Amit Goel’s Penthouse
Posted on 19/08/2022
How it happened
Messung had completed the automation in Maya Satellite, a project by Goel Ganga. The apartments were set up with one front-end device and basic lights and fans on automation with a provision for an upgrade. One show flat was prepared with a full-fledged automation system. Mr. Goel, impressed with the system, commissioned Messung to automate his penthouse in the same project.
“In our experience, the individual homes we have commissioned thus far have been our proudest end products. This is because, unlike an office space or a hotel lobby, these projects are built on real interactions with the homeowners who will live in that space for decades. This is true for our dedicated partners and their projects across the country. Over the course of the installation, the engineers and sales team develop a rapport with the residents, understanding their lifestyles and defining the automation’s functionalities based on their routines. They reciprocate our recommendations. They trust us to populate their living space with comfort and convenience that will last for the next 5-8 years or longer.”
We had multiple rounds of conversations with Mr. Goel and the Metaphors team (architects) to understand the peculiar requirements of this project, their vision, technical effort, and aesthetic needs. These conversations help us draw the map for the project; information is gathered in great detail because it’s never just another automation; it’s always aiding a lifestyle. After our initial rounds of discussions, the products were finalized, and functional requirements were noted to be incorporated into the systems. Cabling was already done on CAT6, but Mr. Goel preferred our solution. We had to carefully figure out the intricacies of the wiring to understand how to incorporate our KNX-Crestron hybrid system. Once we got the cabling done right, the rest fit into place.
“It’s always the small, foundational things. If you do them right, everything else falls into place. As a team, we try to be part of the discussion in an individual residential inquiry from the early stages of the project. As KNX is a wired BUS protocol, we work with the interior designers on the drawings and system architecture. Then we define the scope of automation and gauge client feedback. As a thumb rule, always make provisions for future upgrades. You may think you don’t need motorized shades in the living room today, but this could become a need in the future. From lights, AC, fans, and door locks to Alexa, every control element is checked and tested. We don’t just sell the products and forget about the consequences. We help make homes.”
Mr. Goel wanted all basic controls like lights, AC, curtains, fans on automation, as well as the audio-video setup for the home theater. Apart from the keypads, Mr. Goel also wanted all controls to be available on phones and tablets.
Building the experience
Every installation comes with its unique challenges. Our goal is always to create a space that seamlessly fuses with the residents’ way of living. Beyond those fancy keypads, powerful software, and intuitive technology, what is really demanded is an experience so harmonious and natural as experiencing the Sun. It shouldn’t feel like an extra effort. After a while, it should fuse with the daily lives of the family members. Building for such a non-technical thing requires heavy technical prowess. Even if one aspect doesn’t work as expected, it breaks the experience and brings the system into conscious awareness.
The major challenge we were facing in this installation was figuring out the cabling. Once we sorted that, we had to get the lighting right. Lighting was also a major task as the penthouse incorporated analog, phase-cut, and LED dimming. This required different controllers for the specific lights, which were checked carefully for smooth dimming. Sensors were placed in the washrooms, which are triggered when they detect motion and turn on and off the lights based on occupancy. These sensors were explicitly tuned for only zonal control based on the client’s preferences. The ACs were controlled on KNX AC gateways.
To cover the entire penthouse, eighteen tailor-made capacitive touchpads were designed and installed in ergonomic spots. The keypads were designed in consultation with the architects and Mr. Goel to elevate the interiors as well as satisfy the aesthetic taste of the family.
You want your home to acquire your personality, to understand your distinctive taste, and so, you populate it with objects that best define you.”
Apart from the keypads, different user interfaces (UI) were also designed for phones and tablets. This dramatically increased convenience as now everything can be controlled through the smartphone. It surely is a big help at home, but the major benefits are felt when the members are away from home. The home can be controlled remotely, so whether it’s opening the door for a maid, receiving a parcel, or checking the locks and security cameras—all can be done from anywhere.
The audio-video (AV) setup for home theater was done over a Crestron processor. Now, because the entire house was on a KNX eco-structure, we had to integrate the Crestron processor with KNX to ensure an exceptional experience. This integration made the two systems communicate smoothly and helped define various scenes that involved an interplay of lights, curtains, climate, audio, and video.
After encountering zero issues at the site in the first ten months, Mr. Goel asked us to automate his terrace/lounge space. Good thing we made provisions for this and finished wiring it even though the client earlier said he wasn’t looking at automation in that area. Thumb rules!