Homes where Contemporary Design Meets Traditional Architecture: Part-1
Traditional houses, modern influences
Just a few decades back, Indian homes were built keeping the norms of traditional architecture in mind. However, homes today in the city – either apartments or individual houses, have gone through a fundamental change in their architecture compared to our older generation.
There are many features about the Tamil household that give out a certain charm. Features such as intricate details in design make the traditional form of homes a treasure to cherish for centuries. Homes during our ancestor’s generation were primarily built using materials such as mud that was either raw with the binding material being husk and mud bricks dried in the sun for a long period to become durable and to withstand any climate. The materials that were used, were easily available and accessible – this made not only construction easier but also suited the preferences of the house owners.
The inclusion of an enclosure or a court inside every house was also a common sight, with an addition of verandah’s that were slightly above ground level and a common seating arena for all the members of the family, which was situated right in front of the house. It’s commonly called as Thinnai in the Tamil language. One other common feature that is present in every traditional Tamil household during those days was the abundant use of lime plasters to cool the inside of the house as it reflected sunlight and it also kept insects away. While traditional houses and their little features were one of the glories of that era, one cannot help but wonder about the next generation of houses that will be built. Will we be living in completely transformed ‘smart’ houses; will they even retain elements of our culture? The fear of losing our traditional roots and practices to modern marvels is always at the back of our minds.
Keeping this in mind, SPR Highliving has come up with an innovative yet thoughtful way of creating homes that gives one the best of both worlds. How you ask? By retaining the old world charm and building homes that are perfect interweaves between traditional architecture and modern brilliance. Introducing the ‘sky-light’ window which is built at the center of the house, giving one the impression of light entering through the roof, just like homes we spent our childhood and grew up in. Another feature is the use of ‘vaastu shastra’ in the planning and construction of the houses, while a space for ‘thinnai’ has also been created to recreate the essence of socializing like old times.
What better way than to preserve our tradition and culture than inculcating our age-old way of building into the smart houses of the 21st century?