Bari Kothi, a 300-year-old heritage hotel is a restoration project unlike any other. Read on to know how colours can be used in the restoration of heritage buildings.
Colour plays a significant role in highlighting the unique characteristics of historic structures. We often see building elements such as walls, doors, windows, columns, roofs, turrets, domes, staircases and ceilings painted in various colours.
Colours on historic structures create a vivid image in our minds. Take the Red Fort in Delhi, Hawa Mahal in Jaipur or the Kapaleeshwarar Temple in Chennai, for instance. The unique hues and sheer beauty of these heritage structures, reflecting its glorious past, have made them popular landmarks today.
Take a look at Jaipur which is known as the Pink City or Jodhpur, the Blue City. These colours have effectively enhanced the characteristics and image of these cities, which would otherwise be devoid of meaning and cultural leanings without it.
One such fascinating heritage structure is Bari Kothi. Literally translating to the ‘Palace of the Elder,’ Bari Kothi was built in the late 1700s, belonging to Rai Bahadur Budh Singh Dudhoria from the Dudhoria family.
The Dudhorias decided to convert it into a luxury boutique heritage hotel with the help of an acclaimed and passionate Canadian architect and restorator, calling it “The Project Priceless.”
Greek, Roman and French architecture have influenced the design of this heritage site with uniquely carved Burma teak pillars, striking stained glass windows and hand-painted tiles, showcasing a truly beautiful mélange of their distinctive, global features.
There are 15 heritage suites, each themed as per the precious stone colours such as Ruby, Emerald and Diamond. The central courtyard is where the cultural performances are held to enthral the guests.
Restoring the legacy of Bari Kothi
Colour is an integral component in building conservation. The use of colour in heritage structures is not just about surface treatments but also architectural expression.
Inappropriate paint schemes can substantially alter the character of buildings and streets for the worse. This is why it is the moral responsibility of every architect and restorator to be sensitive and use appropriate historic colours that reveal and emphasise the building’s original style and appearance.
The restoration task of Bari Kothi was no cakewalk. It was herculean in nature and challenges were aplenty.
Originally built with calcium mix and thin bricks, most of the structure was decayed owing to termites and moisture. Proper support had to be given to the falling roofs and the walls using steel. In some cases, even the roof had to be completely redone so that the structure could live another 100 years. Design motifs such as murals had to be patiently restored.
Berger Paints India places a great deal of emphasis on treating such priceless heritage sites with respect. We have the right knowledge, tools and products like wall paint to add colour and life to such architectural structures.
We also have a wide range of exterior paints for walls, to add aesthetic appeal and to protect it from harsh weather, come rain or sun.
Our team handled this project with the utmost sensitivity using good conservation and maintenance practices, making sure that the structure’s past and future remain preserved forever. This project is a success, standing tall as an inspiration to all.
If you take a tour, you will observe that the structure boasts of intricate decoration with a great variety of colours in line with the prosperity of the period.
In conclusion, colour remains an important element in restoration of heritage sites, adding character and interest to the architecture.
By appreciating the qualities of historic structures, we will be able to relate and learn not only about the life of our predecessors but incredible innovations made in the past.
Image credits: Go Nomads