Design Team : Mohammad Saifullah Siddiqui, Asim Chaudry
Location/ City: DHA, Islamabad
Area: The 830 sqm.
Completion Time: 2 years
Consultants: Structure Consultant: Mr. Talha Afzal, Interior design: DB STUDIO
Surrounded by houses, the client bought the 02 plots to enjoy the open areas & to mainly have a substantial area left as green and build on just one plot. The corner plot had a level difference of 5 ft. from one end to another. The corner plot had a level difference of 5 ft. from one end to another.
The client is an ex-army officer with an experience of building houses. The client wanted to have a big house which could accommodate his own family and also his sons who was eager to return home with his family from USA and settle in their new house for good. Both these family units wanted to have common spaces where they can bond and stay connected while at the same time retaining the privacy of their own areas.
The basic zoning was kept simple. The more important areas were kept towards the north where the main lawn area was located while the low profile areas were kept on the western and southern sides. The architects took advantage of the level difference within the plot and used it in splitting the floor plan resulting in a playful circulation adding interesting visual depths and connections between different common areas and semi-private areas in the interior of the house. This exciting visual connections were also meant to retain a healthy effect on the bonding of the family. The high profile areas like master bedrooms and family lounges were kept on the lawn side with walk through windows. The first floor areas have cozy private terraces with bedrooms.
The facade is an interesting and playful composition of cubic volumes that are either rooms or closet spaces from the inside and planters and terraces in the open area. This volumetric displacement is kept monotone in fair-faced plaster with vertical grooves on the surface. The cubic push n pull create a very dramatic play of shadows and light. The vehicular entry is through the northern gate. One has to climb up through the landscape to 5 ft. higher than the porch. The main entry door is kept in one of the negative spaces created from the protruding cubes. It’s like stepping between these cubes gives it a sense of the cubes surrounding one.
The cubes in the exterior are continued in the interior foyer as well. The entrance foyer is kept triple height with all the floor levels visible. These floor levels are connected through a metal and wood staircase. The foyer has a patio at the lowest level having a golden palm shoot up while also a planter on the top floor giving a sense of the foyer. The diagonal lines of this staircase adds a different taste to the interior as there are no diagonal lines anywhere else in the house. The foyer is culminated by a thin skylight in the end at the top most floor providing interesting play of light and natural light to the live plants inside the foyer. As the foyer is a vertical puncture through the whole house it provides a source of visual connection between different levels and different areas of family living areas.