Nestled between the high-rise towers of the Southridge development, journalist Ritu Upadhyay’s Downtown duplex villa is a stylish urban oasis.
The eclectic interiors are a travelogue of the many places she and her American diplomat husband, Vinay Chawla, have lived. “Our home is always evolving,” she says. “I’m a believer in ‘your home is your story’. Like our lives, our home is on a constant journey. We tend to collect things over time, and our tastes change and evolve based on our environment and experiences.”
Among her favourites pieces is a large armoire covered in hammered sheet metal that she found in Jodhpur, Rajasthan. The floor-to-ceiling windows ensure the home is bathed in natural light. Beautiful views of the Burj Khalifa provide the perfect backdrop for collectibles and art from around the region: carpets from Iran, art from Indonesia, India and Pakistan, and pottery from Jordan.
Ritu loves spending time on the large outdoor terrace, which doubles as a lush open-air space for outdoor entertaining. “We don’t have a traditional yard, so we created a terrace garden for our dog, Chester, to relax in and get fresh air during the day,” she says.