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Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Sorted whites for the dentist

By Neeti Patel
Photography: India Sutra; courtesy the architect
Read Time: 2 mins 
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Mahesh Punjabi Associates turns the tables on the proprietary dental clinic, stripping it off its barrenness, optimizing on both – hygiene and aesthetics!

A recently opened 900 sq. ft. state-of-the-art dental facility in suburban Mumbai welcomes visitors with its simplistic charm and grandeur; its white interior envelope and graphic placards being the only giveaways to its identity.
 
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With a chic reception area and working space for three dentists, in addition to perfunctory areas, the clinic uses modern, automated, sensor-operated equipment. Full-height glass partitions distinguish the spaces and maintain transparency and openness.
 
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Characterised by a predominant use of soothing whites paired with occasional elements of lustrous gold or beiges and neutral greys, the facility is endowed with an altogether relaxing and opulent aura. Central patches of dull gold on the cabin ceilings add to the regal feel as patients are directed to look into the ceiling-mounted digital monitors that display the dental procedures being performed on them.
 
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Avoiding visual clutter, it allows visitors to perceive the volume of the space homogeneously and confer undivided attention to the distinctive furniture pieces and informative boards. Faceted and cantilevered desks, explicitly crafted in white, and finished with mirror add a touch of dynamism. Wood-finished cabinetry used as storage is anointed with soft niches to hold accolades and mementos.
 
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Uniformly diffused yellow light emerging as a continuous strip on the ceiling maintains the subdued ambience of the place as hygiene is integral to the facility via walls that are prudently finished with washable, dust-proof and easy-maintenance ABS plastic – a well-weathering material generally used in A380 aircrafts – that completely negates the need for repainting or other maintenance; white surgical floors complement the palette.


The highlight of the project is its seamlessly flowing ceiling element in the entrance and the fact that all plumbing, electric and electronic provisions for the high-end facility were routed via the flooring. Altogether, the designers effectively demonstrate that ‘less is indeed more’ with emphasis on a modest expression of elements vis-à-vis superficial ornamentation.


Fact File: 
Client: Dr. Mukul Dhabolkar
Project: International Centre for Dental Care
Design Firm: Mahesh Punjabi Associates
Area: 900 sq. ft.
Location: Bandra, Mumbai

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