PAA, Priyanka Arjun, Contemporary house, Contextual design, Climate sensitive designs, Rajasthani art, Courtyard house, Stone facade, Sustainable design

A perfect courtyard home in Rajasthan

PAA designs a climate-sensitive house in Rajasthan with a vibrant touch of local art

This story began with a quest to create the perfect dream home at the foothills of Aravali Hills with a scenic Lake view. The exterior aggrandize the beauty of  surroundings. Whilst internal planning follows passive climate control and function. The central courtyard suits the hot and dry climate of Rajasthan and allows light, ventilation and communication with the upper floor. Exterior has a composite stone wall proving as a good insulator, solar power and bio-digester tank makes it a sustainable abode.

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“Spatially, all spaces open to the central courtyard, which has natural light through the day and stars can be seen through at night. The house is seamless in planning. The matrix of private and semi-private spaces is created in a way that volume and scale strike a balance, resulting in each space complementing the other,” explains founder of PAA, Priyanka Arjun.

There is no false-ceiling except in toilets, all electrical, lighting and low voltage services were planned and executed beforehand. The central courtyard has 6'-9'' projection, done in RCC, designed in tapered form to avoid rectangular beam brackets. The courtyard gives a central void space, the shunya, with light entering from top. This also creates vertical air-flow in hot and dry regions. Small openings are kept at top to vent out hot air.

Dining area has a big picture window touching the ceiling. Big picture windows on the North side ensures  that more natural light washes the floors and ceilings.  
Conventional framed structure is modified to have a stone and brick composite wall. This facilitates thermal insulation from the exterior and integration of electrical services in the  interiors. Design is such that RCC beams and columns are enveloped in stone on the outside and brick on the inside. Exterior wall is a six inch thick stone wall composed of Chittor; every stone was manually cut by local craftsmen on site.


All floor is white marble from Udaipur, ensuring less carbon footprint. Rustic salvaged doors add to the character of the home. The furniture and furnishings are sourced from different parts of Rajasthan. Another feature worth a mention is the use of local arts and crafts to enhance the interior spaces. The intricately painted ceiling breathes life into the house. Local craftsmen were employed so that this dying art can be revived.


“This is not a house but a home reflecting the personalities of the owners. They have great taste and their choice of paintings, furniture and furnishings add to the rustic beauty of this wonderful home. This is a sustainable home with style and contribution to the environment,” concludes Arjun.

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