Mukesh Ambani's houseToday I am going far from Italy to another enchanting and fascinating country, India, where Sonia Gandhi, an Italian born politician (she was born near Vicenza but lived in Turin until she married Rajiv Gandhi, son of Indira) is currently the President of the Indian National Congress Party and the leader of the Congress Parliamentary Party.
Having said that to justify this post in a blog mostly on Italian design (do I need to justify? well not really) I continue saying that I was struck by these news: Indian billionaire and one of the world's richest men, Mukesh Ambani, has hosted a lavish house-warming for his new 27-storey, (twenty seven...with 11 high speed elevators of course) residence, in Mumbai, believed to be the world's most expensive home, named Antilia and considered "the Taj Mahal of the 21st Century" and a "Versailles rival".
Mr. Ambani, his wife Nita and three children will be taken care by 600 members of staff.
Reports suggest the residence is worth more than 1 Billion dollars! But as the "proud" owners pointed out, this is their one and only residence, they insist they do not own villas secluded in exotic destinations around the world as many other billionaires have.
The ground floor and five floors are the parking area that can accommodate as many as 160 cars and the Ambani family will occupy the top four floors of the mansion, below the three helipads of the mansion.
The skyscraper has a cinema seating 50, swimming pools, gardens, a temple.
Shobhaa De an Indian writer and columnist, who was at the inaugural party said "It is already the most controversial building in the world, for reasons that go beyond its unconventional architecture (...)There is a lot of marble, there is a lot of mother of pearl. There are areas and gardens and lotus pools and absolutely beautiful Krishna temple. There is art, there's sculpture, there is a huge bar, there is a swimming pool," she said "and people should not grudge him his indulgences (...) he generates a great amount of employment for those very poor and contributes to the economy."
The house was designed according to Vaastu principles, an Indian tradition similar to Chinese feng shui. It is important to know that in India a home is considered a "human temple" not just a shelter to rest and eat. For centuries the Vaastu system of design, mainly used for shrines and temples, was based on 5 elements: earth, water, fire, air and space. When designing a building Vaastu doctrine says it is important to understand the relation between these five natural forces. The system combines all the five elements and balances them with the person and the material and lately has been applied increasingly to public and private buildings, like this incredible one.
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Images from Internet various sources