Monday, 30 July 2012

The Grand Mansions Of Chettinad

The South Indian community of Chettinad is known for its long ago concentration of merchants, bankers and a general monied class that spared no expense in living an opulent lifestyle. Most of the families are long gone, but a lot of their mansions remain.

Homes date back a hundred or more years and were built to house an extended family. Private bedroom spaces are small, but the communal living, dining and hanging out areas are huge. The places were meant for gatherings and parties. Any chance to display the wealth. Let's takes a tour.

A typical mansion, a combination of colonial and South Indian architecture.

Fine tile work on a porch, a local talent (more on tiles in an upcoming post). A detail of window shutters.

An opulent, double height interior.
Many finishing materials were imported. Don't forget to have your portrait painted! And you deserve it, after commissioning those incredible wood carved columns.

A dining hall for 50. Why have a regular railing when a nicely-carved, high relief elephant is possible?

1 comment:

  1. Opulent as this is, it makes you realize how completely obscene the Vanderbilt-esque mansions are for the monied elite in western nations today. Crazy-town.

    NIce tilework though. :o)