Indian heritage is one of the most well-preserved cultural treasures in the world. For ages and aeons, it has provided free access to an infinite source of knowledge and wisdom. Indian heritage has been revered as the crescendo of human thinking and living. But in modern times, it has been reduced to glimpses and fragments of a much larger story that lies buried in the dregs of time.
No one clearly knows why the great Indian tradition that gifted the world incredible thoughts and inventions, breakthroughs and revelations, lay grappled in the hands of obscurity and oblivion. A culture that began nearly 70,000 years ago followed by migrations in Africa, the Indian civilizations was one of the earliest cradles of humanity. It remained an elusive mystery why a culture that paved life’s most profound paths was not celebrated enough in daily living.
But, Wait, What’s True Indian Heritage Anyway?
Far from memorabilia stores and ethnic attires, far from the disparate fragments and influences of tradition – a saree here, a carpet there, a wobbling elephantine figurine or a vermillion mark on the forehead – Indian heritage is much more than meets the eye. There’a a big need to revisit this great culture, not just as a fashion statement, but to deeply learn from it about life’s most important values. True Indian heritage lives on, not only as insignias and memorabilia, or in mythological times, but as a way of life. The core of Indian heritage suggests that a life of true fulfilment exists in this chaotic world and is attainable by anyone. Alas, unlike the old Gurukul system, there is no modern way to experience the essence of Indian heritage as a daily truth.
The Creation of a Heritage Project Worth a Wonder
This dream was brought alive in a special way when a unique luxury project took birth in Bangalore. Tucked in the city’s most prominent cultural spot, where legend and lore play with each other, where a thousand untold stories emerge from the lap of tradition, and where divinity and mysticism warp the notion of time, Svasa Homes began its journey. The word Svasa is derived from the Sanskrit word for breath, referring to the importance the Indian tradition has given to the phenomenon of inspiration and expiration.
Inspired by Indian heritage and way of life, Svasa Homes is a project with profound implications and unfathomed possibilities. Especially during a time when most home constructors are focussing on western influences, for a builder to create a top-echelon luxury project whose every corner exudes heritage, is a bold proposition. However, the vision took shape bit by bit, brick by brick, next to the historic Ramakrishna Math in Basavanagudi.
Svasa Homes is an exclusive residential community where residents live surrounded by the most significant aspects of Indian heritage and constantly connected to their roots. Based on the concept of the Wheel of Life which comprises eight important aspects of living (health, wealth, family and friends, career, recreation, environment, personal growth and romance), the Wheel of Life philosophy suggests that all eight aspects must be balanced and fulfilled for a life of total fulfilment. Every space in Svasa Homes connects back to one or more of these eight aspects.
Svasa Jivana Chakra
Another major facet of Svasa Homes that gloriously ties back to Indian heritage is its courtyard design. Courtyard home design is a very Indian thing. Svasa Homes is a highrise project featuring an actual Vedic courtyard design. The courtyard design of yesteryears is a proud accomplishment of traditional Indian architecture that allows for the perfect balance of wind and energy. This helps Svasa Homes achieve a level of vaastu compliance that’s challenging for other luxury homes to attain.
Another speciality of courtyard design is that while its front and central parts facilitate social and community interactions, its peripheral parts contain family rooms for more privacy. What’s amazing is that a concept so ancient, way before the dawn of social media and social renaissance, brought balance between social and personal aspects by its sheer design. At Svasa Homes, spaces dedicated for community interactions are placed in the front while the gym, play areas, and yoga studios meant exclusively for residents are located along the inner peripheries.
Heritage Art, Mythological Decor, Ancient Brass Lamps and More
The two towers of Svasa Homes, Praana and Dhyana, coined after the Vedic words for physical and mental energies (two fundamental aspects of existence) greet you with medieval lamps, artwork, and spaces that invoke a multisensory experience of the rarest kind. Every space of this luxury home is named after terms and concepts from Indian yogic tradition. Be it Asana (the gym) or Karya (the business lounge), Vimaana (the infinity rooftop pool) or Bodhi (the library), every nomenclature takes you back in time.
What meets the eye (and all the other senses) next is the Commonhouse – a first-of-its-kind 40,000 square feet luxury clubhouse designed keeping in mind what a family needs during social interactions. This massive leisure space is inspired by the Tridevi concept – the confluence and celebration of Lakshmi, Saraswati, and Parvati, the three most important goddesses of the Indian pantheon. But the pinnacle (quite literally so!) of this mythical experience awaits in the corridors of the two towers, the ceilings of which hold mythology-inspired murals that demand awe. The first mural depicts Samudra Manthan, or the ‘churning of the ocean’ – a great mythological event from the Puranas. The second mural depicts different goddesses in several manifestations. Created by artists from Kerala, these murals define the true depth of this luxury home’s vision.
Although infused with the highest luxuries such as rooftop infinity pool and business lounges, Svasa Homes has gone all the way in interpreting Indian goddesses, their symbology, elements, and stories to create a residential project that exemplifies Indian luxury. Be it the mythical vehicles of the goddesses or several elements of their form, going to the extent of deconstructing what each element metaphorically signifies has been the theme for the interiors of Svasa Homes.
Several priceless installations spread throughout the premises stops one in their tracks. The Navadurga and Parvati artworks indulgently made of brass and wood welcome you in the Dhyana tower with several other artworks depicting Parvati in elements of her motherhood. Luxurious touches of space, design and form come together in a sensorial symphony.
The Bodhi library, fully inspired by Goddess Saraswati, welcome you with a giant veena (Her favourite musical instrument) among other iconographies, conches, inkpots (depicting Her knowledge and erudition), marbles and colour palettes that portray Her divine personality.
Living in Close Proximity with Heritage
South Indian heritage has been a central trait of Svasa’s design. The South Indian design aesthetics, ratios, and proportions have been at the helm of beauty, creativity, and innovation. But over the past decades, no luxury home project has celebrated South Indian sensibilities enough. Great art has emerged from the southern dynasties of the past. Chola and Vijayanagara empires, among others, have left an indelible impression in the work of traditional and contemporary artists.
For a lot of those who have grown up in southern India, a home with South Indian-inspired spaces immediately creates a comfort zone. Among many artefacts at Svasa Homes, the three lamps dedicated to the three goddesses (Lakshmi, Sarasvati and Parvati) stand out. While Goddess Lakshmi’s lamp is made of brass, Goddess Sarasvati’s is made of white marbles, and Goddess Parvati’s is made of wood (signifying her earthy nature). Every material used in the making of these exquisite lamps manifests the qualities of the individual goddess in a sublime manner.
The experience at Svasa Homes is so uniquely South Indian, it engages multiple senses simultaneously to create an overwhelming experience. Even the fragrances that waft through the corridors of this luxury home smell of the typical South Indian jasmine and champaka. The Svasa fragrance is a special creation to bring alive South Indian heritage within the spaces of this luxury home. While the use of rich silks in upholstery is designed for the sense of touch.
Sattva Community Lounge
A Lounge Crafted with Bespoke South Indian Heritage
The Sattva lounge, inspired by Asthalakshmi (eight different manifestations of Goddess Lakshmi) is one of the largest community spaces at Svasa Homes in which each seating arrangement has been designed to facilitate interaction between Indian families – a culture that lives on even today. Every feature of Sattva lounge revolves around residents’ interests and their social needs, as for an Indian nothing is more important than family. The lounges at Svasa are also designed for three consecutive generations in mind that facilitate the three generations to interact with each other. This is also an integral part of the Indian culture where many generations of the family coexist together.
The lounges include seating clusters where four to five families can sit together at the same time. There are smaller clusters too where two families can spend quality time. Individual seaters face outward, following an intuitive design logic that someone sitting alone would prefer to face the outer landscape instead of the centre of the room. Sattva lounge is one of the best-designed community spaces for the right amount of engagement within a community.
The heritage theme in Svasa Homes trickles down to every detail. Even the handcrafted cushions in Sattva lounge, custom-made exclusively for Svasa Homes residents, reflect heights of Indian heritage. No other luxury home has ever conceptualized something of this magnitude. These lavish cushions, hand-embroidered using zardozi technique, depict various South Indian themes such as lotus gardens, Mysore palace, Hoysala era, Chettinad homes, and Athangudi tiles. Materials of the finest quality such as raw silks, Kanjeevaram silks, and Banarasi brocades have gone into the making of these classy cushions. Svasa Homes brings together several south Indian influences under one roof.
And why must children not be part of this cultural epiphany? Most Svasa residents have lived abroad for years. To rekindle their sense of heritage and enable their children to experience Indian heritage firsthand and learn from it, Svasa Homes has incorporated elements of heritage even in children’s areas. The Krida play lounge features traditional South Indian Channapatna toys. Popular games like snakes and ladders and chess infused with Channapatna designs act as a sharp contrast to the toys kids are exposed to nowadays. Krida also features other traditional South Indian games like Ali Guli Mane – an intriguing strategy board game that originated in ancient Karnataka.
For adults, Svasa Homes has designed community and recreational spaces that inspire awe.The chairs in Svasa’s lounges are replicas of old South Indian ebody furniture design featuring double-weaved cane. The space also includes easy chairs that are still found in old south Indian homes of Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu. Most of these chairs have low seating – a design theme borrowed from the Indian tradition of sitting on the floor, closer to the ground.
The Asana studio, or the gym, is a fitness space inspired by Shiva and Parvati and their synergy i.e. the balance of consciousness and energy. This space also features an antique tea grinder as an installation. Asana studio, catering to the health aspects in the Wheel of Life, displays illustrations depicting the seven chakras of the human body. Illustrations that show different yogic postures and their connection with each chakra are also spotted here.
Various other mythological artefacts sourced from several places in the subcontinent embellish the community spaces in Svasa Homes. Garuda lamps, art pieces, and bronze statuettes contribute to Svasa’s Indian heritage theme. A grand statue of Mayura – a mythical peacock depicted as killing a snake, symbolizing the cycle of time – has been sourced from Srilanka to add to Svasa’s aesthetic majesty.
No residential community has celebrated Indian heritage in such intricate ways. Svasa Homes is not only a residential community, it’s a place where heritage comes alive in more ways than one. It’s an environment where one grows proud of one’s roots and appreciates one’s own culture. Svasa Homes is much more than a luxury home.