The Brand Story: Total Environment
There are very few brands like Apple, Ferrari or Rolex that pass the “smash your product” test today. Likewise, if a Total Environment home is smashed into pieces, you would know from the debris, that it’s a Total Environment home. It is perhaps the only real estate brand in the world that can claim this.
For the longest time, the word “Design” in the apartment housing space has been restricted to meaning“gimmick” or “styling” or spending a lot of money on expensive facades, themes, fixtures and fittings. Perhaps, because this category has always been commercially driven, the focus has been on the facades and themes, and never on the actual home design. Architects Shibanee & Kamal realized that if they had to bring about a change to this situation, they would need to take on the daunting task of developing and constructing such projects on their own and build a powerful construction and development company. It was from this need that Total Environment was born in 1996.
- Design and Detail: The approach to design at Total Environment has always been about finding creative solutions from the problem itself and therefore a lot depends on how the problem is defined. Total Environment takes the “Product” approach to the home design, with a sharp focus on the smallest details, to ensure minimum problems during use. Also, simple clean lines and free flowing spaces ensure a certain timelessness of the design.
- Garden with every home:Total Environment introduced the idea of a terrace garden with every single home, back in 1998. Each garden is double height – achieved either through cantilevering the gardens in different directions on alternate floors, creating stepped / terraced homes, duplex apartments with double height gardens or through several other techniques. Large glass panels help bring nature into the home. Over the years, these gardens have progressed from small “handkerchief” gardens to large gardens with decks and water bodies.
- Natural materials & ageing gracefully:One of the nicest things about a Total Environment home is how it ages gracefully, turning more beautiful as it grows older. The exposed brick exteriors develop a unique character and the Kota stone and marble floors get better with age.
- Furnished Homes:Total Environment manufactures furniture that is carefully designed for each space in the homes, keeping in mind the position of electrical points, the location of the window, the swing of the door and every other small detail that is so important for comfort and privacy.
- Individual Customization through eDesign:Total Environment has created software – eDesign that brings “Design” to everyone so that it is no more restricted to only those who can afford an architect or interior designer. This software also calculates all the differential quantities and feeds them into Total Environment’s SAP system for procurement planning and project management. Through this tool, a home buyer can customize the wall positions, furniture layout, select furniture and fittings and decide details down to the spacing between the shelves in a wardrobe.
- Total Environment Machine-Craft:Total Environment Machine Craft pools craftsmanship with technology to deliver the products with unique combination of production quality and a handcrafted feel, needed to build individually customized and furnished homes.
- Property Management:Total Environment maintains and supports their projects for years. They are currently still supporting homes that they delivered 20 years ago.
- Quality:Each Total Environment Home is checked across 1048 different items, and any snags that are detected are resolved before handing over the home to its owners.
- Transparency & Ethics:Total Environment’s ability to keep things simple, transparent and above board has helped build an enormous amount of trust with their customers. From the very beginning in 1996, long before the advent of RERA, Total Environment used carpet area as the basis for calculating saleable area.
- Sustainability:Total Environment set up a Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Design through which they explore a single area of sustainability each year – Water, Energy, Process, Materials and so on.
“Most real-estate companies try to create a position of “luxury”. The meaning of the word luxury, is either “enjoyment of comforts necessary for a reasonable standard of well-being” OR “a foolish or worthless form of self-indulgence”. Home-buyers in India are looking for homes that are well designed, comfortable& spacious and of course in a good location. I don’t think a home owner goes about looking for a “luxury” home” he says. Total Environment’s positioning has always been about providing a great experience through warm, well-designed and beautifully crafted homes, embracing nature – homes that can be personalized to a high degree of detail by each family.”Architects Kamal