Peek inside this renovated Victorian coach house in Dalkey for €1.45m
In an eclectic twist of historic recycling, the Coach House at Nerano Road in Dalkey has an original Victorian coach house built into its walls, but contained in the boundary wall of the holding rather than the house itself.
A decade ago if you passed by the site of The Coach House, you'd have seen a cut-stone out-building with a galvanised steel roof attached. This was originally the coach house attached to Sorrento - one of the well known "big" houses on this stretch; named, as many homes and roads here are, after locations in the Bay of Naples which the Victorians believed the seaside enclave most resembled.
The original coach house and its immediate grounds was one of three sites attached to 7,000 sq ft Sorrento's extensive holdings. These were pared off and sold before the main house was itself acquired for a sum believed to be in the order of €5m in at the height of the bubble in 2006. Sorrento was eventually restored and extended under the guidance of De Blacam and Meagher.
The coach house site in turn was acquired a decade ago by a couple from the area who were trading down as empty nesters from a larger property on Knocknacree Road in Dalkey. With it came full planning permission for a new home in the period seaside villa style prepared by the vendor's architects.
While planners had acknowledged that the coach house was unsaveable or at the very least unusable in its existent form, they were insistent that it in some way be incorporated into the new dwelling. It was therefore conditional that it be dismantled and the original granite - quarried just up the road at Dalkey Hill - be used to construct the boundary wall for the new property. The stone made up almost enough with the buyers having to acquire a small amount more to complete their wall.
It's an example of planning compromise when it comes to making sensible decisions on historic buildings of no particular architectural value. In this case, the original period building today assists the components of the new site in reflecting the sentiment and appearance of the area.
The new owners decided to maintain the exterior contained within the original plans but exploited wiggle room for the internal dimensions when they called in their own architect Tim Kane, known for his use of light and height. The house took 11 months to complete. The result is a home which doesn't look out of place on one of Dublin's most scenic Victorian enclaves but one which has, for a decade, fulfilled the modern needs of its owners.
Spanning 1,900 sq ft - or the equivalent of a modern semi with an additional floor added - the Coach House has underfloor heating on two floors, Viking double glazing, polished oak floors and electronic security gates outside.
The main entrance hall is a feature which serves to inject light into the house as well as give a strong first impression. A lit upper atrium disperses light down through both floors. There's an ornate timber carved staircase and a porcelain tiled floor as well as some clever under-stairs storage.
In another nod to the period Victorian style, the house has an interlinking living room and dining room layout which provides for separate or open use for entertaining. There are coved ceilings and oak floor is parquet in a herringbone style. There's an Adam style marble fireplace surround with an enclosed Kingstar fire as well as French doors leading out to the garden. Another strong feature is the open plan kitchen and breakfast room. There's a Neff double oven, microwave and dishwasher, an extractor, and hot drawer. The kitchen/breakfast-room also has a gas fired stove to help keep it warm in winter and a utility room for a washing machine. Again, there are French double doors to the garden.
Upstairs the master bedroom comes with its own en suite shower room as well a separate walk-in changing room. There are two other bedrooms on this floor and a main bathroom which includes a bath and a bidet.
Outside, the front garden area has a cobbled forecourt area with parking for two vehicles and the rear garden is paved extensively with Indian sandstone flags. There is a shed/garden room for additional storage.
But overall the attraction is the locale - one of Dublin's best addresses. The Coach House is within 50 yards of scenic Coliemore Harbour and seven minute's walk from the famous Finnegans Pub - regulars include the area's celebrities. Bono can often be seen supping there and last year Timothy Dalton was a regular.
The late bestselling author Maeve Binchy - who lived next door - was also an enthusiast.
The Coach House is for sale through agent Vinnie Finnegan and can be acquired for the price tag of €1.45m.
The Coach House
Nerano Road, Dalkey, Co Dublin
Asking price: €1.45m
Agent: Vinnie Finnegan (01) 2984695