The Aria hotel situated in Nashik, the wine-growing region of India, faces a river, a dam along with hills, from its north side. Hotel’s entry is at the lowest level of the site which gently rises from its southern side. Moreover, this side rises up into the hills that are in close proximity to the site. The property includes a large banquet hall of 15000 sq ft in addition to 60 rooms and other facilities as required by the owner essentially.
Since the banquet hall would have large gatherings, its access is planned directly from the road frontage at the lowest level of the site. The public facilities including the hotel lobby, restaurant, bar, spa and business center, occupy a higher level. These are 6 meters above the banquet hall and entry can be done directly from an ascending approach road.
The rooms are at a higher level, oriented to face the river in the north or the immediate hills in the south. These rooms comprise open circulation spaces, natural ventilation and skylit courtyards. Each level of the hotel is integrated with the natural contours of the site, minimizing land cutting and landfills. For instance, no soil was taken out of the site or brought into the site while constructing. Therefore, the construction became both economical and sustainable.
Over fifty percent of the walls are made with natural black basalt stone, available close to the site. All the circulation spaces are also naturally lit and ventilated, increasing the energy efficiency of the building. Moreover, there are solar panels on the rooftop, over the banquet kitchen and in the parking areas. These panels help to generate half of the electrical energy, required by the hotel.
Aria hotel’s design also comprises of rainwater harvesting tanks, for water recycling & reuse. This further adds to the sustainable methods used in hotel architecture. All the rooms, restaurants, spa & banquets open into sheltered balconies and decks. These areas provide outdoor usable spaces whilst minimizing the heat gain into the internal volumes.
On each floor, the rooms form rectilinear cuboids that are angled differently. This creates the balconies to frame the picturesque surroundings with 2 floor high suites at the topmost levels. Painted in terracotta color stucco, these frames are juxtaposed with the black basalt stone walls of the lower floors.
In short, Aria Hotel is designed contextually, in symmetry with the site. It balances with the contours, the views of the surroundings, the climate and the materials, creating a web of experiences within its different volumes.
About the Architecture firm – Sanjay Puri Architects
Sanjay Puri Architects is an architectural firm based in Mumbai, India that was started by Sanjay Puri, the principal architect of the firm. With a young team of over 72 architects, the firm has a diverse portfolio of projects including townships, residential developments, software parks, hotels, retail malls, schools, and smaller individual projects. Architect Sanjay Puri is an alumnus of Mayo College, Ajmer and St. Xaviers College, Mumbai, graduated from the Academy of Architecture, Mumbai in 1988.
Location: Nashik, Maharastra, India
Dimension: 3.2 Acre (Plot Area); 13935 sq.m. (Total built-up)
Start Year: June 2016
Completion Date: February 2020
Architecture Firm: Sanjay Puri Architects
Lead Architect: Sanjay Puri
Design Team: Toral Doshi, Manjeet Khatri, Sudhir Ambasana, Dipti Patil
Photo Credit: Dinesh Mehta