An Eclectic House With A Courtyard In Kerala, India

Designed for Noufal Charan, his wife, and three children, House of Noufal reflects its owners natural curiosity, open mindset, and love for traveling. The homeowners’ main desire was that their 242 square meter home should be unique, even weird, and packed with surprises. The team at 3dor Concepts combined modern architecture with traditional Kerala architecture to conjure up the climatically responsive tropical house in Pazhayangadi, Kannur. The design features a dramatically sloping roof that anchors widely into ground. This distinctive feature gives the house an unusual form, which proves practical for granting the house shelter from beating sunshine or heavy rain during the summer monsoon season.

Photographer: Syam Sreesylam  

In Kannur, a northern district in Kerala, India, heavy rains are experienced in the wet maritime climate. In answer to the challenges that the climate brings, the architectural team imagined a great, overhanging, roofline that is a broad umbrella in the summer monsoon season and a parasol in the sun.

Steel framework slopes from the pitch of the roof down into the yard, solidly anchoring the structure.

Local tiles cover the massive roof gradient, broken only by a wide stripe of windows that serve the first floor.

A simple metal fence separates the unique house from the street. Mature plants grow up behind the bars of the fence to offer privacy.

In the small township of Pazhayangadi, towering palm trees grow between neighboring properties, giving the place a lush appearance with an enlivened atmosphere.

The outer walls of the house are broken by wide openings, which gives the rustic stone facade a lighter look.

Traditional-Kerala wooden louvered doors connect the home interior with a small terrace and the rest of the garden.

At night, interior light spills warmly through the wooden shutters, highlighting the open terrace like a great lantern.

The home interior is divided into two by a courtyard. At one side of the courtyard, a comfortable living room is furnished with an elegant, floral chaise lounge, a natural jute rug, and a solid wood coffee table.

Behind the chaise lounge, a traditional wooden dining set is set against a coolly contrasting stone feature wall. A dining bench receives a flexible number of guests.

Wicker dining room pendant lights provide a warm glow above the table, which creates a welcoming atmosphere at meal times.

A metal staircase design rises from the courtyard at the core of the ground floor. The courtyard acts as a divide between the social spaces on one side and the private bedrooms and kitchen on the other.

The central courtyard provides natural lighting and cross ventilation for passive cooling. A wooden bench is constructed between two support columns to fashion a peaceful area of contemplation amongst the plants and pebbles.

A double-height void unfolds above the courtyard. First floor balconies look down into the pleasantly planted vignette.

Inlays add eye-catching detail to the concrete floors.

Reclaimed furniture was given a new lease of life whilst retaining traditional detailing.

Large natural boulders appear around the courtyard. The largest serves as the first tread in the bespoke staircase design.

The kitchen is a simple, wooden installation. Open shelving performs both practical and aesthetic purposes.

Ground floor bedrooms are accessed just off the kitchen diner.

The wide stripe of windows across the sloping roof makes a magnificent skylight, which pours sunlight onto the stairs.

Pivoting doors bring a gentle breeze into the property that makes its way through the double-height volume.

The first floor landing comes alive under a blissful expanse of natural daylight and an enriching green vista. A telescope is positioned to look out of the sloping roof windows at the stars.

A woven bench and matching stools make up a small sitting area on the landing. Two more bedrooms and bathrooms are situated on the first floor.

Inside the master bedroom, a wood slatted feature wall achieves a deeply textural and visually warming effect. A wooden ceiling fan comfortably cools the room.

A wooden bedside table stretches out in a modern linear fashion, whilst supported by elegantly traditional turned legs. A vintage-style table lamp emits a cozy orange glow.

A mezzanine gives the home a third level that skims just below the rafters. Wooden wall shelves display a collection of small decorative vases.

Outside, the low slope of the enormous roof provides shelter over the narrow terrace. At one end of the concrete terrace, a small fishpond is active with colorful life and bubbling water.

Two woven stools furnish the concrete terrace, giving the homeowners and their children a place to sit and observe the pond life or look out upon the garden.

The site plan illustrates the full stretch of roof supports that burrow down into the plot. We can also see how the front pathway connects to a parking area at the side of the house, winding underneath one of the struts.

Ground floor plan. Here, we see the distribution of space between the main living areas and two ground floor bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms. We also discover a scullery hidden behind the kitchen, which keeps the kitchen mess concealed from the view of social spaces.

First floor plan, including two upstairs bedrooms and ensuite bathrooms, plus a small sitting area. Stairs lead to the mezzanine.

Mezzanine level, plus utility room and an open terrace.

Section drawing and front elevation.

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