Tuesday 27 September 2016

Prom queen on the Bray's seafront for €695k

Bella Vista €695k

Published 11/03/2016 | 02:30

The late Victorian property stands out among its neighbours on Bray's waterfront.
The late Victorian property stands out among its neighbours on Bray's waterfront.
The drawing room has access to the balcony to take in the views.

There is no shortage of venerable 19th-century seaside villas along Bray's waterfront, but amid all that elegance there are one or two real scene-stealers.

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Among them is Bella Vista. Flanked by the more restrained houses of Esplanade Terrace, it's a study in unexpected Victorian flamboyance. The National Inventory of Architectural Heritage describes it as a "memorable, late Victorian eclectic house which makes a unique contribution to the seafront".

And it is certainly memorable, having become a promenade landmark thanks to the tourelle by the first-floor balcony - a turret-shaped lookout window perfect for keeping an eye on shipping, or the neighbours.

Bella Vista was built around 1890 by the two-times Lord Mayor of Dublin Joseph Meade, and it still has many of its original features, including ornate ceiling plaster, marble fireplaces and stained-glass windows.

That first-floor balcony and lookout point are off a drawing room, positioned here to get the best of the eponymous vista. And there's another reception room - a living room - in the corresponding position on the second floor, with the same object in view.

The second floor at present is a self-contained area with two bedrooms and a kitchen as well as the living room. The other three bedrooms in the house are shared between the first floor and return level.

The ground floor has a bay-windowed dining room to the front, beneath the balcony, as well as a family room and kitchen at the back with sliding doors to the rear garden.

The front garden is more verdant. Closely planted with ornamental shrubs and raised beds, it has won two local gardening prizes.

Bella Vista, which has a total of 3,341 sq ft of floor space, is for sale with Sherry FitzGerald Bray (01) 286 6630. The asking price has been reduced from €750,000 to €695,000.

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