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656a Studio Designs User-Centric Greenfields Villa and Suites: A European-Inspired Resort in Bhopal

Architect Purva Saksena and Architect Anuj Sharma, co-founders, 656a Studio, Bhopal, designed Greenfields Villa and Suites, a charming resort, on the lines of a European country house.

We believe the design should be ‘user centric’. For the Greenfields Villa and Suites project, that is a resort located on Kolar Road, Bhopal, we needed to design a complex that would keep in mind the requirements of the resort guests as well as the resort owner and staff. We interacted with them to understand their requirements, studied the site, and then worked on the design keeping their needs in mind,” says architect Purva Saksena. She and architect Anuj Sharma are co-founders of 656a Studio, an architectural firm, based in Bawadiya Kalan, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh.

The almost 30,000 square feet site, is surrounded on three sides by the bustling Kolar neighbourhood and is blessed with a view of farmlands and low hills in the distance on one side. The brief was to develop a boutique hotel (at the site) that would be luxurious, serene and secluded even while being in the heart of activity; have a sense of expansiveness within the complex; and enjoy views of the outdoors.

Keeping these requirements in mind, the architects designed a complex in parts together covering 15,000 square feet spanning a stand-alone villa (with spacious living areas and three bedrooms) and a separate ground plus one level building with well-appointed suites; both these buildings have a view of the pool and garden that is between them with a cabana and open bar area for poolside parties and weddings; reception and office near the entrance make up the `front of the house’. Additionally their is another lawn with it’s out covered patio for parties with an unencumbered view of the scenery. The `back of the house’ areas like a fully functioning commercial kitchen and offices etc. are on the other end of this lawn.

A European Country House

Inspired by the views of rolling green fields, the architects designed the villa on the lines of a European country house and reflected the same ethos in the building housing the suites. Designed with a sloping tiled roof, the low height villa has a voluminous double-height living area complete with rafters and chair rail moulding; an informal living area designed as a glass house akin the conservatories with plants in European country homes; two bedrooms with attached bathrooms on the lower level, and one bedroom with an attached bathroom on the mezzanine level accessed from the living room.

Gently adding to the architecture of the villa are details in the form of green louvered shutters, French windows, longer planters in window sills, cornices along the edge of the sloping roof, broad stone skirting, a porthole window set above the entrance door and curved (rather than straight line) steps leading to the villa.

Reflecting the design of the villa yet stating its own presence is the building housing the suites. Of neat lines and symmetry, it has three suites on the ground floor fronted by a long verandah with patterned tile flooring and grand glass chandeliers along its length, a reception at the front near the entrance, and four suites on the upper level also with a long verandah with the same patterned tile flooring and chandeliers. All the suites have spacious attached designer bathrooms.

The upper level of the building is accessed by a neat external staircase on either ends giving it a neat symmetry. Patterned screens stand below the staircase and offer space for amenities such as the water pump. While the lower level has segmental arches edging the verandah that create a gentle rhythm in its curved lines, the upper level has the sloping roof meeting slender columns thus ensuring a subtle balance between the two floors.

The interiors of the villa and suites have been done up with glass chandeliers mirroring the grand glass chandeliers of Mediterranean interiors as well as wall scones, furniture including four-poster beds, wall plates and paintings all inspired by the same. The exterior and interiors were painted yellow to bring cheer and recall the character of Mediterranean countryside manors. All these elements were carefully selected to complement the design.

Verdure and Views :Adding to the resort ambience of the complex is the landscaping from the flowering plants in the planters set in the window sills of the villa, to the splash of colourful mass of bracts of bougainvillea, the green garden between the villa and suites, and the manicured lawn for events set in the space adjoining the villa and suites to ensure privacy for resident guests. Pathways and areas around the villas and suites were paved to offer easy access through the year. And a row of Ficus benjamina trees planted along the boundary facing the road to reduce sound and offer privacy to guests.

The low level villa and suites building with garden and pool between them ensures that guests are privy to views of the expanse of the sky above and of the fields and low hills beyond the road as well as ample natural light by day and ventilation through the day and night. Elements of ancient Roman and Greek architecture, by the different styles of classical architecture of different European countries, by the impressive columns and arches, cornices and mouldings of monuments there, inspired the design of the main façade of the suites structure. It thus has neat faux windows and small balconies, and pairs of short columns set into the facade to create a sense of grandeur, while sealing the interiors from the bustle of the road.

All the buildings are painted yellow and this shared colour binds the different spaces of the project together. All the rooms –of the villa and suites-enjoy soothing views of the pool and garden area or the farms and hills. In the evenings, the façade comes alive with uplighters as does the complex with lights in ancient Victorian scones like wall and street lamps as well as small lights along the garden and lawns casting a soothing ambience all around. It is a picture of peace, of an ideal retreat by day and night.

Fact File

Name of the project: Greenfields Villa and Suites

Project’s location: Bairagarh Chichli, Kolar Road-Bhopal (M.P)

Name principal Architect- Ar. Anuj Sharma & Ar. Purva Saksena

Name of the architectural or Design firm – 656a Studio

Design Team, location: Bawadiyakalan, Bhopal (M.P)

Built-up area: 15,000.00 SQFT

Cost of project: 2.00 Cr.

Year of completion: 2023

INSTA: 656a Studio

FACEBOOK PAGE: 656a Studio

Photography firm: Imagix Architecture Photography

Photographer : Pawan Vijayvargiya

Ar. Anuj Sharma & Ar. Purva Saksena


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