Sandymount double: Old world style and contemporary chic

Period-style kitchen with Miele appliances and a real sense of space and proportion

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Address: 66 Tritonville Road Sandymount Dublin 4
Price: €1,500,000
Agent: Sherry FitzGerald

Aga warms the heart of  €1.5m Sandymount four-bed

"We installed the Aga just before that very bad winter about seven years ago; we'd come in shivering with the cold, and all the kids would run to warm themselves on it," says Mary Hale of the large range, which takes centre stage in the kitchen.

"It's a rather expensive bum-warmer," laughs Ed Rhatigan of design duo Rhatigan and Hick who, along with Gary Hick are sitting around the breakfast table designing a kitchen for the family's new home around the corner.

The new design is sleek and modern, in contrast to the period style of her current home, but one feature remains the same: a large Aga. For many people, once they get used to an Aga it becomes an essential feature of their home.

Hale's kitchen at 66 Tritonville Road in Sandymount also features a Miele oven and an electric hob which the family use during summer months. The kitchen is very well made, with solid wood carcasses. Even the interior of the larder has a granite shelf – which echoes the countertops throughout. The larder "replaced the contents of seven presses" says Hale, and the Miele fridge and freezer are also larder-style.


Roof lanterns

To the rear of the kitchen is a large dining and living space, which is remarkably bright thanks to two roof lanterns and walls of glass. This in turn leads to the maintenance-free rear garden. Also at this level is a bedroom, which brings the total number to four. This room has had many reincarnations over the years, depending on the needs of the family.

The property is set over four floors, as all houses on the terrace were originally constructed with rooms at attic level.

At hall level are two gracious reception rooms that run the gamut of Victorian-era features, including high ceilings, detailed cornicing and remarkable marble fireplaces – which are currently fuelled by gas.

On the first floor is the family bathroom, which feels a tad dark despite the installation of a light tunnel. Also on this floor is the master bedroom, which is en-suite, and a double bedroom overlooking the rear garden. A further bedroom takes up the entire floor upstairs.

Sherry FitzGerald is seeking €1.5 million for the 242sq m property, which is in excellent condition. Number 91 sold in 2016 for €1.1 million and number 68 with 257sq m, sold in 2012 for €1.22 million.

Comfortable six-bed home in Sandymount for €3

In 1920s New York, there was much fuss about Leopold Bloom – the character in James Joyce's Ulysses, and his shenanigans on Sandymount Strand. The New York Society for the Suppression of Vice, which oversaw public morality, declared a part of the book, which featured in an American journal, as obscene.

This in turn led to a trial known as The United States vs One Book called Ulysses, which eventually ruled that the book, today considered to be one of the most important works of modern literature, was neither pornographic nor obscene. For a decade copies of the book were burned by the United States Postal Service. Ironically, a first edition of the book was sold by Christies in New York for €333,600 in 2009.

Just a short stroll from the strand where Stephen Dedalus, another character in Ulysses, wandered "into eternity" is Rosario, located at 36 Gilford Road.

The property has been home to the same family for the last 25 years. “Now it’s just the two of us and a very fat cat, so we don’t need a six-bedroom house any longer,” say the owners who are downsizing.

When they first purchased the property, they installed central heating and rewired the entire house, one of the last houses to be rewired by the ESB. Secondary glazing was added to the original sash window to exclude any draughts.

Three reception rooms

The semi-detached property, stretching to 300sq m is very deceptive from the exterior. Once inside the front hall, the sense of space and proportion of the rooms becomes evident.

The property has three fine reception rooms at hall level. Despite slightly outdated decor , the historic bones of the architectural era of the house are all here, including six marble and four cast-iron fireplaces.

At garden level lies a kitchen and large utility, which new owners will want to update – possibly into a large, open-plan kitchen and living space in keeping with current trends.

The house has six bedrooms, one of which is used as a study. The family bathroom is enormous as bathrooms go, and was more than likely a bedroom at some point. It has been given a complete facelift and the original fireplace, which has a gas inset, warms the room on winter nights.

In the private gardens extending to 0.3 of an acre are many magnolia trees and an impressive Cornus controversa. An added bonus is the old coach house. While currently used as storage, this offers great potential for conversion to family/au pair accommodation, or a games room.

Rosario is an elegant spacious property and a good conservation architect will transform the house. The property is for sale through Sherry FitzGerald for €3 million.

Elizabeth Birdthistle

Elizabeth Birdthistle

Elizabeth Birdthistle, a contributor to The Irish Times, writes about property, fine arts, antiques and collectables