The story of this project begins with two separate residences, located in the city of Muzaffarnagar in northern Uttar Pradesh, India. These two asymmetrical entities were to be expertly stitched together by the architectural team at Portal 92 to become one impressive 3400 square meter property. The Hem House refurbishment and redevelopment project was completed in 2022, hidden behind a new facade that disguises its original formation. The reconfigured facade achieves a loose symmetry, despite its asymmetric roots, to achieve a homogenous impression. A huge portico acts as a central anchor point, from which further linear volumes rise and fall. Wooden louver details make warm and textural pauses in the smooth, cool white concrete render.

Photographer: Niveditaa Gupta  

From the outside, the Hem House appears as a singular purpose-built home. On each side of a massive central portico, the ground floor facade is crowned with a balcony of floral plants. The plants cascade down the flat white concrete to soften and lighten its visual load, blending it harmoniously with the green landscape.

Because the Hem house was once two separate residences, one side of the modern home exterior climbs higher than the other. In a push toward vertical symmetry, a covered roof area has been raised in balance. Fenestration is highlighted with wooden louver shades, which keep the eye moving and exploring.

At the back of the property, a peaceful patio area connects with the lawned garden. Concrete slabs make modern stepping stones across the grass and a body of water, which blurs the boundaries of where architecture ends and nature begins.

Modern landscaping is trimmed into an angular formation around the front of the home. The lush green lawn is cut away to accommodate a large driveway for multiple vehicles. Small shrubs create an attractive border around the lawn. Others flourish within built-in concrete planters around the home entrance.

The grand front entrance to the home is cleverly configured with the portico, which draws attention away from the two original doorways into each house. Under the protection of the canopy, wide glass doors are shaded from direct sunlight.

The huge portico visually grounds the building and successfully achieves a look of singularity. Elegant wooden louver details build organized asymmetry and attractive framing for planters.

Upon closer inspection, we discover the original doors into the two properties.

The modern wood slatted doors become lost amongst the wooden louver details.

Restful outdoor recreational areas feature concrete render, soft limestone, and Thermo-Ash wood. Shady overhangs offer refuge from the burning sunshine. An abundance of plants feather the edges of the cool retreat.

Two unique outdoor coffee tables furnish the center of the patio seating area, whilst built-in benches are bedded into the borders. Small ceramic vases and candle holders provide modest decoration to the table tops. A small stone bird perches next to a tree.

Beautiful forms spring from modest materials. A striking, undulating bench design stands in solid concrete. Its cantilevered, chaise lounge silhouette reaches out across a narrow decked area, where spherical stone garden ornaments randomly dot the ground.

The curvy bench design counteracts the streamlined linearity of the home’s architecture. The canopy above the terrace is clad with rich-toned wooden planks to create an indoor-outdoor living experience that feels warm and welcoming.

Abundant green ground cover plants pop up between the paving slabs and concrete stepping stones to bring a natural balance to the modern home exterior. The translucent leaves and slender branches of small trees create light play across the pale wall render.

Inside the Hem house, the central common space brings together the members of the family. The reconfigured interior delivers a large new living room as a result of smaller rooms being stitched together; a reimagined layout that gives the property fresh meaning for a new lifestyle. Gray decor gives the interior spaces a cool aesthetic, whilst natural wood and rattan accents provide warming elements.

The interior decor scheme is shaped with cozy curves. A rounded concrete wall wraps around the back of a curvy sofa design. A curved wood and wicker room divider protectively embraces an intimate formal dining area. Whilst the wicker screen separates the dining room from the rest of the living space, it also allows natural light to filter through.

Metallic table legs catch the light, giving the dining space a luxurious shimmer. A huge vase makes an eye-catching table centerpiece. Above the table, a modern dining room chandelier features a trendy inverted arch motif.

Opposite the main living space, a rustic wooden step marks a change in zone. The step assists entry into a small, concrete courtyard design, where an assortment of large ceramic pots and wicker baskets make attractive decorations.

A round window briefly peeps into the neighboring kitchen, like a traditional serving hatch. A wall of open kitchen shelving creates an atmospherically lit backdrop. A collection of colorful kitchenware and decorative vases adorn the open shelving wall and a unique, cantilevered kitchen island. Unique pendant lights fall low to the kitchen island to provide focused task lighting.

Another curved sofa is situated just by the kitchen island, giving the cook a comfortable place to peruse recipes. Textured concrete tiles clad the walls with a reeded pattern that complements the rattan screen construction.

A wide skylight floods the courtyard with sunlight. A wide circular window looks out upon the city.

Check out the home tour video:

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