Suburban €1.4m home in leafy Rathmines
Nestled in the leafy suburb of Dublin 6, the city centre is still within easy reach
A confident Edwardian era newspaper ad for the 1907-built Cowper Gardens scheme in Rathmines - now in thoroughly urbane D6 estate - but back then a fresh countryside idyll, reads: "On the outskirts of Dublin, in country surroundings, viewing the Dublin mountains with the new Golf Links nearby... by train or tram you can reach central Dublin in a few minutes."
The advert describes Cowper homes as, "Villas of attractive architecture, with the modern fittings which constitute the desirability of a home, have been built on this salubrious site."
Aside from it being swallowed up by the fast expanding city in the last 108 years, the selling points for Victorian and Edwardian Cowper haven't changed, with Luas and bus providing the rapid city centre acccess instead of train and tram.
The Milltown Golf course is still going strong and the nearby Dodder Linear Park can give the feel of a country riverside walk.
Cowper may nominally be in Rathmines but, for all intents and purposes, it's leafiest Dublin 6, a world away from the hitherto ungentrified pockets of flatland off the Upper and Lower Rathmines Roads as they lead towards the city centre.
Located two miles from St. Stephen's Green, its main artery is Cowper Road - identified as the centre point of the 1649 Battle of Rathmines. Today, as in 1907, the battle at Cowper is for homes here by doctors, lawyers and other affluent types who remain attracted by the proximity to town, the strong selection of schools and the fact that just about every amenity that one could want is right there.
Food lovers like it too, for its concentration of speciality food stores, cafes and restaurants covering the panoply of global cuisines, from Little Jerusalem in Rathmines to Michie Sushi and the Butcher Grill in Ranelagh and Bijou in Rathgar. D6ers get to walk home after dinner out and eat somewhere different every week of the year without having to leave the locality.
Within a short walk of Cowper Road are Fothergill's delicatessen and Connolly's fish shop on Upper Rathmines Road, and Morton's on Dunville Avenue, which is also home to the uber-trendy Green Beards juicery and Brechin Watchorn Wine.
There are tennis and golf clubs and gyms close by, so residents can work off any gastronomic over-indulgence. The neighbourhood even has its own football team, Beechwood FC.
Cowper Road is a prestigious address, lined in the main by gracious period houses, some of them detached and rather grand. Most were built between the 1870s and the mid 1930s.
Number 10, a lofty late 19th Century affair, is an attractive red-brick, four floor terraced house with a gabled bay, situated on the south-facing side of the street. There is a railed and pebbled front garden that affords off-street parking for two cars, an important consideration in an area where street parking is at a premium. Purchasers of No. 10 need never get into an undignified scrap with their neighbours over who spotted a space first.
A flight of granite steps with wrought iron railings leads up to the front door, set with modern stained glass. The entrance hall is wood floored and heated by cast iron period-style radiators.
There are some period features in the way of coving and ceiling roses in the house, but it is unclear how many of these are original.
No. 10 is laid out with the principal living space on the garden level, and the bedrooms on the upper levels. There are two formal drawing rooms at hall level. These inter-connecting hall floor rooms are the best in the house. Both have working fireplaces with marble surrounds and slate hearths.
The current owners, who are downsizing and plan to move closer to the sea, bought the property in 2002. Back then, the house was sub-divided into a number of small flats and bedsits and they embarked upon a gutting and refurbishment of the property, bringing it back to the single family home it had once been. They also extended, creating a large open plan kitchen/ dining/ living space at garden level. The extension encroached on the garden, which is now quite compact: a secluded, private town garden with a split-level limestone patio surrounded by elegant bamboos and other smart planting.
The sacrifice of garden space is compensated for by the ease of access via double doors from the dining area, and there is ample room to barbecue and eat outdoors in good weather.
The garden level is effectively one big open plan space, with natural stone floors and under-floor heating. The kitchen area has an Aga and marble-topped central island, and the Liebherr fridge freezer and Fisher and Paykel integrated dishwasher are included in the sale. There are also a good bathroom and a well-organised utility room on this level.
Up on the first floor are two double bedrooms, a single bedroom currently used as a dressing room, and a large family bathroom with good quality fittings and finishes.
The attic space has been converted into further living space, currently arranged as a bedroom but which would make a fine home office, and there is a further bathroom here, so the accommodation is spread over four levels and totals 2168 sq. ft.
At the back of the garden is a tin-roofed garage that forms part of the property. Vacant possession of this is not currently available. Neighbouring properties have converted similar structures, accessed from Cowper Mews, into a variety of uses and there may be similar potential here in the future.
10 Cowper Road, Rathmines, Dublin 6
Asking price: €1.4m
Agent: Sherry FitzGerald (01) 4966066