Saturday 25 October 2014

Phil Coulter's mansion is still on song for over €1m

Published 18/01/2013 | 05:00

The Eurovision songwriter is downsizing from his eight-bed Bray home - but you'll need €1.275m to move in, writes Donal Buckley

Eurovision-winning songwriter Phil Coulter is selling his family home in Bray, Co Wicklow, as his children are flying the coup and he finds himself spending more time abroad composing and performing.

Located just a short walk from the town centre, the property is known as Killarney House on Killarney Road. Phil and his wife, singer and painter Geraldine Branagan, bought the half-acre property 21 years ago to accommodate their six growing children.

In all, the 436sqm main house accommodates eight bedrooms and there's a studio wing with 108sqm, as well as a separate mews of 32sqm.

Coulter will have a busy time in the next few weeks as he will be one of the key performers at the launch of City of Derry's European Capital of Culture along with a number of other fellow Derry musical stars.

He is also due to tour Ireland in February and March with his off-Broadway show, The Songs I Love So Well. It will start in Galway on February 23 and include two concerts in Bray on March 1 and 2. Already it received rave reviews in the US and The Washington Post reported: "He alternates his own work with classic Irish folk music, interspersed with polished anecdotes."

Coulter has written a number of popular Eurovision songs as well as receiving gold discs for his record sales.

Killarney House was built in a number of phases over the centuries and its attractive rambling ambience extends along a horseshoe shape to the rear. To the front are the period formal rooms on both sides of the hall and these benefit from the light-catching bay windows.

The arched hallway features plaster cornices and a mezzanine gallery that leads to a guest bedroom suite, which includes two bedrooms and an ensuite bathroom. At first-floor level there are three more bedrooms, two of which are ensuite as well as a fitness room.

At rear ground-floor level, a room described as a garden bar/den is connected by an archway to a conservatory. Also within this area is an eat-in kitchen, which is designed in a homely style with brick work and beamed ceiling as well as accommodating an Aga cooker and a centre island. Its workspace is supplemented with a utility room while arched glazed doors lead to a TV/den.

The east wing accommodates Phil's studio zone, which includes a studio lined with many of the gold and platinum discs which the composer earned over his career, as well as offices, a shower room and an archive area. The west wing accommodates three more bedrooms and a bathroom.

The mature and private garden is as rambling as the house. Extending over half an acre, it has a pond and two barbecue areas but perhaps its most attractive feature is the way in which the two wings of the house shelter a south-facing area to create a sun trap and a room outside which is ideal for entertaining and family time.

The single-storey mews house is located to the side and quite separate from the main house. It is divided into two rooms.

Despite being located on one of Bray's major roads, the property is set well back, so it still retains a rural feel. The couple plan to move to a smaller, more manageable house but one which will also provide sufficient space to accommodate Phil's workspace as well as an attractive kitchen which would accommodate visiting family.

Gordon Lennox, of Sherry FitzGerald, sold the house to the Coulters 21 years ago and is now quoting €1.275m.

Asked if he might consider reducing the asking price below the €1m extra property tax threshold, Mr Lennox said that the current price reflected good value as a number of houses of this size had sold for more than this amount.

The extra property tax only applies to the amount over the €1m and most of those interested in buying €1m-plus homes do not see the property tax as a significant concern, he said.

Sherry FitzGerald 01 2866630

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