A Clever App

It’s not often you see a peacock sauntering into your home, totally at ease with the surroundings. A creature of habit, perhaps, for this home has stood on this ground in Ahmedabad for many years. Architecture firm UA Lab were engaged to renovate the home to make more room internally for the family and give the entire interiors a face lift.

As cliched as it may sound, when space is tight, you think out of the box and that’s exactly what the architects did. Literally and figuratively! They renovated the existing structure without compromising the open spaces to give it a new look with bold colours, shiny floors, exposed concrete walls for that element of rusticity, cozy corners, verandas to hang out, and clever creation of pockets of space.

About the project:

Location: Ahmedabad, Gujarat
Site Area : 322 sq m
Built Area : 298 sq m (Ground + 1)
Built in : 2017
Type: House with three bedrooms spread over two levels
Designed by:  – Vipuja Parmar, Krushnakant Parmar of UA Lab (Urban Architectural Collaborative)
Photograph courtesy:  Dhrupad Shukla

The house is spread over two floors with the ground floor comprising parking, a front garden, living + dining, kitchen, master bedroom, powder room and utility.  The fist floor houses a family cum entertainment room, home office, two bedrooms and a balcony that opens up the front garden.

“The existing load bearing structure was restrictive in terms of opening up the space “, say the architects.  Read on to see how they overcame this challenge.

The old structure was restrained in terms of making room for more. New envelopes were created around the existing structure to release enclosed spaces. The exposed RCC of a new envelope can be seen above that adds to the beauty of the old structure, while a peacock casually saunters in.


The living room the ground floor opens up to the garden.
Exposed concrete wall in the living room gives a charming touch.
The family room on the first floor


This bay window in the master bedroom is part of one extension that makes the room spacious than it was earlier.
The master bedroom on the first floor with a window seat.
The bedroom on the first floor with a window seat.
The minimalist bedroom opens up to the balcony on the first floor.
The balcony on the first floor (seen to the left) that all the bedrooms open up to is designed as a veranda. This becomes the primary gathering space for the family in the evenings.

The architect says,

The residential project had very similar demands as any house extension project. The clients wanted larger spaces to meet the present and future requirements. Our first few experiences on the site was with the peacocks and peahens around us under the greens.

All our site experiences guided us to develop a design without compromising on the existing open spaces available to the users. We focused on exploring the quality of spaciousness within the existing built up than creating larger spaces.”

The new home was designed with the idea of maximizing views to  the garden, letting natural light in through windows and skylights, and diminish the internal-external barrier.

Since the old load bearing structure gave little scope in terms of expansion, the architects brilliantly made more room by creating envelopes around the main structure using the existing framework of walls, columns and frames.  Once this external support was created, they bought down the enclosed inner walls to be released within these envelopes.

All the new extensions, done in RCC structure, retain the exposed look.  In addition, the new walls and frames of beams – columns designed as envelopes, are kept open from the top which creates a beautiful play of light and shadows throughout the day.

The living room in its new avatar opens up entirely to the garden side. The dining area opens into veranda on the east side.  On the first floor level, the rooms open up into the huge balcony space. The balcony shared between the
rooms is designed as a veranda space that opens up in the garden on one side.

The master bedroom sports a bay window becoming a focal point.  The skylight in the bathroom area gives it that spa-like outdoorsy feeling.

On a closing note, no renovation is easy as it is limiting in terms of space. But, this was  a clever renovation that increased the spatial footprint while celebrating the existing green spaces.

Product Sources:

Natural Veneer, Syska LED, Daikin AC, Bison Panel, Cera Sanitary ware, Plumber fittings
Floors : Natural stone, Vitrified tiles
Walls : Plastic paint on cement plaster, Exposed RCC Finish
Door / Window : Teak wood panel door, ‘Shailaja” Aluminium window
Furniture : Re-claimed Valsadi Sag wood, Natural Veneer on Ply, Wired Glass, Clear Glass, Soft Board
Finishes of Furniture : Tel-Paani Polish, Melamine Polish
Art Work – Krushnakant parmar
Furniture – BOXLAB & UA Lab
Structure – Nipul Patel
Civil – Muljibhai Patel
Carpentry work – Damodar Mistry


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