The Joint-Family Penthouse Designed By GRCA

Architecture Classics

Location : Malleshwaram, Bangalore
Year : 2013
Design Team : GRCA

The Joint-Family Penthouse Designed By GRCA Is An Exquisite Family Home That Portrays Transformation From Its Insipid Form To A Social Family dwelling.



Breaking the notion that a penthouse can only stand true to its meaning with all the modernity and western elements, and giving room to traditional elements and concepts, a generic penthouse has been modified and customized as a unique home for a joint family in Bangalore. This penthouse is designed by GRCA on the seventeenth floor of the building for a Marwari-Joint family of two brothers and their respective wives and children, along with their parents.


Going beyond the standard plan-based typology, this penthouse has been designed unconventionally, metamorphosing from a typical apartment to its new shape. The plan is emerged from a wiped clean slate breaking the walls and repositioning them. It has been re structured by renovating the slabs to create a social inhabit for the individuals and the family.

Combining privacy with socializing living space as the clients demanded, the concept of fluid and dynamic spaces are the mainstream of the entire project and has been applied for all levels and spaces, like the main living space, master bedroom, working room and outdoor space allowing continues journey between the spaces.

The most noteworthy element is the family room that hangs at the heart of the house. The hall and the main living space are the first threshold from communal area to the private domain. In contrast with other domestic interior designs, the main living space is designed to be the focal room of the house. The brother and their wives are given the upper level for its privacy and the parents and children are on the lower level with the dining, living and other areas. The intent was to break the typological context into a more personal and customized one, one which escapes from stylistic and meaningless to the meaningful and pure.

The penthouse is crafted under the concept of ‘carved hidden volumes’ where cut-outs are made to join the floors creating a play of volumes. At a formal level, after a typical apartment entry to the house, a new and hidden volume explores itself. Designed as a customized social haunt of an engaged joint family, these volumes house the interactive and social spaces of the penthouse. Two cut-outs are made to connect the private-upstairs and the public-downstairs, from which the brothers can overlook and engage into the dialogue of the house. Showing this new unique side of it, the cut-out and passages become part of the void which resonates with the social dialogue in the new direction of the house where the hidden volume connects the public spaces.




The children’s bedroom work as a guest room as well when in need. The children have an option to tuck into individual bunk niches, which become their spaces in the house. They can access the upper level and the play area, all under their grandparent’s watchful eye. The ladies of the house spend most of the day on the lower level with the retired grandparents in the kitchen, living and dining areas. The staircase is fashioned in a way where it becomes a space for gathering and discussion, and also a vantage over the children’s play area.



Looking at the larger questions than usually allowed by the brief, the joint family penthouse emerges as an interior and renovation project, and in its bravery, it creates a confident, social cohesive that is consistent to its details as it is in its larger intent. Design of the slightest of details and nuances of various aspects of the interior is attempted through the project as the penthouse seamlessly blends traditional elements with modern interiors featuring fine. The white surfaces with discrete, novel forms unify the house, and provide the ideal canvas for a splash of colour. The yellow wall, the courtyards, the wood, the clear and minimal upstairs, the wooden blinds and the contemporary bathroom each derived from the plural nature of the family members, coexist exactly like a family.






The carefully selected decor with intriguing lighting design and customized artworks add character to the spaces. Be it climbing the dramatic staircase or dining at the breakfast table, the attempted blending of artistry into every space elevates its humble function to an event.






Headed by architect Gaurav Roy Choudhury, GRCA aims to articulate the various movements that assimilate context, taking the project brief from the “said” to the “unsaid. The firm handles projects in architecture, interior design, graphic design, urban design and housing projects, mainly in and
around Bangalore. GRCA strives to absorb all domains of influence and exposure, with the hopes of redefining honest architecture through a process of re-invention and storytelling. Its path lies in the understood, and its eyes on the unexplored.

Architect Gaurav Roy Choudhury uses design to express the need and purpose of the space. ´Be honest to design and observations and most of all, to yourself, says Architect Gaurav Roy Choudhury who, in eight years of practice, has already established himself as an architect with a difference. He believes that design is basically an introverted exercise whose manifestation we see outside, but that does not mean we have to constantly look outside to understand it. An architect who believes in spending time and developing an understanding of everything while giving lessons of how to bring designs to life is something that can be learnt from Roy Choudhury through his selected projects.

-Shruti Simpi, Volume Zero

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