By Accommodation Times News Services
At the foothills of the Himalayas, an elegant and thoughtful getaway is taking eco-conscious living to glamorous new heights. Myst, an exclusive gated community, blends contemporary design seamlessly with the unique ecology of the area. The eco-luxury residences, born from a joint venture between Tata Housing and Impacts Projects, are an organic addition to the magnificent Kasauli hills — the result of a blissful blend of luxury and splendor, adding a new dimension to the luxe life. Easily accessible, Myst is located on a high promontory — a hill top with gradient — and is a mere 65 kilometres from Chandigarh, the city of Le Corbusier. Surrounded by the lush indigenous foliage of a pine forest, Myst is a way of life — in harmony with natural beauty that is both pleasurable and sustainable. India’s first residential development, created using biophilic architecture, has been designed by world-renowned names in sustainable architecture — Llewelyn Davies Yeang. Biophilia is a design ethos to create grand living spaces that are invigorating, inspiring, and comforting. Human beings are hard-wired to need a connection with nature and other forms of life. Biophilic design lessens stress and enhances well-being as our minds and bodies gravitate towards certain configurations and natural layouts. With flowing water, green roofs, and airy open living spaces, Myst eliminates stark distinctions between built up structures and natural surroundings. Tucked at the foothills of the Himalayas, next to Kasauli, Myst enjoys salubrious mountain air and mild, lovely summers and cool winters, with occasional snow-fall carpeting the hills in a sheet of white. The local hillside ecology and topography at Myst was studied at length to design a master plan for residential structures that works effortlessly with the surroundings. The meticulous design is sensitive to the ecology of the locality, with its efforts in conservation of top soil and preservation of natural fauna in the form of a biodiversity park. Sustainable drainage is incorporated in the form of bio swales and recharging of groundwater, while rainwater is channeled into soil sinks to help stabilise the soil on slopes and recharging ground water. Movement- sensitive bollard lighting is used so as to avoid disturbing indigenous wildlife and nectaring plants are grown in the premises. Eco-features such as green living roofs, non-intrusive lighting (lighting with significant UV content is avoided), bird habitats, a medicinal plant garden and magical butterfly gardens create a way of life for the residents, which is both delightful and Myst is built around 3 seasonal cascading rivulets that run from the awe-inspiring temple pavillions to the gurgling ponds all over the property. Each expansive dwelling is designed with an open-plan interior, enjoying stunning panoramic views from the glazed windows, opening to projecting balconies and decks. Every living room, dining room and master bedroom will have unbridled views of the forested hills. Bright and airy living spaces boast large balconies and extra- large windows to take in the impressive sights. From the deck, settle in with your binoculars to observe the region’s distinctive flora and fauna, as butterflies flutter around the scented forest. The architecture of each villa uses a hybrid vocabulary of contemporary and rustic materials, endemic to the locality.. Select residences have double-height green walls in the shower area as well as gallery. With a fireplace, Jacuzzi and plunge pool, Myst residences provide every luxury possible, yet are deeply entwined with nature. Available floor plans range from double-level 2 bedroom residences to 5 bedroom multi-level villas. The serene complex has been planned to converge at a centrally located clubhouse that takes inspiration from a mountain village street, conceived with an air of quiet luxury. It features plazas and courtyards flanked by low rise pavillions.