The building was constructed in 1910 by Thiru S.A.S.S. Subramanian, a prosperous Tamil merchant from the famous Chettiar community, known for their trade and financing success across Southern Asia. Despite the fact that most of Subramanian’s business activities were based in Malacca, Malaysia, S.A.S.S. Subramanian wished to maintain a home in his native region as did the majority of Chettiars of this period. Therefore he began construction on a spacious and luxurious family residence, a tribute to and demonstration of his success.
Saratha Vilas is the result of the discovery of the sub Indian continent, by two architects, Bernard Dragon and Michel Adment. Their story began with their direct collaboration with Kerala based artisans in the development and production of a furniture collection presented in France under the label Gondwana. Then the two designer-architects made their first exploration of the Chettinad region where they found thousands of palatial mansions across a region consisting of 73 villages and 2 larger cities.