SIMULATING NATURE WITHIN SPACES
Architect and Interiors India|May 2021
TAJ RESORT AND SPA, DESIGNED BY EDIFICE CONSULTANTS, IS THE MORPHOLOGY OF THE TRADITIONAL HIMALAYAN VILLAGE WITH A STRUCTURE THAT NEGOTIATES AND CREATES A DIALOGUE WITH THE CONTOURS.

PROJECT INFORMATION

Typology: Hospitality

Name of project: Taj Rishikesh Resort & Spa Location: Rishikesh Client: Darramecks hotels pvt. ltd

Principal architect: Edifice Consultants Pvt. Ltd. Design team: Radhika Dey, Pallavi Jitkar, Binu Kuriakose, Akshata Bane, Kolathu Baskaran

Site area: 22 Acres

Built-up area: 1,10,000 Sq. Ft.

Photographer: Bharath Ramamrutham

Taj Resort and Spa is the morphology of the traditional Himalayan village with a structure that negotiates and creates a dialogue with the contours. The relationship of the design with the rivers and rivulets in the valleys, the materiality, local construction knowledge and memorable collaborations are all crucial determinants of the architectural concept.

Arjun Mehra, MD at Darrameks Hotels & Developers Pvt. Ltd, had emotional ties with the site, which, through the design journey of the project, became even more personal. Arjun’s brief was for an architecture that shows respect to the environment and the surroundings while underlining the brand’s commitment to the superior quality of design and workmanship. The client engaged YH2 to develop the master plan and propose an architectural concept for the resort. The team at Edifice translated that vision into reality through a deep understanding of the regional building practices and domestic know-how.

Location of Taj at the foothills of the Himalayas and the serendipitous presence of the holy river Ganges marked the advent of its design language. Formerly, used for stepped farming, the natural terrain of the site invited us to place the built structures on the flat terraces, thereby allowing the untouched parts of the landscape to remain natural and pristine!

The design merges with the neighbourhood and magnifies the rustic settings of nature. The site planning mimics the traditional Himalayan villages, anchored around a Darbargadh, the traditional residence of local rajas or lords which further translates into the design. The walled courtyard of traditional Darbargadhs or the fortress-palace-temples, offer at their heart protection to the villagers in times of war or served as socializing space promoting community life in harmonious times. The main block of the hotel that overlooks the valley creates the image of a traditional Darbargadh. It provides a central location for gathering all the primary services of the resort: the reception, restaurant, bar, boutique, library, and more.

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