Sunday 23 April 2017

Forever family homes launch in Castleknock

The five-bed semi-detached homes at Castleknock Cross are high spec, with cornicing, architraves
The five-bed semi-detached homes at Castleknock Cross are high spec, with cornicing, architraves

Independent.ie property

So few of us have an appetite for climbing the property ladder these days. We will invest in a first home and, if we can manage it, a subsequent second purchase, somewhere we can live for the rest of our lives.

When it comes to buying that forever home, we need to get it right. Location tends to be the most important thing - somewhere close to good schools, amenities, a transport network. Castleknock has it all, in spades.

Underfloor heating, walnut herringbone floors and smartly designed kitchens by Arena Kitchens
Underfloor heating, walnut herringbone floors and smartly designed kitchens by Arena Kitchens

The cosy village offers shops, pubs and restaurants, as well as a strong sense of community, the excellent schools, bus and train links, and of course Phoenix Park. Castleknock Cross, which launches this week, is prime forever-home fodder. Opposite Castleknock Lawn Tennis Club,on the corner of the old Navan Road, Beachpark Avenue, within walking distance of the village, these 33, three-storey five-bedroom homes, from approximately 213sqm, are expected to appeal to families moving up from starter homes.

In this initial launch, seven units will come to the market, two of which are detached, one on a corner site, for €1.25m, the remaining five are semi-detached. Semis are from €820,000, detached from €915,000

"People are more choosy when they're picking their second house," says selling agent Ronan O'Driscoll of Sherry FitzGerald New Homes. "They're much more inclined to really shop around and look at the specifications of what they're getting."

Interior designer Jennifer Grace of The Good Room in Malahide was responsible for the fit-out on the show houses, and she explains the unusual route they took to ensuring a high specification, most of which is continued throughout the entire 33 units. They chose small operators who usually specialise in one-off bespoke projects, such as the high-end designers, Arena Kitchens, who provided the kitchens in all 33 units.

"They predominantly cater for the individual market, rather than big developments. Really bespoke, one-off kitchens, that's their area of expertise," says Grace, enumerating a number of special features in the kitchens: the solid timber units, which can be painted any colour, the double island, with drawers and working space on both sides, and the dropped ceiling.

"A dropped ceiling is an expensive thing to do but it allowed us to zone the room with lighting. So at night time when you're not using the kitchen area, you want to sit down and relax, you can put on mood lighting and it fades the kitchen out, allowing the room to be used in a different way."

The lighting specification in these houses is also impressive, with numerous LED spots throughout, and adjustable ambient wall-mounted light switches in all cases, including for lamps. Skirtings are high at 20cm, and there are architraves throughout the downstairs rooms. All bedroom wardrobes are custom made, and again can be painted. The downstairs rooms have under-floor heating, and the living room includes a beautiful walnut herringbone floor. All appliances are provided.

Price: Five bed semi-d from €820,000; five bed detached from €915,000

Agent: Sherry FitzGerald New Homes (01) 667 1888

Viewing: Today, 12-2pm; and October 15-16, 12-2pm

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