A five-hour drive from Chennai got us to the green lush area of Asikadu. I was excited to go on a site visit from office to this residence there, which was nearing completion. Having only seen the residence in photographs and renders in the office, I have to say that the photographs do not do justice to the real thing. One glance at the building, I got a glimpse into the depths of the effort put into make it all possible.
A cobble stoned driveway led us to the main cottage. The complex housed the main cottage, four smaller cottages and service block. Landscaping and lighting has been planned for the whole complex; bamboo plants were already part of the complex.
The scale of the space and the elements were perfect, making it comfortable and at the same time maintaining its grandeur. I also got a chance to have a look at the remarkable craftsmanship and the ingenious detailing done in the building. Building materials have been used in their almost true form.
Interior has been detailed tastefully to go with the décor. Traditional sloping roof with Mangalore tiles has been done throughout. Beautifully crafted timber columns decorated the verandahs and the courtyard. Large timber windows have been treated with a beautiful athangudi tile border and protected by a traditional tiled sunshade. Spacious rooms with a distinctive palette of colours have been done.
Traditional light fixtures, ceiling fixtures and antique furniture added to the décor. The furniture were put together on site and located accordingly in the house. Niches decorated some of the walls.
It is a pity that we do not see much of such authentic beautiful buildings nowadays. I was truly inspired when I went for this site visit, knowing that this building is going to stand majestically amidst the landscaped surroundings once it is completed.
- R. Manjil masha.