It’s often said that you shouldn’t change your mechanic or hairdresser but perhaps that should also extend to your designer—especially if he or she is designing your home.
For Ramesh Seshan, founder and managing director of Seshan Design, the clients in question were Seshan Design's second when he started out as a one-man firm back in 2008. Ramesh had helped design a home for them in Bangsar when they were dating and later a home in Damansara Heights when they got married.
Fast forward to 2018, with two kids in tow, they felt that it was time to finally build a purpose-built bungalow for themselves and they naturally came to Ramesh. The process began with Ramesh and the clients “shopping” for an ideal piece of land. After viewing and evaluating about half a dozen sites, they settled on one which fulfilled their wish list for privacy and security ,and was large enough to fit in a 20m lap pool.
The chosen site was a long narrow lot measuring 10,375 sq ft. Being a good three metres higher than the entry road made it ideal for a sub-basement car park. For privacy, the pool was aligned to the south since the neighbour at that end had built away from the boundary, thus resulting in an inverted L-shaped building. “The clients are very physically and socially active and do yoga and rock climbing, not to mention having a lot of friends (theirs and their children's) over a lot,” explains Ramesh.
To cater to this, the ground floor was designed to entertain large crowds with a large foyer leading either to the gym cum pool deck or open double volume living room which further opens out to the dining and show kitchen beyond. The gym-and-yoga space was created to face the pool which incorporated a climbing wall system while a large powder room with a large shower was introduced to cater for events such as pool parties where their friends could also bring their kids.
The designers designed two double volume spaces to create the illusion of expanse and continuity of the line of sight. The first is the living room with the double volume feature brick wall and massive 8-foot diameter Airegard fan above.
“This pretty much anchors the heart of the house, allowing the line of sight to and from the family room, above into the living room, dining and kitchen below. The family room has louvred shutters to provide for some visual and sound privacy,” explains Ramesh.
The second double volume space is above the gym to allow for the indoor sports climbing wall and for the study to have an expansive view of the pool and wall climbing space.
The main staircase became the key vertical feature element together with a glass platform that takes a prominent position to the right as you enter. The top of the stairs has a full jacked roof skylight to allow natural light to penetrate all the way down to the lower ground and also creates a four-storey stack effect as hot air rises and escapes through the overlapping glass just under the skylight.