Restoration of 120-Year-Old Madhav Bagh a Boutique Home
Restoration of 120-Year-Old Madhav Bagh a Boutique Home
Architecture true to its original character where this 120-year-old mansion posed a challenge to the interior designers Nandita Ghatge and Rajesh Achrekar of Kagal Craft, given the unused state it was currently in. The ravages of time had wreaked their revenge on the building.
The architects completed the restoration in record time keeping in mind the cost escalation. Its owners gave the designers a free hand in all other aspects such as re-modelling, the façade and the interiors. Many antiques and restored old wood to pieces were handcrafted to perfection. New bathrooms are added to match the rich architecture where hand-blocked silk curtain is painstakingly designed by the designers and executed locally that are the pride of the estate.
Old furniture created a lot of new furniture from old Burma teak wood. Numerous trips were made over Gujarat and Rajasthan were made to get old architecture salvage, which was crafted, into exquisite counters and mirrors. New Italian style flooring is made to match the old ambience where the whole ambience had to have an old-world charm with open rooms, full of light and modern comfort.
The old doors had to be stripped of years of oil paint to reveal the beauty of old teak where the walls have been painstakingly stencilled to add glamour. The bathrooms are a piece of art is beautifully handmade tiles. Given the budget and other constraints, owners Shivraj and Indrayani Gaekwad where the project eventually went off as if a dream also put in a lot of effort and hard work.
The mansion is built in the golden indo British era in the Indo Saracenic style. The house is a clever mix of Indian Gothic, Mughal, Portuguese and Buddhist influences. It’s an architects fantasy featuring English turrets, Rajput Jharoka balconies, Gothic arches .the designers have kept the charming red brick shell of the old indo-sarcenic mansion without compromising on modern comforts. Beautiful turquoises, greys, blues vie with dramatic arched doorways. The brief by Shivraj to the designer was to let the interior and restoration be true to the original architecture.
“It was a stupendous task to restore and curate the lower wing as that section wasn’t used for many years keeping in mind the extraordinary architecture. We tried to keep the fabric and the structure of the building intact. The challenge was to achieve it in a conservative budget without compromising on the quality. Besides none of the rooms had ensuite bathrooms which had to be added without disturbing the core building”, says Nandita.
Every detail is meticulously planned, the bathroom friezes, to the hand-blocked curtains designed and excited by local block printers. Furniture was made from old salvaged architecture wood.” Madhavbagh now has meticulously restored and ensuite rooms, lounges, courtyards and gardens interspersed with old antiques restored furniture and photographs. There, however, no compromise is made on the modern comforts with fabulous bathrooms, comfortable mattresses, air-conditioned and well-ventilated rooms. The lounge has access to the gardens and a powder room and with a verandah looking out to the grand fountain. The garden has a cosy breakfast area. Living room colours are a muted olive green with beautiful Italian style floors. Here you can enjoy masala tea with samosas or an English tea with cakes and cucumber sandwiches, like the mansion the food is eclectic too.
Lunches and dinners served in the main lounge or alfresco under the cotton trees. Madhav Bagh rooms are laid out in the traditional Indian style opening into a beautiful courtyard with a tiny pink marble fountain. Gently lit by filigreed brass lanterns. The colours are vibrant and rich. All rooms in this listed mansion have a unique layout, period details, including stone floors, stain-glassed arched doorways, and antique furniture, made to order hand-blocked silk curtains. Lofty ceilings and handcrafted stencils .opening out into the large garden with cotton and mango trees.
The Blue and the yellow room is the beautiful arched bedroom with blue and white stencils that overlooks the courtyard with a fountain. An ensuite large bathroom with handmade cobalt blue tiles and old antique counters with two rooms that have single comfortable beds with workspace etc. The peach Paisley room has views of old trees overlooking a lot of greenery and a small private sit-out with access to the garden. The room is stencilled in paisleys and Moroccan lights There is access through dressing area to the bathroom with stunning turquoise and cobalt blue handmade fish scale tiles shower panel designed artistically. A large mirror handcrafted with old carvings in the bathroom will wash away your blues. The chairs are upholstered in yellow Inkat with made to order silk hand blocked curtains.
The grand turquoise suite is all set for an old-world charm where the bedroom has two oversized single antique chattri beds with comfortable mattresses. The rich turquoise wall has been painstaking stencilled. The curtains are silked hand blocked made to order to suit the ambience. The special dressing area has a small Diwan bed to lounge around on a lazy morning. The 21 feet long bathroom is a masterpiece in handcrafted inlaid tiles. It is romantic with bathtub with a special alcove shower. Take a peek into the small private bookshelf and a private sit-out overlooking the garden.
The silver-grey and red room.
A cosy room with a huge four-poster bed crafted on-site with old Burma teak wood with its own antique wardrobe, desk, fridge and tea maker, the walls are hand stencilled .bathroom is decorated with red and grey arabesque handmade tiles inlaid to perfection. The curtains match the room with their rich silver grey and red hand block prints. The old photographs and paintings add to charm a Gujarat jhoola swing to enjoy your cup of tea overlooking the courtyard. The gardens are large with the most beautiful fountain one of the rare fountain made in England huge old shaded mango and cotton trees. One can enjoy a quiet time reading a book, hammocks to relax or sipping a hot cup of coffee.
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