Architect: Studio KIA, Gurgaon
Built Up Area: 66,000sqft
Cost of the Project: 45 crores
Project Status: Completed
Client: Umrao Hotels
Design Team: Ar. Rajiv Khanna and Ar. Sabeena Khanna
Slug: Luxury Design
Heading: The Umrao
Intro: Syncing Heritage with the Present
Text: Ar. Himani Ahuja
Photograph Courtesy: Studio KIA
Designed to cater to the discerning business traveller, the Umrao is a boutique hotel located in Delhi on NH-8 in close proximity to international airport. Sitting regally yet lightly on 10 acres of manicured greens, the boutique hotel is a brand to reckon with.
Standing testimony to time, the architectural character adopted by Studio KIA is in sync with its name yet contemporary in its offerings. The word umrao denotes the life and luxury of kings and The Umrao successfully captures the monumental scale and luxury of the past in a modernistic set up. At The Umrao, the architect syncs heritage with the present.
Design and Structure
Transforming modern geometry into an exotic creation, The Umrao makes for one of the most uniquely designed boutique hotels Delhi has ever seen. Minimalist, straight line character, purity of form and subtle colours gives this boutique hotel a unique charm.
“The idea was to establish a hotel that combines the exclusivity expected by the guests in regards to luxury which is visually pleasing and functionally upscale”, says Ar. Sabeena Khanna, Principal Architect at Studio KIA.
He pays tribute to the resplendence of India’s culture with a project like The Umrao in the contrasting urban fabric of New Delhi.
The design elements were conceived in such great detail and converted to actuality that the reality bespeaks the vision envisaged. Blending contemporary design and timeless architecture, the hotel creates an intimate welcoming feeling like none other.
Having a strong indoor-outdoor connect, this boutique hotel has an imposing entrance. Resting stately amidst lush green lawns, an imposing palm lined vista takes the visitor to the transitional court having a focal obelisk from where the guest experience begins to unfold. It combines classical architectural exterior design with contemporary warm interiors. The stunning exteriors with intricate décor envelop guests in a royal mystique.
An independent banquet hall approach separates the hotel guest from the banquet visitor. Manicured banquet lawns and state-of-the-art landscaping, a swimming pool with deck and water features add the nature element to the built mass.
An impressive entrance foyer depicting awe and grandeur is topped with a central imposing dome that creates an interesting play of light and shade in the interiors. A grand welcoming reception and a piano Lounge pamper the guest on arrival. The multi-speciality restaurant, Thyme, offers a sumptuous palette to the visitor.
It accommodates venues namely Elroy, Courtis, Milap and Alameda.
Elroy is the crown jewel of The Umrao with an area of 1,20,000sqft accommodating a gathering of 1000-5000 guests. Hosting an event in Elroy challenges the creativity of the event decorator since each and everything starting from the entrance gate till the flooring of the venue is customisable.
Courtis is the sprawling lawn adjoining the swimming pool with an area of 60,000sqft that can accommodate a gathering of 500-2000 guests. Its huge expanse provides a hint of luxury in the palm of nature.
Milap is known in the wedding world to have hosted some of the best weddings in New Delhi with an area of 80,000sqft accommodating a gathering of a minimum of 1000 guests.
Alameda is the sprawling east-facing lawn with an area of 70,000sqft accommodating a gathering of 500-1000 guests.
A total of 60 well – appointed guest rooms have suites, double rooms, twin rooms and rooms with private outdoor Jacuzzis and are a treat for the business traveller. Offering uninterrupted views of the lush green outdoors, the guest rooms are of varying types depending upon the requirement. Warm and plush offerings bring in the desired comfort and luxury.
A fine dining restaurant, coffee shop, tea lounge, banquet hall with spillover lawns and a beautifully landscaped pool with deck and changing rooms enhance the guest experience. The fine-dining restaurant overlooks the pool and outdoor deck.
The large central atrium serves as a breakfast Lounge and opens up onto the poolside.
Ground Floor: Grand lobby, restaurant, banquets, piano lounge, breakfast lounge, gym and 28 well appointed guest rooms with outdoor Jacuzzis.
First Floor: Grand double height atrium, lift lobby , terrace garden restaurant with lit-up dome, 4 suites and 23 guest rooms, terrace top banquet facility.
RCC post tensioned (PT) slab construction has been used to achieve large column free spans for public usage spaces in the hotel. Shear walls and conventional RCC with brick infill has been used for the stair wells and rooms.
Patterns of flooring create a sensation of virtual space characterised by the superposition of light, transparency, texture and the luxurious colour blend of tan and gold. Italian flooring in public areas, wooden flooring in guest rooms, carpeting in guest room corridors and banquet hall, Italian marble cladding and flooring in toilets and vestibules has been resorted to.
The play of GRC jaali creates an informal intricacy of shadows that are both dramatic and engaging. UPVC windows in the exteriors and teak wood joinery in the interiors has been used.
Lighting, Ventilation and Sustainability
Weaving in with all modern facilities and world class amenities in the hotel, its ventilation, air-conditioning, acoustics and illumination are taken care of. Rainwater harvesting has been resorted to owing to the large green expanse to utilise and recharge ground water ensuring judicious and energy efficient functioning of the hotel. Grass pavers have been used in parking/landscaped areas.
A large number of windows are used. The windows are aptly placed to maximise day lighting, reducing the need for artificial lighting. The use of high efficiency, low emissivity glazing allows high levels of daylight in whist reducing heat losses through windows. Smart, energy saving lighting techniques are used in the corridors which are controlled by movement.
Keeping the ground coverage low and stressing upon the large expansive greens, the carbon footprint of the built mass has been reduced.
All in all at The Umrao, relax in leisure where the past engages the future to make a stylish present.