More than 25 years ago, inspired by the relaxed aesthetic of houses in Mykonos, Greece, and the simple stone structures of village homes in Udaipur. 'My Mykonos' was built three hours outside Bombay, a short walk away from the beach. It was created to be a serene home in a calming blue and white colour scheme and a Mediterranean styled aesthetic. The house is built on different levels, echoing the paddy fields that were originally there and constructed only one room deep. All the rooms and spaces have a feeling of the outdoors moving in. The bathrooms are all open to the sky, the floors are in Shahabad stone, both inside and outside. The ceilings have wooden rafters and the water is drawn from a natural well. The home has been an inspiration to many artists, photographers, writers, designers and architects. Its aesthetic and design informed the look and feel of the well known Olive restaurants as well as many other homes.
Architect | Nozer Wadia
A well-located apartment on the 25th floor, with endless views of the city and its coastline, was designed in a minimalist style to make the most of the space and the spectacular views. Choosing bold and dramatic colours, sourcing uniquely curated items from Mumbai, Bali and Paris and customizing pieces of furniture add to the sense of scale. These included a beautiful travertine table made from a single piece of stone from an art dealer in Paris, a seat for the living room made from a single piece of wood from a giant buttress tree in Bali, and a dining table, fashioned from a single piece of glass, that is embedded into the wall. The furniture is sourced from Italy, crockery, cutlery and objetsd'art from from Paris and Mumbai. Old circus mirrors with eel skin frames and a washbasin as a single ceramic stand are amongst the many interesting artifacts that add charm.
Architect | Nozer Wadia
Inspired by a trip to Mykonos and "My Mykonos", a home in Alibaug, a seaside property across from the bay of Mumbai was imagined, using an old existing structure. A combination of well-appointed furniture from antique dealers and craftsmen, bespoke sofas and beds were sourced between Mumbai and the South of France. Rustic ropes were hung casually from the ceiling to form a chandelier, carefully selected artifacts, linen and art create a signature mediterranean ambience.
Architect | Shilpa Patankar
In a home where art is an everyday conversation, fuelling the imagination and passion was the key. Simple and whimsical furniture and linen, carefully handcrafted by connoisseurs of their individual crafts, are sourced from all over India. These include bespoke shelving for the objets d'art to fit within an alcove that offered magnificent views of the southern end of Mumbai. Rugs and sofas are kept low with window seating all along the panoramic windows. Special soft ceiling lights in linen from French craftsmen and artists in Pondicherry light up the entrance. Large canvases, sculptures and a cupboard of memories in a large and casual living space give the family a unique palette to express themselves.
Architect | Shilpa Patankar INSTALLATION ARTIST | Krishna Kedar
For the Ceat head office, tyre tracks run across the entire expanse of the lobby wall, like a winding road in perspective, digitally created out of white Corian. In addition informal breakout seating inside, as well as outdoor seating for the terraced gardens are created in hues that complement the brand colours. Bespoke pendant lamps visualised as tyres hanging from the ceiling have been screen printed on fabric and created in Pondicherry for the meeting rooms.
Architect | Ratan Batliboi
The brief for the top tier of RPG House, the HR and corporate office of the RPG Group, was to make it fun, young and vibrant. I converted the 2 pillars that run through the building into 2 trees with simple graphic branches in a light oak wood. The lobby became a nest like structure of the same wooden strips, curving to form a continuous flow from wall to ceiling. Each of the 13 cabins was planned individually with different colours, furniture, lamps, shelving and wallpaper interspersed with simple sourced objects to complement their incredible collection of art. Only the work desks are kept uniform. Everything else is quirky: from the carpets to the wallpaper, the various different styles of furniture, and, of course,the breakout areas.
Architect | Ratan Batliboi
MAHINDRA CORPORATE HQ
Architect Nozer Wadia approached me to help restore and curate the space for a corporate headquarters and residential space in a heritage building in South Mumbai. The sloping tiled roofs were partially replaced with glass, creating a conservatory living room with an abundance of plants and flowers and allowing the surrounding heritage buildings to be visible. I used small machine parts, big exhaust pipes, as well as front grills sourced from the corporate’s factory to create dramatic bespoke black and white wallpaper in the lobbies. A chandelier for the boardroom has been crafted out of the front grill of the first Willy jeep. For sound insulation, a tapestry was commissioned, designed by the students and woven by the textile department of the National Institute of Design. A selection of antique furniture and small vintage objects complete the refined ambience.
Architect | Nozer Wadia INSTALLATION ARTIST | Shahrukh Irani
RPG DINING ROOM
A selection of uniform sized self-portraits combined with small works from big masters was curated and displayed so that each told its own story on the executive dining room walls. The walls themselves were completed in a charcoal grey and the floor in oak wood. Parts of the exterior stone passage leading in were finished in the same deep grey. The room is encased on 3 sides in clear glass, surrounded by a patio tiled with a deep grey Kota stone. By keeping the same colour palette, the entire space is seen as one continuous space sealed in glass, like a jewel box of glowing art. Outside planters and a contained tropical landscape add drama to the surroundings.
Astra 21 is a Management Consultancy Office in the heart of Mumbai's expanding business hub. Opening up the ceiling, I increased the vertical space and used tall grey sliding doors as partial screens. Bursts of colour in the red carpet, abstract patterned chairs and a pinstriped wallpaper in the glass cabins create drama against the neutral colour palette. The storage below the windows has been converted into a platform with an 'outdoor' space indoors. It is covered with faux grass and lush live plants to appear like a raised garden. Natural wooden benches, a hammock chair and the sunlight make the 'garden' a place to unwind within the air-conditioned office, against the backdrop of highways and the tall skyscrapers of Lower Parel in Mumbai.
Architect | Shilpa Patankar
The Four Seasons rooftop Aer Bar offers panoramic views of Mumbai's bustling skyline from the 35th floor of the Four Seasons Hotel. The Aer Bar is an al fresco space with an appeal for the sophisticated, well-travelled guest. Inspired by the stunning views, I imagined a futuristic spaceship overlooking the city. It has an oval bar made of white Corian clad over a wooden frame. Selected furniture by Tokujin Yoshioko and Ross Lovegrove from Driade and Serralunga echoes the futuristic yet organic shapes of the Aer Bar. The unconventional use of polyethylene for the main seating creates a youthful, contemporary space yet retains the elegance and charm of a Four Seasons property.
Architect | Annalisa Belletati Stylist | Ritu Nanda
A premium gelateria in a city overflowing with ice cream parlours needed to stand out by name as well as in its branding, packaging and all collateral material. For the retail space of the brand, the directive was to display the whole gelato making experience to emphasize the natural and fresh gelato story as it was in Italy. It contains a glass section where the owner can be viewed everyday churning out the delicious gelatos made from the freshest fruit and the best ingredients sourced from around the world. The parlour itself is designed as an informal yet contemporary café, complementing the beautiful imported Carpigiani display units.
Architect | Ariane Ginwalla
THE SEAGULL CAFÉ
The Breach Candy Hospital café is located within the main hospital building in a courtyard. It had a small, partially covered section with potted plants and was surrounded by closed windows of offices, clinical labs and doctor’s rooms. Hospital authorities wanted to clear the entire space of plants and convert it into a hygienic and safe environment. As the property is practically a hundred metres from the Arabian Sea, a simple, clean, white, seaside café was created and branded "The Seagull Café". It features bright yellow and white polythylene chairs designed by Phillipe Starck; white outdoor screens hide the exterior pipes and windows of the building. On some screens there are graphic images of the odd seagull seated or flying above the waves of the ocean, and in selected areas newly added yellow canopies cast a warm glow, like a ray of sunshine.
Architect | Shilpa Patankar
CURRAE BIRTHING CENTER
A luxury birthing center in a hospital exclusive to women, was planned in an upcoming suburb in Mumbai. In order to introduce a more humane approach to the entire birthing process, and as an extension to the new logo of Currae Healthcare where birds are flying out of an open red cross, the concept of nesting was born. A silver tree with a wooden nest and white acrylic birds flying out from the nest covers the entrance wall of the hospital. In the double height ceiling space of the lobby, white,cloud-shaped hanging lamps, specially handcrafted in fabric from Pondicherry, are surrounded by 3D birds in flight. The patient rooms have trees with shelves, some with floral garden wallpaper, to continue the theme even inside intimate spaces.
Architect | Prashant Desai
For just one store in a quaint Parsi neighbourhood in Mumbai, a brownie box with a childlike illustration of the same street with a Parisian flair was created. In this drawing, the Theobroma Bakery & Patisserie appeared as part of the charming neighbourhood, replete with the familiar horse carriages of the area,with pastries arranged in windows and on the street. By popular demand, this led to a change in all the brand's imagery including the interiors of the stores, now 12 in Mumbai alone. All the packaging for biscuits, macaroons, small tea cakes and big birthday cakes are created with the same illustration to reflect interior spaces: a small tea table with chairs, a window seat, photo frames and chandeliers, even the occasional cat or dog curled up on a mat. These illustrations are coupled with paper doilies, gingham checks and floral prints, transporting us into a fantasy world with pastries and cakes everywhere.
LAKME FLAGSHIP SALON
The brief was to create a flagship retail store that would showcase Lakme’s new Absolut range of make-up formulated especially for the Indian market.Its look and feel would then be replicated at Lakme outlets across the country. After many years of being associated with India Fashion Week, the idea of bringing the backstage expertise to the forefront was a concept unique to Lakme, and this became my theme. For the wallpaper, we shot dramatic black and white images of the models getting ready before they hit the catwalk. The space is designed to echo the glamorous world of models, their make up and grooming, the last-minute fixes before stepping on stage and walking the ramp – a personal backstage.
Architect | Figments Photography | Farrokh Chothia