The Axial House by VM Architects

Fact file
Location: Kerala
Size: 830 sq m
Principal Architect: Vinay Mohan
Photographs by Running Studios


The Axial House by VM Architects is an understated residence that showcases the integration of nature with the client’s family-centric lifestyle. The façade, with its clean, linear forms, is a homage to the simplicity equated with modernism, while the spatial composition sees rooms arranged along a central axis or passageway. The highlight of the project is a pool lounge adorned with temple lamps, beautiful truss work, and a lush vertical garden. The client, a practising physician with a wife, two kids, and elderly parents, desired a soothing residence with simple planning and uninterrupted family spaces. He was also keen on bringing nature into the interior spaces and integrating it with their lifestyle. Innovative design solutions that would reduce heat retention and maximise air circulation were the last of his mandates.

Keeping the aforementioned points in mind, the Axial House, located amidst a bustling residential area, stands out from its surroundings through its highly contemporary architecture and meticulous landscaping. The façade showcases a certain simplicity equated with modernism through a combination of clean horizontal and vertical lines. The narrow rectangular plot has been fashioned via an axial planning concept (from which it derives its name), wherein all the spaces are arranged along a central axis, which also serves as a passage and visual linkage.

All the rooms are designed to open onto views of the landscaped courts, thereby creating a refreshing atmosphere throughout the home. The pool area has been well conceived, with temple lamps and a lush vertical garden. The design of the truss work adds great sectional value to this space. Louvres along the side wall ensure continuous air circulation. Perforated clay bricks for the walls and a clay-tiled roof are a material palette that reduces the effect of external heat and helps create intricate light and shadow patterns that enliven the interior court spaces. With its cantilevered seating arrangement, the guest bedroom also features a view of this beautiful section.