Nine-bed Washington DC mansion bought for €11m to serve as Irish ambassador’s US residence

Department of Foreign Affairs was previously renting property which was most expensive for sale in US capital when first put on market

The Department of Foreign Affairs spent €11 million buying a nine-bedroom mansion in Washington DC to serve as the official residence of the Irish ambassador to the United States.

The State had previously been renting the large property on 30th Street, Washington DC, since August last year.

Earlier this year, the department put the former official residence of the Irish ambassador to the US up for sale, seeking €3.7 million for the property.

In a statement, the department confirmed it had bought the new residence on 30th Street, for a price of “around $12 million”, which was “significantly lower” than the $18.5 million sum the mansion had originally been advertised for in 2021.


“Several professional and technical reports were commissioned as part of the purchase process and the negotiated price was shown to provide value for money, both in the current market and in the context of the building’s intended usage,” the department said.

The mansion was the most expensive property for sale in the US capital when it was first put on the market in 2021.

The current ambassador to the US, Geraldine Byrne Nason, previously served as Ireland’s ambassador to the United Nations, where she was heavily involved in Ireland’s successful effort to win a seat on the UN security council.

Ms Byrne Nason had hosted “a broad range of public and private events” in the official residence over the last year it had been rented by the State, the department said.

“These events were among the range of factors which were taken into account when considering the suitability of the property as a permanent diplomatic residence,” it said.

The department said a real estate agency had been appointed to sell the former official residence, “in accordance with the appropriate public procurement guidelines”.

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Jack Power

Jack Power

Jack Power is acting Europe Correspondent of The Irish Times