Ajit Agarkar represented India since he was 19 and has been a part of Team India during three World Cup tours, former Indian international cricketer, Ajit Agarkar, the 3rd highest wicket taker for India in the ODIs has made a name for himself. Apart from playing for the Delhi Daredevils and the Kolkata Knight Riders in the IPL (Indian Premier League), Ajit also led the Mumbai team into victory for the 40th Ranji Trophy title in 2013 before his retirement from cricket. Currently he is working as an expert commentator with ESPN Cricinfo, Star Sports and NDTV. He has also found a new hobby of writing and has taken to golf as his passion. He got married to his beautiful wife Fatima in 2002, who is the Managing Director of JBCN Education, which is a company that she co-founded 15 years ago. JBCN Education currently manages 18 flagship schools which includes three international schools in Mumbai.
Fatima is a passionate educationist who although pursued her career in consultancy and management after an MBA, she finally discovered her calling in education and since then has been instrumental in path-breaking learning and with their wonderful nine year old son, who aspires to be the next Steve Jobs and loves to read and play football. Read on as Ajit describes his home and the memories attached to it.
❐As a family, what are the aspects that define your life?
All three of us love to travel. We spend every summer in London where we rent an apartment and enjoy a very peaceful time, away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life in Mumbai. Other than travelling, sport is a huge influence in the Agarkar family. Sports is in our DNA, every sport is watched and followed and played from table tennis to football, cricket, basketball and even baseball while mommie (Fatima) tends to be the fielder. We also are huge movie buffs. We love to take off to our outhouse in Lonavla on weekends and spend time reading and relaxing.
❐ How does your house reflect your personality?
For us, home is a place where we can spend time as a family, a place where we have the freedom to do things together. As we are a very sport-oriented family, the space around the house has been created around this aspect. We have a Foosball table right around the middle of the lounge, a shooting area for my son to dunk his basketball, air-hockey tables, chess etc. We planned our house with lots of free and open spaces so that our son would get enough space to be a kid and run around. We are simple people; therefore our interiors also reflect the subtlety with clean-cut lines and modern yet muted undertones. We are very shy (laughs) so the right colour for us is experimenting with a shade of bronze. We wanted softer hues for the house because it exuberates warmth. When our architect suggested purple for our bathroom, we almost flipped out! The tone of our house is a reflection of who we are. We have focused on elegant but soft décor with lots of brown and pastel shades and colour.
❐ Please describe the “look and feel” of the exteriors and interiors of the house.
We love the empty spaces in our house whether it is in the interiors or the exteriors; the space in our house simply stands out. Living in a city like Mumbai where there is a dearth of space, it is nice to come home to lush green fields where kids have enough space to play football or cricket, tennis or squash. Not just our outdoors but the interiors of our house are spacious with less clutter and lots of painting and plants which gives it a very homely look and feel.
❐ Give a brief idea about the art or other collections used in designing the house.
We have used paintings very liberally. While designing the house, we have combined the muted tones of the wall with the paintings and rugs which have been acquired from our travels in the far East and vases from the Middle East etc. These help in keeping with the contemporary look and feel of our design.
❐ Give a brief idea about the unique furniture used to design the house.
We have used furniture with very clean cut lines and no fancy carvings. We have inculcated designs with a combination of different stones like marbles in muted colours to match the look and feel of the house. We also have made sure to use a lot of pillows to adorn the two seating areas in the lounge and in the bedroom which gives the space a very warm and inviting look.
❐ Which is your favourite area in the house?
I love the lounge area. The whole family tends to hang out and watch a lot of sports in the lounge together. The lady of the house loves her bedroom where she has her work-station and because of her career, she has to be available 24×7 which makes her bedroom very comforting, relaxing and comfortable. Every time she gets an idea, she can just hop from the bed and jot it down at the work-station.
❐ Is there any space for relaxation in the house like a library or a mini bar?
Yes, we do. We have a mini bar and a library which becomes the favourite place to hang out when our friends come over.
❐ How did you choose to decorate your son’s living space?
It is a typical boy’s room with shades of blue. Similar to the rest of the house, it also has a lot of paintings and sepia tone photographs of his growing up years and memories of his travel. His room also includes fun stuff like ladders and monkey bars.