Homes and gardens

Bling in the bath

As spa-like bathrooms find fans, Keha Casa helps us make the luxe choice with brands like SICIS and Antoniolupi

For Hameed Khan, co-founder of luxury bath store Keha Casa, the main mandate for the three-month-old flagship store in Bengaluru’s Kensington Road was to give visitors a sight that would freeze them in their tracks. He and co-founder Kekin Shah have succeeded in doing just that. Spread across three floors, the 8,000 sq ft space is connected by a glass staircase designed by Carlo Santambrogio, accentuated with lights by Davide Groppi — that look like a fireworks display frozen in time — hanging from a mirrored ceiling designed by SICIS, the famed Italian mosaic brand (where students take up to five years to perfect their craft). With an entire wall envisioned by Italian designer Giovanni Barbieri — made up of a combination of backlit stones and Venetian Murano glass — the store is the last word in opulence.

“Art, architecture and design are our main objectives, and the point was to create an international outlook — with every material and shape from renowned brands abroad,” Khan says. More than showcasing products, the store, which draws influences from European museums, aims to appeal to the aesthetics of architects, designers and clients.

Butterfly effect

The products on display — like floor designs by Patricia Urquiola, and a range of Antoniolupi and Devon&Devon bathtubs — are each part of their own little ecosystems, supported by fireplaces and artworks. Elaborating on the architecture perspective, Chennai-based Vikram Phadke, who lent his expertise to the retail space (with finishing touches by interior designer Vinita Chaitanya), says that creating a logical flow was the biggest challenge. “Indian consumers tend to be spoilt; the usual sensibility is ‘a little bit of every brand in every bathroom’. We wanted to provide a diverse mix, but also showcase enough that they don’t get overwhelmed,” he explains. One of our favourite spaces is the visual tapestry formed by SICIS’ many-layered designs, with butterflies flitting across walls and bathtubs sporting colourful Mediterranean hues.

Chaitanya says
  • Let there be light: Mood lighting is big in the bath space, as they add an understated element of luxe
  • By the hand: From mosaic to marble, design and detail are paramount. And nothing
  • assures it like hand-crafting
  • Finish right: Copper and gold
  • are all-time favourites, with
  • rose gold still on trend. Matte
  • finishes in black and nickel are eye-catchers, too

Bold outlook

With so much on offer, we check in with Chaitanya to find out what she incorporates into her designs. Explaining that clients are open to spending on bathrooms with spa-like environments, she picks the faucets by THG, “designed by Baccarat and Lalique, and that bring together a level of craftsmanship not seen in India” as one of her favourites. “For my classical moods, I love using Devon&Devon, who have a lovely English range. Bathtubs are not pushed to a corner any more, they are the centrepieces, like a sculpture. With a beautiful mosaic bathtub by SICIS, you could have an all-black space and it would still be the focal point,” she adds.

Devon&Devon’s bathtubs start at ₹3 lakh (for the Kensington with polished aluminium feet) and go up to ₹14 lakh for the President Bathtub. Details: 48536043

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Printable version | Feb 20, 2020 1:00:40 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/life-and-style/homes-and-gardens/bling-in-the-bath/article19472580.ece

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