Text: Meghna Mehta
Project: Windmills of Your Mind
Location: Bangalore, India
Designer: Shibanee & Kamal Architects
WAF Shortlisted Category: WAF Completed Buildings | Housing, Large Scale
Windmills of Your Mind in Bangalore, India’s Silicon Valley, is a 24-acre residential development located at the edge of a small lake, encompassing 1.75 million sqft spread over seven 19-storey apartment buildings and 73 independent villas. Nature stands center-stage for this design, with a horizontal landscaped green area larger than the land on which it is built, with over 3000 trees interspersed throughout the campus.
The architecture and interiors of the homes are modern with clean lines defining vast open spaces that have been intelligently balanced to offer privacy and expansiveness. Large French windows and louvers that filter in natural light and offer uninterrupted views of the garden plays a key role in the design scheme.
The duplex apartments are arranged in a linear pattern to optimize views of the lake, while ensuring complete privacy for the homes. Most spaces from both levels overlook the terraced garden and the water body. The simplex apartments are housed in circular towers; four homes placed back to back, wherein each ‘L’ shaped plan occupies one quadrant of the circle.
Each villa located near the lake is placed along the edge of the plot – the L-shaped layouts sharing a common wall each, thus facilitating larger gardens for each home, while substantially increasing the distance between the windows of two adjacent building structures, thereby enhancing privacy.
All the villas are capped with curved sloping green roofs, giving an added advantage of reducing rain water runoff and keeping the homes cooler in summer and warmer in winter. The building exteriors are constructed with customized wire-cut bricks that require minimal maintenance without any plastering or painting. Natural soft stones such as Italian marble, Kota and Jaisalmer stone are used for the flooring in the inner spaces and the lobbies – the advantage of these being that they remain cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter months.
The interiors of the homes are carefully orchestrated to address the needs of a contemporary lifestyle, with top-of-the-line fixtures and finishes, exquisite craftsmanship and meticulous detailing. The project is rather unique wherein living spaces are in harmony with nature, and there is a comprehensive focus on aesthetics, quality and vibrant community living where people from all over the world can feel at home, making Windmills of your Mind a one-of-a-kind property.
What makes this project unique?
“The central idea is about creating a powerful connect with nature and therefore the different home typologies as well as the community spaces, are all designed to wrap around densely landscaped gardens with large openings to help blur boundaries between the indoors and outdoors.
Also important is the intimate scale; the single family homes have been designed with a one storey living space along the road and then split into two levels behind, leaving it spacious and airy towards the rear section.”
Why do you think this project stands out and will excel at WAF?
“Windmills of Your Mind takes on the challenge of poor quality of life in large scale housing within our crowded cities and successfully provides a blueprint for high quality living in the city.
Every home in the property has almost all rooms opening through wall to wall sliding panels onto a garden that makes one engage with nature. With green roofs and large terraced gardens, the total landscaped area in the project is 110% of the land area that the project is built on. There are homeowners growing banana trees even on the 12th floor and with the exposed brick, concrete exteriors, cobble stone streets, it blends elegantly into the landscape and will age gracefully with time.
It stands out because it successfully provides a significantly higher quality of life to it’s residents.”