By Shaheena Javeri Mistry
Photography: Manoj Masand; courtesy the architects
Khosla Associates design narratives in the skies with the currently trending plush roof-top bar and lounge atop the World Trade Centre building in Bangalore…
Focussed on enjoying the city’s skyline, the linear 10,000 sq.ft. has been cleverly demarcated into four easily merge-able (when desired) zones that stand out for their USP and functionality. One has a choice of foot-tapping DJ and mixologist beats to the dance floor; enclosed quiet party or membership area; ethereal white open-to-sky lounging that gets to witness the most spectacular sunset views and a 20 ft long curvilinear bar with its fascia clad in plush padded velvet, and ceiling designed as three bays sporting a customized ceiling-art installation.
Both, private as well as open-to-sky lounging spaces are characterized by simple, uncluttered geometry, lightness in design, fluidity and dramatic ‘concept walls’. Tied together by a common entrance foyer that partially doubles up as a retail space, the ambience is youthful with the onus on warmth and style.
The material palette leans heavily on textures: carpeting, wooden flooring, velvet padding, glass, wire-mesh, upholstery, and of course the concept walls of timber and greenery. Detailing and story-telling are Khosla Associates’ strength and are observed via pockets of intrigue – the ceiling-art installation has a multitude of suspended translucent fiberglass rocks resembling tiny asteroids in an undulating pattern, bathed in a gentle glow of light; the vertically landscaped ‘green wall’ that abuts a curvilinear water body in one of the open-to-sky lounges; or the striking, fluid magenta-and-purple-light-washed, sculpted resin wall that flows into the entrance of 'High Mix' – the high energy enclosed bar, and is juxtaposed with warm contrasting walls of vertical slatted timber.
Another signature of the architects – pre- programmed colour changing LEDs introduces a distinctive aesthetic, washing certain accent surfaces in hues of brilliant colour. The changing lights resemble the aurora borealis - brilliant colour constellations of the night sky.
At its height of 420 ft., the entire area is enveloped in structural glass specified to withstand the high wind loads, and acoustical treatment to buffer the sound from the outer zones. The pulsating yet harmonious feel seems to strike a balance between earth and sky; real and ethereal.