When they started thinking about constructing a house, all that Ren Abraham and Tigi Philip wanted was a tranquil, green oasis where they could relax at the end of a busy day. For this couple who run their own business, life moves in the fast-track. Their home, they knew had to be the place for them to unwind.
The house is built on a 7 cent plot in Vellayambalam, a busy part of the town, which is close to the Police Headquarters. Ren and Tigi had a clear idea of what they wanted their house to be. They wanted to keep the noises out and give prominence for spacing. They also wanted a garden. And 'Rohitham' was born. It has been two years now, and the couple is proud of their home.
The interiors were done with extra care and the decor, minimalistic. Like they say, there is sophistication in simplicity. Maximum utilisation of the available space was done by making the walls higher than usual. Privacy was an issue since the house was located right at the centre of the city, surrounded by high rises and apartments. A garden outside the house was not feasible because the couple felt it would invade their privacy. They then decided to have the garden inside the house. The garden and the adjacent seating area forms an integral part of Rohitham's design.
When you invite nature into your home, greenery and a gentle breeze come with it. The living and dining space in the house is partitioned with the help of this 'indoor garden space'. A pond, pebble court, plants and the garden decor is a part of this green space. A small wooden bridge over the pond lets you pass from the living area to the dining area. Using a double height ceiling with glass instead of walls, the design ensures that there is ample air circulation and light here.
The living, dining, family living and all other common areas spacious. There is a patio that stretches on both sides of the dining space. There is a fairly large balcony adjacent to the family living room on the top floor. The kitchen is comparatively small in size. A small kitchen, says Tigi, is always easier to clean and maintain.
The high roof of the house has many attractive features. There is no concrete here. The roof is divided into four different panels constructed using wood in metal frames, thermocol sheets, bison panelling and shingles. When you see the roof from below, you just see the wood panels. The thermocol sheets help in heat reduction and the shingles are attached to the bison panel.
The major factor behind the four-panel roofing style is heat insulation. The only detriment so far has been the leaks during the rains from certain parts in between the shingles. Ren feels that using shingles is not very wise taking into consideration Kerala's climate. Shingles are commonly used over concrete roofing and that is why such problems go unnoticed.
Tigi owns a Lifestyle store called 'Sarwaa' in Sasthamangalam.
Area: 3020 sq. ft.Owners: Ren & Tigi'Rohitham', Vellayambalam, Thiruvananthapuram
A patio with a relaxed setting on both sides of the dining room.A large balcony adjacent to the family living area on the top floor.Floors and cladding have been done with eco-friendly materials.A transparent sheet on one part of the roof lets ample light into the house.There are four bedrooms in the house, with separate balconies.Rustic finish to the wall over the wash basin.