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A cradle on the hill’s crest

A cradle on the hill’s crest

Tucked within a small hill, a traditional-looking home rests on its crest. But on the inside lies a delightful interior world designed by Indian design studio Temple Town.

In Thrissur, India, design studio Temple Town is a connoisseur of bespoke services, from furniture to interior designs. The creative director and founder, Meera Pyarelal, returns to one of her original projects to elevate the interiors for the client’s next generation.

“This project is very special to me as I had actually done up the interiors of this home 17 years ago, and now the client has asked me to do it up again for his daughter’s wedding,” says Pyarelal.

The brief indeed was curious; to create a zen, soothing sanctuary to accommodate the client’s family and their intense schedule of travelling. In response, the home has become a cradle of tranquillity, designed with an artistic flair that plays with its simple tones.

“The client’s wish was to have a clean and contemporary home but with a monochromatic colour scheme. So we used a very restrained palette of beige, browns, greys and greens because we didn’t want to distract from the natural beauty of the surroundings.”

Inside, the few key shades of the home pay tribute to the natural beauty surrounding the house, and it’s hard not to appreciate the influence of the landscape. Its palette is reminiscent of earthy tones. The greys, browns and beiges fluctuate throughout the home, with dashes of green tying the space together.

Even the entry speaks to its connections to the surrounding landscape. The foyer, defined by clean lines, frames the courtyard and teases the inspirations of global influences and the minimalist style; a style that allows a collection of Indian artwork to shine.

“I love combining everything Indian with more modern European styles, so in the living room, we used a lot of mid-century modern furniture, and we combined it with beautiful Indian tapestries, antiques and artworks,” says Pyarelal.

Temple Town’s clever imagination allows the design to speak of the client’s travels yet complements the simple interior with charming furniture and accessories. Each of the three bedrooms’ restrained palette of wooden flooring and clean white walls is offset with these alluring accessories. 

Mid-century yet modern furniture fabricates the home’s spaces in stunning form. For example, in the dining room, an Italian marble table rests against a white shaker wall panelling that exudes tranquillity ­– the texture of the table’s marble adds a tactile element to Pyarelal’s pared-back scheme. 

“The dining room was my favourite,” adds Pyarelal. “We customised a five-foot-long iron pendant for the chandelier. The marble dining table was set with a collection of mismatched white dinnerware. The moulding work on one wall and the salon-style doors with mirrors lead to the kitchen, which gives the room a lovely atmospheric glow.”

To capture the metaphorical revolving door of the client’s lifestyle, the home’s very theme is interconnectivity. Inside and out blurs, with the home both cradling nature yet embracing biophilic touches. Connecting all the rooms, the internal courtyard builds a definition of the home’s space, all while gifting every corner a sight of enchanting views.

Surmising Hill Crest in its entirety, Pyaarelal says, “Our aim was to create a modern and fresh feel around the old soul of the home. At times, life can get hectic with a lot of coming and going. But this house remains a sanctuary for the people living in it, as it’s always light, airy and welcoming.”

Project Details

Architecture and Interiors – Temple Town
Photography – Justin Sebastian Photography


Caelan Kaluder is the editorial assistant of both Habitus and Indesign. As a recent graduate of ANU, he fell headfirst into the world of the design curious. He has directed various plays and held a residency in Canberra Youth Theatre. He has also worked as a freelance writer and has a keen eye for finding the latest in the world of architecture and design - with a soft spot for all things creative in the workplace and at home.