Sunday, February 7, 2016

Architecture in Kerala - Winding road in Calicut

We have created this beautiful winding road to access one of the mixed use developments done by Stapati, in Calicut, Kerala. The road has been designed taking into account the existing contours of the site, to keep the cutting and filling to a bare minimum. We have also used Geo-grid in place of retaining walls on one side. These are then filled with soil and compacted. Grass is grown on top of these, creating beautiful green slopes.

This project is a good example of Architecture and infrastructure development in Kerala, done in a sensible manner to balance both development as well as environmental concerns.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Timeless Resorts - Stapati, by Sujith.G.S

It is really an honour to present 'Timeless Resorts', a coffee table book on the resort projects done by Stapati, based in Calicut, Kerala. Founded by Ar.Tony Joseph in 1989, Stapati has grow into one of the leading architectural consultancies in the country.

Being part of this wonderful team is a really great experience. So it was an honour when I was asked to  create the content for this coffee table book, which is published by ORO Editions based in San Francisco. It was a great experience for me to visit the various resorts to photoshoot them, to experience the spaces in person. You really get to understand the importance of good design in creating a wonderful hospitality experience, right from the design of spaces to the selection of the right materials to the textures and colour schemes.

The projects are spread across India and Seychelles, but my favourites are the projects in Kerala as they are a good example of how to create good architecture in Kerala, with its unique context. One of my personal favourite is the Spice Harbour in Fort Kochi, which is an adaptive reuse of an old godown. This was done to create a very rustic yet contemporary aesthetic, which was inherently Indian, yet one which exuded an international appeal.

Timeless resorts would be a good addition to both the architect as well as the common man, with the projects captured in some stunning photographs. There are sketches and drawings to show the design  and its evolution, and there is write up about each project, which explains the design and the context it responds to. So go ahead and grab your copy now!!!

Timeless Resorts

Author  - Sujith.G.S
Editor.  - Abraham Tharakan
Design - Sandhya Kurushingal

Monday, September 21, 2015

Fundermax wall cladding panels


Rear-ventilated exterior wall claddings serve to improve the weather protection, the external appearance and the thermal insulation of buildings. The wide colour choice of MAX EXTERIOR and the various installation forms of suspended facades, offer the owner and the planner maximum design possibilities. MAX EXTERIOR can be installed on many conventional metal and wooden sub constructions from the various manufacturers.
MAX EXTERIOR is a high-quality building product, which is used as a large-format, flat panel specially for long-lasting balcony and facade claddings.MAX EXTERIOR panels are duromer high-pressure laminates

(HPL) conforming to EN 438 Type CGF with additional, extremely effective, weather protection. They are produced in lamination presses at great pressure and high temperature from lengths of natural fibre which have been impregnated with synthetic resin. As a result of the described production process - which has no negative effects on the environment - MAX EXTERIOR panels have the following excellent properties:
High weather resistance

 Optimal light-fastness


 Even better solvent resistance

 Impact resistant

 Resistant to adverse environmental influences (acid rain)

 High mechanical strength (no risk of breaking)


 Bending resistant

 Impact proof

 Vandal proof


 Resistant to contamination by animals (urine resistant)

 Easy to clean (e.g. spray graffiti)

 Resistant to water and steam

 Non-corroding and durable


Monday, August 24, 2015

Architecture in Kerala - Fort Kochi Metamorphosis - A Photoessay


Fort Kochi has been evolving constantly, right from the glorious old days of the thriving spice trade to subsequent conquest by various colonial forces. Today, Fort Kochi is witnessing another kind of change - one, that is driven by the increasing tourism potential of the area. The old alleyways and godowns, where one can still feel the lingering essence of the spice trade are giving way to boutique restaurants and resorts. Most of these new spaces are housed in adaptively restored building of old, where modern architectural sensibilities and aesthetics are balanced with the history of the place, with the old building carefully preserved and reused. This photo-essay is an attempt to capture the present state of this evolution. 

Wednesday, August 5, 2015



Kerala has a very strong vernacular tradition in architecture which has guided the evolution of modern architectural practices in the state. This traditional influence is visible in a lot of the works that have emerged from the state over the years. However, there are a few emerging practices that are exploring newer directions, making a lot of exciting architecture.  Read on to find out the best architectural offices for training in Kerala.

Stapati - Calicut & Cochin

Stapati is one of the most professional and creative offices in Kerala. It is a large firm with branches in Calicut, Cochin, Bangalore and Chennai. Training in Stapati is a highly enriching experience where the students are given an opportunity to broaden their overall perspective, which is not restricted to architecture alone. The advantage for students is that they get to interact directly with Ar.Tony Joseph almost on a daily basis as he is highly passionate about imparting knowledge.

Stapati Calicut –
Tel : +91 495 4076000, 2771102

Stapati Cochin
Tel : +91 484 2317409, 2293135

SpaceA.R.T, Calicut

Founded by architects Vinod Cyriac and Anita Choudhuri, the firm is a great place for internship - a balance of good architecture and fun.  Their characteristic style is of exposed brick structures with which they fashion beautiful and earthy spaces. Do check out their works at   before applying.

‘5 reasons to work at SpaceART’, in their own words –

·         We offer unlimited potential for growth
·         SpaceART recognizes individual contribution
·         All employees are empowered with responsibility and authority
·         SpaceART follow international standards and best practices
·         We offer career advancement opportunities across multiple sectors

You can upload your portfolios at -

Contact –
Phone: 0091 – 495 – 2370290

JCJR Partnership– Architect Jayakrishnan & Chitra Nair, Trivandrum

Based in Trivandrum, JCJR partnership is one practice which has matured tremendously over the years and is presently producing some really good works. This husband and wife duo forms a great team and a student can definitely get inspired by the beautiful sketches that Jayakrishnan draws, to document the various places he travels to.

You can send your resume to -
Phone: +91 471 2720323, 2720657

Chandramohan Associates, Trivandrum

Architect Chandramohan is one of the senior practitioners in Kerala and is producing some really good work.

Contact –
Phone: +91 471 2721200, 2310291

Fahed Architects, Cochin

Architect Fahed Abdul Majeed is one of the most exciting young architect exploring new horizons in the built environment of Kerala. Very interesting details, usage of interesting materials and unique design solutions characterize his works.

Phone: 0484 240 9888

Design Combine, Cochin
Yet another place where some really interesting work is happening.
Phone: +91-484-2421731/32/33

BSA Architects, Manjeri

Architect Brijesh Shaijal’s unique practice is a great place to learn about the practical and innovative aspects of the profession


De Earth, Calicut

Architects Vivek PP and Nishan’s works are very interesting for their exploration of various typologies and material qualities

Phone: +91 495 2741782, +91 495 2741622, +91 495 271922
Mobile: +91 9947493333

Lijo.Reny architects, Thrissur

Lijo’s and Reny’s practice is one of the most interesting practices in Kerala, known for their unabashedly contemporary language and immaculate attention to detail.

Phone:  0487 2388633
Mobile: +91 98470 16689, +91 94469 40633


Thursday, July 23, 2015

Preparing an architectural portfolio – Review & Critique by Ar.Sujith.G.S

Presenting all aspiring young architects and student architects with a unique opportunity to get your portfolios reviewed by a practising architect!

 I cannot stress the importance of a good professional portfolio in today's highly competitive architectural field. Be it for getting internships in offices or for landing that first job, your portfolio is your one and only tool!

There are so many people out there that it is important to differentiate yourself, to get that cutting edge. And, from the innumerable portfolios that I receive, it is evident that often most students or young architects are not clear enough on how to prepare a good architectural portfolio. A lot of people think that splashing a lot of graphics and renderings will land you that job opportunity or that coveted internship position. However, a portfolio is much more than that.

So here is a great opportunity to get advice from a practicing architect on preparing a great architectural portfolio, to get useful feedback and review of your portfolio prior to sending it out to various architectural offices. Find out what architect's really look for in any portfolio. Once you sign up and submit your portfolio, you'll get a direct critique of your architectural portfolio and advice on how to improve it by directly interacting with Ar.Sujith.G.S. You'll get an architect’s perspective with suggestions on how to make your portfolio better!

Send in your details to to sign up and get more details!

Ar.Sujith.G.S Profile -

SUJITH.G.S is an Indian born architect who is passionate about design, writing, blogging and architectural photography. He began his professional journey as an architect in Larsen & Toubro where he worked for five years on a wide range of projects. Subsequently, he joined Stapati, where he has been working as a senior architect, handling some of the large-scale projects in the firm. He is a regular contributor to various architectural publications and has been a guest jury member for several architecture schools in India. He shares his perspectives on architecture and design through his blog, Architecture Students Corner.

A Sample page from the booklet 'Preparing an architectural portfolio - Dos and dont's'

WAF announces Festival Theme for 2015

50/50 – looking back, looking forward

This year the WAF seminar and keynote programme is inspired by Singapore's 50th anniversary as an independent country which it is celebrating in 2015. We are taking this opportunity to think globally about how architecture and urbanism have changed during that period, how predictions have been fulfilled or denied, and how we think conditions may change or stay the same over the 50 years to come.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

The Bangalore workshop 2015

There is this very interesting workshop which is going to be held in Bangalore. Here is a brief synopsis as elucidated by Ar.Bijoy Ramachandran - 

'The Vimal Jain Foundation and the Indian Institute of Management Bangalore are organising a 5 day workshop from August 11th to 15th, 2015.

The workshop is being conducted by Richard Leplastrier and Peter Stutchbury, both accomplished teachers, practitioners and Australian Institute of Architects Gold Medal recipients. Both of them have also been involved in the Glenn Murcutt MasterClass ( since its inception in 2000. Dr. B.V. Doshi will join the Workshop on the last two days for the final reviews and public lectures.

For the 2015 workshop, participants will be invited to study the edges of the Indian Institute of Management Bangalore and suggest ways in which to negotiate the chaotic urban environment on the street with the serene quality of the campus. The aim is to attempt a bridge both physically (through architectural and programmatic ideas) and metaphorically between these two contrasting conditions. Though known internationally as a premier academic institution, IIMB is isolated from its immediate context and offers no opportunity for a dialogue. It is the hope that through the workshop one begins to find a way to have the Institute engage with the city and vice versa. This also offers a real opportunity to address the challenges posed by rapid urbanization and commercialism - how these edges are treated will hopefully offer clues for how ‘quality’ and public space could find its way back into our streetscapes.

The workshop is open to students and practitioners.
Application forms and portfolios are due on the 17th of July (email to

Richard is the genuine article - a sage of our time. If not the workshop you must try and come for the lectures on the 16th.'

Monday, July 13, 2015

Preparing an architecture portfolio - Dos and don't's - by Sujith.G.S

 As a practicing architect, I come across a relatively large number of portfolios for internship in our office, as well as those applying for job opportunities. Most of these portfolios are pretty average and poorly crafted, even though the quality of design is pretty good. That either means that a) students do not pay enough attention, or b) students do not have a good idea of how to prepare a good portfolio. It is in this context that I thought Id share some points to help students with their architecture portfolio preparation

A portfolio should reflect the architectural and aesthetic sensibilities of the student. It is a great way of communicating what you believe in, in highlighting your strengths and skills. That being said, an architectural portfolio is a professional document and one must make every effort to keep it as professional as possible, while highlighting your creative side.

Keep your portfolio neat and simple.  I can't stress that enough. Most of the designers appreciate portfolios that are clean, which can clearly communicate your design and creative works. You can always take inspiration from the simple clear design aesthetics of Apple. It was Steve Job's single minded pursuit for perfection which has thrown out all the unnecessary frills and helped evolved some of the most beautiful gadgets.  An architectural portfolio should also be similar. The idea is not to create an overloaded graphical presentation, but one which would highlight your design work and would communicate it in a clear legible manner.

Today there is a plethora of presentation and graphical softwares which can create awe inspiring images. But keep in mind that ultimately it is not the fancy graphics that will have to be the highlight of your architecture portfolio. Graphics are just a tool to convey your mastery of the relevant softwares and also your presentation skill. But always keep in mind that it is always a design portfolio and that design must take precedent.

Please avoid unnecessary personal details and 'cool' personal photographs. If you must add your picture, please keep it relatively straightforward.

Most of the portfolios that I get include ‘photography’ as one of the skill sets. Today, with the plethora of good quality cameras and editing softwares, almost everyone is an amateur or semi-professional photographer. Thus unless you really are passionate about photography and have got some good photographs, it is always best to avoid adding random clicks as your photography work.

As an architect, one is expected to be able to communicate your ideas through sketches and drawings. It is a skill that most of the architects look for in students. That being said, not everyone can effectively communicate through good sketches. If sketching is not your cup of tea, I would advise that you do not forcefully include poor sketches just for the sake of adding it, but highlight other skill sets like graphic abilities. Always try to include as much hand drawn content as possible in your portfolio and while doing so, ensures that the sketches are scanned properly in good resolution (300 dpi always) and that the lines are clear.

Pay attention to your fonts and text. Today, there are plenty of fonts which can be used to create eye catching content in your portfolio. Create a hierarchy of fonts and font sizes to be used in your architectural portfolio and maintain the same throughout.

Be extremely careful in all the content that you include. All the text must be checked for grammatical mistakes. Always, and I mean always, use spell-check on all your content in your portfolio. It is not at all acceptable to have basic spelling mistakes in your portfolio. It would mean that you are not professional enough in your work.

Writing quality content is again another challenge for any architectural student. Add only that text which you feel is absolutely essential. Pay more importance to images. Avoid giving too elaborate write-ups explaining your designs and ideas. Most of the architects are not going to ever read through the whole text. So, keep your writing to the minimum and let your drawings do the talking. And always ensure that only relevant and grammatically correct content is included. If on the other hand you are good at writing, let it come through in minimal sentences which would capture the essence of your design.

Finally, don't be afraid of white spaces! You do not need to crowd your whole layout, cramming tons of stuff in it. Make white spaces work in your favour by their judicious use. However, this has to be handled carefully, as too much white can lead to a blank look. So use your aesthetic sense and decide the optimum amount of content vs white space.

A few examples of interesting portfolios -

This is a  good example of a well crafted portfolio. Most of the points mentioned above are reflected in this one


A sample page from the booklet!

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Charles Correa, rest in peace!

If you can keep your head when all about you 
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you, 
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too; 
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:

If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;
If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breathe a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!’

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!
- 'If' by Rudyard Kipling

Charles Mark Correa, one of India's greatest sons has passed away. Correa was one of the master's of modern post-independence Indian architecture, creating works which exuded a very unique Indian aesthetic, which were unabashedly contemporary, but which were always rooted in their context. 'Critical Regionalism' can best be used to describe his works. Correa has inspired a few generations of Indian architects through his body of work. He was one of the thought leaders who defined the direction of architecture after the turbulent years of the Independence struggle, deriving a uniquely Indian concept of space. He was someone who did away with heavy theoretical and conceptual postulating but someone who explained his designs in simple terms as ideas which ordinary people could directly relate with. His body of work stands testament to the timelessness inherent in his designs. It is indeed a deep loss for our architectural fraternity. 

Rest in peace sir. Your works continue to inspire us and will continue to do so for countless generation of young architects!

Learn more about Charles Correa, India's greatest architect here

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Artwork in Calicut Railway Station

By Sujith.G.S

Came across this beautiful work done by a couple of artists from Sargalaya with the waste / thrown materials form the station, referencing it directly to the 'Swachh Bharat Abhiyan' Feel that it is important that all of us do our part in creating beautiful and clean spaces. It is also very important that we teach our children the common sense not to litter in any place so that cleanliness becomes a way of life