The site is located at the foothills of fort Ajinkyatara. We wanted to frame the fort via fenestrations of the house. Also, the house is on the fringe of the forest and has very scenic outdoors. Integration of indoor with outdoor spaces was crucial. We wanted to create spaces that would allow the family to feel as if they are living outdoors, with the comforts and security of being at home. A house that will belong in the mountains, yet will provide the family of four a contemporary living.

Project Name: Sohala House
Studio Name: DnC
Size: 2000 Sq.ft
Location: Satara, India
Completion: January, 2020

©DnC

We didn’t want to create a matchbox house. Volume defines the spaces. The ground floor has the living areas (living, kitchen, dining) and the upper floor has private areas (bedrooms, family area). Height between the floors varies between 3.6m and 4.2m. Contours of the site have been used to create levels on ground floor to differentiate between the living and kitchen, dining areas and is an open floor plan.

A strip garden runs around the house which is covered by a pergola. The pergola is designed such that no security grills are needed for the openings on ground floor. The French doors and windows open out into the strip garden.

©DnC

Staircase between the floors juts out of the built and is fabricated. The lightness of the staircase is enhanced by perforate sheet risers. Staircase connects into the family area on the upper floor. It is clad by Corten steel on the outer side. The weathered steel adds a rustic tinge to the contemporary exteriors.

Kid’s bedroom on the upper floor is cantilevered such that it covers the parking area on the ground floor. Cross ventilation is enhanced by East and West side openings. The walk-in wardrobe has a kid’s den/study loft above it. The master bedroom opens out into the terrace of the upper floor.

©DnC

Red sashed windows have been fabricated for the house. Each window is divided into 4 openable windows to control the amount of wind entering the house, but also creating a 100% openable window. Except in the kitchen, all windows are seating windows, creating nooks for reading or just staring out into the forest.

The house has concrete flooring, Envoplast (to avoid use of sand) plaster on walls, no punning, minimal false ceiling and exposed RCC slabs. A dropped mesh of Mild steel is fabricated in the living, dining and family areas. Indoor climbers are greening the mesh, to create a green canopy in these areas. Laterite stone walls have been constructed as feature walls on the ground floor.

©DnC

The volumes, big fenestrations and box windows allow the house to be well-ventilated and well-lit, thus minimizing the need of artificial light/ventilation. Rain-water from the roof has been harvested to recharge the underground aquifers. All bathrooms have skylights and ample natural ventilation. Turbo vent is used to accentuate ventilation of utility duct. ‘Sohala’ is a contemporary, sustainable home that allows the family to celebrate even the mundane!


Ar. Amruta Deshpande

Having completed her Bachelor of Architecture degree from Pune University (India), Amruta pursued her Masters in Construction management from Texas A&M University (U.S.A). She worked with Arup as a construction analyst in San Francisco, before repatriating and working with RJB CPL in Mumbai.  She founded DnC in 2014 in Pune, to realize her vision of seamless integration between Design and Construction. Having completed projects from retail, industrial, residential and hospitality sectors, Amruta believes in interdisciplinary collaborations and values efficiency and innovation for design and execution. Team DnC partners with stakeholders and consultants on projects, to deliver the imagined!

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