Villa Vernacular – Kerala

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Our perception of leisure travel is changing in many ways due to many reasons lately. A trend shift where people now avoid crowded destinations against more peaceful solitude like places is not a surprise. Call it a pandemic risk or general change in mindset natural getaways and mostly countryside are gaining popularity world over. But the real game-changer in this shift is almost negligible commute for most office going population and this will continue with coming generations.

While usual hustle was to squeeze in a holiday at a weekend now working from anywhere has opened a possibility to live within a vacation Instead of short What does this mean for the leisure industry? What possibilities does this liberated work-home relationship hold for dense cities that require no commute?


The internet solves a lot of problems for the world, especially the one that pertains with distance. This unlocks the idea that we can live in less crowed places with rural & scenic qualities. We can choose where our window faces, how big the house can be, what all it needs, more like a farmhouse. Although farmhouses are short term leisure properties, this new typology can be of having long term stays for almost 50% of the year. But with new possibilities, it brings new challenges to the rural. The idea of the city like a budget in rural areas brings a lot of decision-making powers, to architects and the clients they build for.

The development control rules are lenient and possibilities are endless. This is liberating and alarming in all senses if we come to analyze it. The factor of rural fabric that can be hampered by such city as construction styles is the biggest identity threat to the rapid rural expansion of the city. How can we find a balance?


Villa Vernacular is a design challenge focussed on building a motion towards responsible leisure properties across the world. It is an idea that looks towards equalizing the balance between rural identities and urban demands. The ability to pay does give access to every construction technology at hand, but the challenge wants to normalize the fact that living in rural should be a healthy exchange instead of closed compound construction and living like the city.

The design brief is to develop a villa for a family of 4, who have switched to work from home completely and looks to live in the countryside for half the year. The client profile can be defined by the participants followed by which design process can begin considering a vernacular approach for the entire building scheme.


THE CLIENT: Build a detailed client profile that covers description, choices, hobbies and backgrounds.
PLACE: Understand the context, the place, cultures, values, community from in relevant dimensions you wish to weave the design in.
SPACES: Identity and craft spaces for the client and your understanding of the place.
KNIT: Develop the spaces and construction in relevance to context the building belongs in.