Integrating Culture, Luxury and Immersive Experiences: The Architecture of Vegas Mall
The past two decades have seen a phenomenal rise of cosmopolitanism in urban India. Architecture and city life in metropolitan centres reflect a cultural exchange of western and global ideas in the context of rapid growth and development. Dwarka, a sub-city in southwest Delhi, is a melting pot of cultures and lifestyles, and exemplifies this nature of contemporary Indian cities. Dwarka hosts some of the most dynamic mixed-use buildings, residential developments, clubs, shopping centres and five-star hotels, and enjoys seamless connectivity to other major parts of Delhi due to its 8 metro stations. Vegas Mall, a mixed-use retail complex, inaugurated in 2019, is an ideal addition to this vibrant commercial and recreational neighbourhood.
Designed by Bentel Associates International, and developed by Pratham Group, the project sprawls over an area of 1.3 acres. Situated just 10 km from the Indira Gandhi International Airport, the mall lies abutting the metro corridor of Dwarka, and is in close proximity to two metro stations. Vegas is developed under the ‘Urban Expansion Project’ scheme of the Delhi Development Authority (DDA). The Additional Development Control (ADC) norms set up by the DDA, encourage high intensity mixed-use development along major transportation corridors such as metro lines or urban extension roads. This makes the Vegas Mall a major development in this area, having a significant economic impact on its surrounding landscape. Bentel’s design for the project uses modern building techniques with culturally sensitive planning strategies, responding to the cosmopolitan mood of South Delhi.
Comprising a spacious and contemporary retail centre with global brands, food outlets, entertainment hubs and a 5-star hotel, the architecture of the mall embodies the dynamic energy of a lively and modern public space. Effectively injecting a vital public space within Dwarka’s tightly-woven urban fabric, a lively, open public plaza welcomes visitors. The entry into the mall purposefully segregates pedestrian and vehicular traffic, with drive-in roads on 3 sides, ensuring efficient drop-off points with ramps leading to the basement.
With a contextual relevance to the city and its iconic landmarks, the design of the mall takes inspiration from the lotus, the sacred flower symbolising purity and enlightenment. The abstracted philosophy of the blooming lotus is weaved into different design elements in the form of geometry, shape and concept, and is a common point of reference across the building. Spatially, the building is designed around an expansive central plaza, with different building sections clustered around it; conceptually, each of these sections represent the petals of a fully bloomed lotus, the centre of which becomes a sanctum of human activity. The spaces are masterfully planned transitioning from dynamic retail blocks encouraging a seamless flow of pedestrians into the mall, to a secluded private section comprising hotels and apartments.The zoning is simple, clearly segregated and effective in orienting large groups of people amid the mall’s multi-functional activities. Diverse local and international brands occupy the retail space on the first floor, whereas a food court on the second floor brings together an eclectic variety of cuisines and international food outlets. An entertainment hub with a multi-screen cinema occupies the fourth floor. The layout aligns with the principles of Vastu-shastra, with taller structures placed in the south-west, kitchens being located in the south-east and the positioning of the open-air plaza at the centre.
The massing and layout of the built forms tactfully ensure that the plaza and the event spaces within the building are shaded. The plaza is aligned in the north-south direction to receive the pleasant south-westerly wind, which flows through the centre towards the upper tower blocks. As a result of this planning, this central space is bathed in warm diffused natural light throughout the day, and becomes an animated stage of public interaction and movement. With a deck for casual seating and resting, the plaza is marked by its temporal rhythms of activity- in the mornings occupied by gymming or yoga enthusiasts, idle in the quiet afternoons and an active hub at times of concerts or events like product launches.
The design of the mall has focused on the use of innovative and modern technologies to create unique and dynamic architecture. This is evident right from the main entrance of the structure, which welcomes visitors with an imposing, swooping canopy made of fibreglass and steel frames, shaped in the form of a petal. Inside, there is an expansive central atrium, designed as a contemporary adaptation of a blooming lotus.The atrium is filled with glorious natural light throughout the day, filtered in through double-glazed glass panels that reduce the load on the building’s HVAC system. In addition, its high-end framing system allows the creation of an exceptionally striking design for the skylight while also keeping it light-weight and water-proof. The interiors of the mall reflect.conceptual appropriation of the lotus, where it pervades the design through warm colours, inscriptions, and petal patterns on the ceiling. The central atrium and grand columns in the mall create a spacious and lively atmosphere. The food court, visually connected with the atrium, is an exciting and spirited space to be, with multiple international food outlets, and a space to accommodate 600 seats with both indoor and outdoor seating.
Secluded from the crowded front of the mall, is a 150 keys service apartment block with a remarkable blend of living and office space. Accessed from a triple volume entry lobby, these apartments are available in both single modules and double modules, and are facilitated with housekeeping services. The project also comprises a 170 keys business hotel, which is 10 stories high and accommodates furnished rooms of 22 sq. m. area each with all necessary facilities. This hotel has a dedicated gate accessed from the secondary street, which ensures that privacy is afforded to all its guests.
The facade of the building leverages its prominent position on the main street, and allows the display of large signages and advertisements on its facade, increasing its commercial value. The design of the facade has an iconic LED lit feature constituting a lattice screen (jaali) patterned in abstract geometrical motifs symbolising the lotus.Contrasting this bright and evocative facade display of the mall, are the neutral concrete blocks of the hotels and offices at the rear end of the site.This contrast is effective in composing the massing of the project blocks hierarchically, maintaining the visual identity of each block.
Vegas is one of the largest and finest public commercial projects in India. The luxurious mixed-use facility which employs state-of-the-art technology and design, is a unique urban centre that brings together the experience of business, fashion, shopping, leisure and entertainment. It is one of the contemporary designs that is sensitive to the cultural and material needs of the urban fabric. The project has successfully integrated an exceptionally dynamic public node in Dwarka’s tightly laid urban fabric, and will continue to add value to this upscale area of the city.
Vegas Mall Mixed Use
|SECTORS||Mixed Use, Retail, Office, Hospitality|