The Gateway resort – Gateway to heaven


The Gateway Resort Damdama Lake Gurgaon, India’s first Gateway branded resort, is aptly designed keeping the urban nomad in mind, the nature resort aims at providing a destination away from the city, within the natural setting of a nearby lake and the surrounding Aravali range of mountains.

The resort is designed as a weekend retreat and reflective of the natural atmosphere it is located in. The design is eco-friendly. The existing site, an erstwhile botanical garden, was densely planted with large trees and shrubs. The ‘horticulture survey’ of the land documented 1,790 full-grown trees of varying heights and girths. The first design decision was to retain the full-grown trees and evolve an architectural, interior and landscape design around these.

The resort recreates a feel of a ‘walk in a garden’. The guest is made
to wander through the resort alternately moving between interior and exterior spaces, thus, always maintaining a connection with the landscaped outdoors. The interior spaces are separated from the outdoor courtyards (with existing trees) by large sheets of glass.

The main block with all the public areas is organized in the form of a linear block. Courtyards with existing trees puncture this building slab. These courtyards are enclosed in clear-frameless glass to get an uninterrupted inside-outside connection.

The rooms are organized in fragmented ‘Villas’, four rooms to a Villa. These have been scattered in apparent random pattern located within the interstitial spaces between the trees and other thick plantation.Strong, nature-inspired elements are used within the interior spaces to celebrate nature. Thus, a large suspended light installation in the 9-meter high reception cuboid is symbolic of a banyan tree. The restaurants are subdivided by a doubly curved partition inspired by the geometry of the snail and profile of tree branches covering a pathway resulting in a multi dimensional element. Water reflections and ripples
inspire the pre-function lobby ceiling and banquet carpets respectively.

The materials used are in their raw, natural and ‘unprocessed’ form. Raw, quarried Jodhpur stone is used for exterior finishing.

Landscape walls are made with local Delhi quartzite random rubble stone masonry. Various sandstones and lime-stones are used for flooring and wall cladding throughout the resort with their natural
textures intact. The structural steel is exposed inside and outside within the building and forms an important part of the design vocabulary. Large sheets of frameless clear glass are used to enclose the interior spaces providing invisible walls.

Scrap metal sculptures, waste
material collages and craft panels from all parts of India were used to reinforce the
nature inspired theme of the resort. The artworks were carefully conceptualized
and commissioned especially for the resort at the beginning of the construction

Larger than life scrap metal
sculptures are placed throughout the landscape, reminiscent of the village life
that existed here before the resort came into being. Buffaloes, Cows, Goats,
Cowherds, Pelicans, soaring birds and insects are some of the natural fauna
recreated in their natural formation.’ Found material’ collages are used on
walls in the public spaces reflective of the eco-friendly theme of the resort.
Large appliqué panels are hand crafted by women in rural India, which
are suspended in the reception lobby depicting nature in its myriad colors and

Four painted-craft forms namely Kalamkari, Gond, Mata-ni-Pacheri and Phad are used as artworks in the rooms.
All of these are hand painted on fabric using either mineral and stone colours
or vegetable dyes.

The signage has Warli inspired graphics hand carved on
rough stone obelisks.

Step in and become one with
nature at The Gateway Resort Damdama Lake Gurgaon.

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