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A holiday home in Mumbai, hidden in the clouds

  • Vacation Home
Aug 14, 2023
Subtle living room ideas for your home - Beautiful Homes

When couple from north India chose Mumbai as their holiday home, designer Kumpal Vaid designed it as a soothing cocoon for them to retreat to

Cradled high above the bustling streets of Mumbai lies a contemporary oasis on the 73rd floor of a towering skyscraper designed by interior designer Kumpal Vaid. Surrounded by infinite views of the Arabian Sea, this cocoon-like apartment was skilfully transformed from a blank bare-shell canvas into a stylish yet soothing retreat in the midst of the Maximum City. The homeowners, a sexagenarian couple from North India who are both corporate professionals, surprisingly bought this apartment as a holiday home in the bustling financial capital. They enlisted Vaid, founder of the Mumbai-based studio Purple Backyard, after falling in love with her signature style for pairing natural materials with biophilic elements when they stumbled upon a house designed by her on Beautiful Homes. The subtle biophilic prints and fresh openness across every room immediately caught their eye, and they knew she was the perfect designer to bring their vision of a peaceful sanctuary away from the city’s hustle and bustle to life.


While the man of the house loved poetry and theatre, his wife was drawn to a vivid hue of emerald green, which she wanted to echo across this four-bedroom home spread across 2,200 square feet. “They would regularly visit Mumbai for work and play, were used to living in the best five-star hotels and wanted to make the apartment feel just as luxurious. But they also wanted the warmth and comfort that one feels in their own home,” explains Vaid, while walking us into this urban getaway.

Perched on the 73rd floor of a towering skyscraper in Mumbai, a 2200 sq ft contemporary home designed by Kumpal Vaid of Purple Backyard Studio awaits overlooking the Arabian Sea.

Beautiful Homes (BH): What was your vision for this space when you first saw it?

Kumpal Vaid (KV): I wanted the home to feel as open and ventilated with a sense of flow to make it easy to navigate. Each space had to feel intuitive and functional to enhance the owners’ daily habits, while also carving out intimate corners for relaxation. I wanted each space to feel meditative, swathed in luxury while also concentrating on a sense of wellness. 

Living room ideas for your home - Beautiful Homes

A pair of bean-form sofas face each other to create a conversational layout atop a vibrant rug from Loops by Latika. The coffee table adds to the mellow mood, a faux fireplace with a ceiling-length mirror reflects the volume of the space.

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A ‘Sublime’ wall light and ‘Shantranj’ accent table by PB Home in a corner of the living room flank a series of arches that lead the way to the bedrooms.

BH: What was the process of turning this raw space into a sanctuary-like cocoon?

KV: Our starting point for designing this home was definitely working with the wife’s favourite colour—emerald green—and also finding ways to not overcrowd any room. We didn’t want to end up with an overbearing house that was fighting with the view. We also wanted to create a layout that promoted an intuitive flow through the apartment. At our studio, we’ve always loved the idea of imperfection—so, while we wanted the home to flow organically, we didn’t want to see any rigid, structured symmetry anywhere. There was also a sense of tranquillity and balance that we were trying to achieve. Layering textures in similar tones was the key to making the home feel calm, which we paired with natural materials like rattan, wood and pure Indian stones.

BH: There's an interplay of soothing tones, materials and textures here used in unique and intricate ways. Tell us more about this.

KV: That’s become a part of our design DNA at Purple Backyard—it’s our signature. We are big on overplaying materiality and textures, and sometimes we even like to drench an entire home in one single tone to highlight a statement piece. We never want to see parts of the décor screaming for attention; it’s better when they come together to create balance. While we’ve used a striking hue of emerald in different elements across the house—such as the semi-precious green aventurine inlay sprinkled across the floor or the duo of upholstered armchairs in deep green and white—it still blends in like a symphony with the other soothing tones around it. And never takes away from the stunning view.

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The bespoke dining table with a white marble top from Banswara, Rajasthan is paired with chairs that have been upholstered in houndstooth and jungle-theme patterns, classic, black-stained wood and brushed brass accented legs.

BH: You have a penchant for specifically using unusual Indian stones…

KV: This goes back to my personal journey of trying to write about my ancestral haveli in Rajasthan. While researching on it, I learnt more about the city of Makrana which is known for its iconic marble that built the Taj Mahal; and discovered other unique Indian stones, too. It made me wonder—why do modern Indian homes always want to use Italian stones instead of celebrating our own materials which are more beautiful and age better in our climate? It led me to marrying something that’s authentically Indian with a modern aesthetic. Homes are an emotion, and a special space where we can be ourselves. What could be more authentic in an Indian home than classic Indian stones?

BH: How did you make the most of the gorgeous view outside?

KV: The living room was designed to frame the view as a focal point. When you sit on any of the couches here, it’s similar to sitting in the mountains. The surroundings melt away and you’ll feel like you’re taken into the view in front of you.

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Upping the playful quotient in the living room, a duo of upholstered armchairs in a deep green and white pattern bring in the hints of the overarching hero colour of the house.

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The guest bedroom floor displays a dense and swirling hatch-like pattern, offsetting the solid shades of neutrals across the room.

BH: There’s also a secret hidden design detail in this home...

KV: Yes! The totem sculpture designed by Purple Backyard is an objet d’art beside the fireplace that spells the word ‘joy’ in Morse code. It quietly celebrates the couple’s personality and way of living.


BH: What was the biggest challenge while designing this home, and how did you overcome it?

KV: Probably the height of the building, which makes it sway a bit with torrential winds leaving the walls susceptible to cracks and weathering. Also, since the apartment is on the 73rd floor, clouds and mist gently roll in in the monsoon, which is so dreamy, but also brings in a lot of moisture with it. But we chose our material palette to complement this so everything would patina beautifully over time.

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The wainscoting in the study has a raw ombre finish with shades of grey and forest green, while the storage cupboard front has a Chinoiserie-patterned wallpaper.

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The galley-style kitchen crafted by Ernestomeda carries forward the overarching aesthetic of the living room. Deep green floor visually elongates the petite kitchen’s expanse, and a speckled Quantra quartz stone melds the countertops and dado.

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The master bedroom displays a palette of taupe and ivory highlighted by layers of emerald green. An organic-form silhouette defines the colossal headboard upholstered in beige and white gingham.

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Beside the bed in the master bedroom, two emerald armchairs create a conversation space atop a plush abstract rug.

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Ornate black-and-white patterned tiles frame the corners of the vanity and highlight the bathroom floor. Weighing over 150 kilograms, the monolithic Indian panda stone basin seemingly appears to be jointless!

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Reminiscent of the charm of regal Turkish hammams, the wife’s bathroom is resplendent in shades of taupe, rust red and white, and artisanal tiles with intricate motif work that take centre stage—reimagining the artistry of a finely detailed Pashmina.

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Drenched in earthy tones, the guest bathroom is engulfed in a matrix of hand-painted, textured subway tiles that contrast crisply against a gritty, black Beslana stone basin.

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