The rule is (seemingly) simple for Beyond Designs’ Sachin and Neha Gupta: fuse the charm of classical design with a fresh, modern touch and you have a house that is perfect for the present generation. And that’s just what you’ll find in their recent project for a young New Delhi couple.
Text: Carol Ferrao; Photographs: Atul Pratap Chauhan, courtesy Beyond Designs
Back in the 1990s, a marketing campaign popularized the phrase ‘go big or go home’. Years later, we have a popular lifestyle brand called Beyond Designs turning that phrase on its head with a residential project, a home that itself is an epitome of grandeur and luxury. Designed for a young couple and their two kids in the South Delhi neighbourhood of Chattarpur, it exhibits an opulence that is strangely inviting as opposed to intimidating. Maybe because it is “a harmonious medley of genres, materials and styles that finally spell a fresh, contemporary, liveable environment,” as the principal designers Sachin and Neha Gupta describe it.
The Guptas were trusted with this revamp project having worked with the clients before. “I had a clear idea of their taste and lifestyle, hence I explained to them where I would go bold with colours and style and where I would like to stay neutral and got their okay. After that the clients left everything to us,” shares Neha. Armed with their instinct and keeping in mind the requirements of the space, the duo arrived at a classic-contemporary ethos for the home, marked with bold and flamboyant touches. “We believe in fusing old-world designs and crafts from around the globe with the new to come up with a unique amalgam that works for the present generation,” she explains.
Designing this home meant keeping two crucial aspects in mind — the client’s love for entertaining and their need for spaces in the house that are private and their very own. This inspired the designers to maintain the ground floor for socializing and entertaining and develop a more intimate area on the first floor for the family. While the ground level comprises the foyer and corridor with a long winding staircase, a formal living room, dining room, cigar room, bar room and a guest room; the first floor has a family room with a small pantry and three bedrooms, including the master bedroom.
At the foyer itself you know this is going to be a home unlike any other. A red wallpaper with lion motifs contrasts dramatically with the chequered flooring and the framed mirror ceiling. Entering the formal living room, you are invited into a more subdued, yet opulent palette. Around a Persian carpet lies the welcoming composition of luxurious custom-made sofas by Beyond Designs, ornate chairs upholstered in rich fabrics and animal prints, and a deep wine-toned chair in plush velvet with rivets. Your eyes are naturally drawn to the majestic vintage European-Indian crystal chandelier that is beautifully offset by the colourful canvas on the wall. On the beaten brass centre table with a mirror base, the tall antique gold-finish candle holders too prove a point — this home doesn’t shy away from being bold and loud, it embraces it nonchalantly.
From the formal vibe of the living room when you transition into the vibrant bar, you get an inkling of who the clients are and what they like to do best. As frequent entertainers, this space has become a favourite for the young couple. An installation of antique hand-cut crystal and metal lights highlights a gorgeous cut mirror and gold bar that is set against a blue background. The bar shelves are highlighted with art deco details and the mustard yellow chairs with legs in a black and gold finish add a pop of brightness to the dark scheme.
Flanked with gold-finished mirrors on one side and a custom curated collage of frames on the opposite wall, the dining room blends regal elements with modern sensibilities. The designers highlighted the dining area using one of their trademark strategies — dressing up the ceiling to give a space a distinguished appearance. In this case we have a tiered wooden ceiling that has been padded in deep aubergine velvet. A bespoke silver and crystal chandelier drops beautifully to illuminate the stone-top dining table with a cut mirror base that’s teamed with chair upholstered in blue and vibrant animal prints.
Continuing the theme, the Cigar Room or Library Room switches to a darker, more sophisticated ambience. It is styled intimately with a fireplace, an art deco wood and leather ceiling and a classic wooden sofa with quilted leather upholstery in tan. The prized possession in this room, however, is the Louis Vuitton leather chest, which was a gift from the couple’s parents and is now proudly displayed as a centre table.
This shift in roles from the ground floor to the more private first floor means there is certain transition in the design as well, though without compromising on grandeur. A noticeable change on the first level is the ceiling, which is kept plain with built-in light fixtures. The flooring switches from dramatic marble on the ground floor to warm wood in the bedroom. The family area, which acts as a connecting space, is where the homely vibe really sets in. It faces an adjoining pantry where quick meals can be fixed.
Speaking about the theme for the bedrooms, the designer duo says, “Our philosophy is to create bedrooms as calming sanctuaries. At the same time, we make it a special space with exquisite touches.” A serene pastel hue adorns the master suite with art deco details in the background. Mirror is the dominating material here: the four-poster bed is mirror-finished and complemented by an upholstered ottoman with mirror legs, mirror side tables and mirror TV console. Crystal wall lamps on the bedside and mirror-finish table lamps add to the opulence.
Besides an elaborate wardrobe and washroom, the master suite has a lounge complete with plush seating, a chandelier and a unit for books and knick-knacks. The designers proudly point out, “The elegant master suite is one of the best spaces that (we) have created.” The children’s bedrooms have been planned around a neutral base so that they can develop organically and easily be altered as their requirements change with age.
With such a diverse design uniting the clients’ brief and their aspirations, you realize calling this house a “harmonious medley” is not a clichéd choice of words; there is substance to that description. But more so, the very definition of ‘go big’ can now mean that one can — well, the clients can proudly retreat home.
A classic-contemporary ethos marked with bold and flamboyant touches in social spaces and neutral, minimalist flair in private rooms.
Floor: Marble, Italian marble, hard wood
Walls: Paint, wallpaper, mirror tiles
Ceiling: Mirror, wood, velvet fabric
Furniture: Wood, natural stone, brass
Project: Chattarpur Home
Location: Chattarpur, New Delhi
Area: 20,000 square foot
Principal designer: Sachin and Neha Gupta