff
Stove Kaff
Ventilation Cata
Microwave LG
Refrigerator Hitachi
Basin Gessi, Fantini
Taps Gessi, Fantini, The Bath Shop, Sourze Bed
Linen Dreams
Mirrors Saint Gobain
Others Handrails, Clocks, Artworks