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Xandari Harbour
Fort Kochi, Kerala
Kochi, the hub of the once-thriving spice trade, which connected Kerala with the rest of the world, is filled with alleys and by-lanes flush with the scents of spices. However, today, most of these urban precincts, with their innumerable godowns have deteriorated and have gone into disuse becoming a testament to the vagaries of time.

It is in this unique context that Xandari Harbour, a boutique property, is located. An existing set of buildings including an abandoned warehouse overlooking the harbour was taken up and adaptively reused. A conscious decision was taken to retain as much of the old warehouse as possible, keeping the interventions to a bare minimum.

The restoration of these structures was done sensitively to respect the historical context, while a contemporary architectural vocabulary was evolved through the innovative use of materials and simple clean lines.

The existing godown was converted into a restaurant with a beautiful double-height volume opening out to the waterfront. The space articulates a contemporary design aesthetic while accentuating the charm of the old structure. The existing structure was reinforced to take up the additional load and a steel and glass structure was added to create a mezzanine floor that introduced an interesting juxtaposition of volumes.

The rooms are an expression of the contemporary regional aesthetic, with an interesting mix of handmade floor tiles, polished concrete flooring, oxide finishes, saw cut wood, cement board doors and beaten brass. Innovatively detailed furniture, bespoke accessories and thoughtfully handpicked fabrics accentuate the sense of refined luxury.

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