It looks a little more like a space shuttle crash site than a residential structure. There is a method to this architectural madness, though, in the views the layers of terraced platforms afford of city, sea and sky from a hillside over Mumbai. The angular cuboid “House in Alibag” by Malik Architecture not only has a wild futuristic look, almost like an abstracted bird that’s about to fly away, it has one of the most awesome rooftop pools you’ve ever seen.
A series of exterior decks, walkways and bridges engage the landscape on multiple levels, making the home as much about movement (as its abstract forms suggest) as it is about dwelling.
A rooftop-deck infinity pool interfaces seamlessly with the architecture itself, and provides a connection for those swimming within it to the outside both by virtue of its edge-less-ness and the way it is thrust like a stage out over the ground below.
Thick concrete below both conceptually and physically supports steel above, including metal-and-glass residential tubes containing bedrooms, bathrooms and other private spaces outside of the more-open central atria.
Similarly geometric themes play out at other levels, from built-in planters on the ground level to interiors reminiscent of fractured glass or the refraction of diamonds.
Its designers wax ecstatic about the structure and the theory underpinning it, but at the end of the day this is something that fails or succeeds in the experience of the space … and the eye of the beholder.
More from the architects
“The site for this home is a hill in Alibag, an erstwhile village near Mumbai which has now become a destination for resorts and second homes. The site enjoys a stunning view, not only of the rolling contours surrounding it, but of the sea and the skyline of Mumbai in the distance. Conceptually, the design of the home is a departure from the ‘stepped terrace’ typology that one would conventionally employ on a heavily contoured site. Instead, we chose to deconstruct a cuboid that is tilted and suspended over the ground and seems to simultaneously ‘float’ and ‘flow’ down the hill.”
“The creation of singular sensory experiences has been the primary organizing and sculpting vector. Numerous geometric inflections and articulations are designed to engage the senses in unconventional ways. A walk through the house is meant to yield unique moments of being suspended in space, of intimate enclosure, of vertiginous assaults but most importantly, of being connected to nature. The structure follows the design philosophy with concrete planes making contact with the ground, while steel floats above it. The home seems to conduct a constant dialogue with the ground on which it rests; it is informed by the earth but chooses at certain junctures to thrust over a precipice, completely oblivious of it.”