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Shobhan Kothari

Mumbai, Maharashtra, India-400063 |Practicing since: Sept. 1, 2002

W Lounge, Hospitality-Bar & Pub

Project Status: Completed

White nights If you thought that light is only a visual aid, visit White in Phoenix Mills a lounge designed by Shobhan Kothari and Anand Menon. Here you will experience what it feels to have light invade all your senses. We dont seem to have the time for metaphors and deeper meanings, that is if there are any at all. Exactly what you cant help but feel when you enter the vertical gap in a corrugated white wall of asbestos with nothing but deliberately unpretentious lettering WHITE embossed on it. The walls, the ceiling, the roof that tapers towards the entrance, the ducting, and the faux leather that covers the furniture are all white. This bright lounge is a welcome break from the rather dark ambiences of its contemporaries, and makes you wonder whether white is a theme based on colour or light. Everything that revolves around the theme white mirror-clad centre tables, the ceiling-to-ceiling mirror, the metallic DUCO paint that covers all surfaces, the 4-feet band of glass that runs along the edge of the asbestos and allows natural light to pour in the day seems to be partial to the colours first property, that of containing all seven colours of light. An 80-ft wall made of cement sheets covered with asbestos and painted white anchors the place, and was the dominant design element, adds Anand Menon. LED lights illuminate the wall from the top and the bottom. The lights keep changing from a red to a blue to a green. These are set on a programme with 34 light combinations the controls of which are given to the DJ. Maybe you begin the evening with a cool blue and graduate to a combination of reds as the evening progresses, explains Menon. The concept behind white was to challenge the conventional norms of a lounge bar. The space seems like a loft. The original mill ceilings have been retained to enhance the loft-like look, and painted white. The service sections of Veggie World (that previously occupied this space) were moved to another level to fully utilise the height, and the sense of space it affords, of the ceiling. The entrance, originally in the middle of the space, was moved to one end to create the current physical sense of space [A good 80-feet space dominated by the white asbestos wall]. Iron bars enclosed in acrylic boxes provide a place to rest your drink, and serve as something you can lean on. The space narrows down towards the centre where a mirrored segment acts as a division between an exhaustive bar and a lounge space. The ceiling-to-ceiling mirror also creates an illusion of space and light it reflects snapshots of the space surrounding it. Depending on where you are standing, you can see other people in the lounge a juxtaposition of images creates an illusion. The floor comprises matte white vitrified tiles. The bar stools are made in MS powder-coated frames. Back-painted white glass covers the tables. The palette of raw materials asbestos, acrylic, iron, glass, and mirror has been used by retaining their inherent characters. The sense of space is maintained in the 22-feet bar that comprises a back-painted glass skirt and an overhead fringe of acrylic fins well-placed LEDs play with your visual senses. All the elements of colour and light have been customised to accentuate the sense of industrial space. Two bathrooms illuminated with white light, cloaked by alucobond sheets, have replaced the previous unisex bathroom and guise the small size of their dimensions rather effectively. A few minor lighting modifications spruced up the existing 500-feet kitchen. When in the lounge, you cannot help but feel that LEDs play the role of a magical master creating an ethereal surrounding. They wink at you from beneath the bar counter and the acrylic boxes with iron bars while they move flow effortlessly, flirtingly, towards, and over, the white asbestos wall. The experience at the lounge is varied. You can book a table in the premium section, mingle in the high-energy area near the bar or get yourself a seat to chill in the lounge section. This attempt at multiple experiences set in 2500 sq feet is aimed at the variety of people who turn up at the lounge. Minimalism is the operating word in the lounge. A distinct subtlety and restraint underline the feel of the place. As white, in the form of a pristine colour or the purest form of light, stands for opulence of a cultured kind. W Lounge is done in Atelier Design N Domain. Partners are-Anand Menon and Shobhan Kothari Completion year : 2006 Area: 4000 sqft Credits for photography-sebastian Zachariah Web site : www.adnd.in.

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Area (in sq.ft)
4,000
Photo credits: Sebastian Zachariah

Photo credits: Sebastian Zachariah

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Photo credits: Sebastian Zachariah

Photo credits: Sebastian Zachariah

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Photo credits: Sebastian Zachariah

Photo credits: Sebastian Zachariah

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Photo credits: Sebastian Zachariah

Photo credits: Sebastian Zachariah

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