100 out-of-this-world ideas

New Delhi, Oct 18 (IANSlife) Hundred aspiring designers, architects, do-it-yourselfers, and makers from 23 nations were selected from tens of thousands of entries to realise their wild space ideas as part of the $10,000,000 OMG! Fund. Each winner will receive up to $100,000 USD to help them realise their fantastical creations.

Five recipients from India were selected by the fund. The winning concepts stood out for their original and inspiring designs, attention to sustainability, and creative approaches to providing immersive guest experiences. Over the course of the next ten months, they will design, build, and furnish their spaces so that they are ready for guests by summer 2023, when you might be able to find them listed in Airbnb’s OMG! Category.

Decided upon by the OMG! These elaborate plans are anticipated to win the OMG! Award from the fund’s judging panel, which includes design and fashion icon Iris Apfel, architect Koichi Takada, Airbnb Superhost Kristie Wolfe, and Airbnb VP of Experiential Bruce Vaughn. Once they become bookable on the platform, a category of homes become 100 times more extraordinary.

The successful India applicants broaden the definition of what an Airbnb stay can be, from a sprout house farm stay in the Western Ghats of Maharashtra to a cheeky mango mansion close to Madurai in Tamil Nadu to a sustainable and livable giant molar tooth.

The Wow! Fund recipients have the chance to benefit from the significant economic advantages of hosting on the platform, with which many are already familiar because more than 50 percent are already Hosts. In India, the number of nights reserved at distinctive properties has increased by more than 30% in just the last two years, from 2019 to 2021. As more visitors book unusual accommodations, hosts are also making money, with unique listings in India alone making close to INR 250 million just in 2021.

Meet the five Indian OMG! recipients who made it to the top 100 list:

Himalayan Fruit Shaped Bedrooms created by Arun M.

Imagine staying in a Kafal (Myrica esculenta) shaped bedroom located at a height of 6900 ft from sea level, in a quaint little village called Makkumath in the Himalayan state of Uttarakhand.

This home will have a ‘bunch’ of Kafal shaped valley view rooms, joined by a leaf solar bridge on top. Each room will be painted in a unique shade from green to dark maroon, to represent the varying shades of the local fruit. The rooms will have mud flooring, reflecting the local tradition to maintain natural cooling. All the bedrooms will come with a verandah that will merge into the endless views of the nearby forest.

Talking about the inspiration for this idea, OMG! Fund recipient Arun said, “The idea of this space is to give a tribute to the mysterious and sustainable life and culture of the Himalayas. I have really fond childhood memories of visiting our family home in Uttarakhand, and eating Kafal fruit during the summers. This project for me is a way to rebuild that childhood home. It would be a home to all those who yearn to return to the lap of nature.”

Sustainable and Habitable Giant Molar Tooth created by Pewly D.

Located in a small forest in the heart of Tripura, this Molar residence will look like a real tooth. Designed with organic shapes, and locally sourced sustainable materials, it will feel as if you’re living within a carved tooth.

“I’m a nature inspired architect and children’s book author, who’s always aspired to bridge the gap between architecture in fantasy worlds and real life. My proposed project is a sustainable and habitable giant molar tooth, located in a private woodland in Northeast India. It was first conceptualized in a fantasy book I authored about teeth dwelling beings and I’m excited about turning this idea into an actual living space for Airbnb guests,” said Pewly.

Sprout House Farm Stay created by Milind S.

The Sprout House will be an organic living experience that goes beyond just providing a good stay and food. It is about embracing the basics – going back to the roots, to grow and thrive in the lap of nature. The Sprout House will be built at the banks of Krishna river, next to a thriving biodiversity spot of Maharashtra, located at a drivable distance from Pune. At the Sprout House, guests will wake up every day to the wonderful sights and sounds of nature and enjoy a peaceful getaway. The organic stay is quite fittingly inspired by sprout – in both its spirit and shape.

Milind S, the brainchild behind the Sprout House Farm Stay said, “Sprout House is more than just a place to stay and eat. It’s about living in nature and getting back to the basics. The goal is to get more farmers to use organic farming methods, consider operating a farm-stay as one of their other consistent revenue streams, and get more people to live an organic lifestyle.”

Mischievous Mango Mansion created by Rajan E.

The mango mansion will be located in the southern part of India in Natham near Madurai Tamil Nadu. The mansion will be surrounded by beautiful mango trees consisting of various mango types native to India. The mango mansion will be unique with its mango shaped mansion from top view and front view illustrating the different mango size and shapes for style.

Invisible Farmhouse at a Mango Orchard created by Ankur A.

How about staying at an ‘Invisible’ farmhouse with fields on one side and an orchard on the other, located in an ancestral farm in Gabhana, Aligarh, close to Delhi. The idea is to cover the external walls of the house with seamless reflective glass and metal to reflect the branches, leaves, and the sky and therefore completely camouflage the presence of the house.

“The inspiration for the idea came after visiting my friend’s family in Gabhana, Aligarh, who have been remarkable custodians of these Mango orchards for generations. The invisible house will be a place that encourages reconciling with nature by completely dissolving within the orchard. This is a design for people who like to escape from the hustle and bustle of urban life,” said Ankur.

(IANSlife can be contacted at ianslife@ians.in)

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