4 of a kind... Homes with show-stopper Kitchen Islands
6 The Demesne, Adare, Co Limerick €1,850,000
Johnny Grey is probably the best-known kitchen designer in the world, with over 40 years' experience on his CV. (His first client was his mother, for whom he redesigned the family kitchen at the age of 15; his first paid job came a few years later.) Grey was one of the first designers to make the kitchen a sociable space for the family, rather than a room in which the cook of the house (usually the wife and mother) prepared meals in isolation. "Cooking has changed along with our lifestyles," says Grey, "and the home's central gathering place has changed along with it."
Grey describes his kitchens as living spaces in which you cook and the introduction of light and the combining of social and practical functions are his priorities. At 6 The Demesne, located within the grounds of Adare Manor just outside the photogenic village of Adare, Johnny Grey Studios were commissioned by architects, A & D Wejchert Partners, and came up with a design that the agents describe as "a sublime mix of exquisitely crafted curved and angular individual pieces". The open-plan kitchen/family room is a magnificent space, facing south and looking out onto the private landscaped gardens. The planting is by Verney Naylor and features fruit trees, a herb garden and a vegetable patch and extends to 0.6 acre.
No 6 was built by John Sisk & Son and has 445 sqm of living space. Clearly built with entertaining in mind, as evidenced by the extraordinary light-filled atrium and lavish yet elegant reception rooms, it's a house that must have seen many a good party. Upstairs, there are five ensuite bedrooms. Designed according to sustainable principles, the construction used natural renewable materials and evidences high insulation values.
Adare Manor is, of course, a golfer's paradise and No 6 and its neighbours in this exclusive enclave are located only minutes' walk from the Robert Trent Jones Sr designed golf course.
Agent: Sherry FitzGerald (061) 418 000
40a St Fintan's Villas, in Deansgrange, has 154 sqm of living space, four bedrooms and a formal living room, but the big draw is the open-plan kitchen/dining/living space to the rear of the ground floor. The space is light, bright and spacious, with extensive glazing, nine roof windows set in high-pitched ceilings and adjustable track lighting. The fully fitted kitchen has a range of high-gloss floor and eye-level wall units and a slick centre island, all with polished black granite counter tops. Included in the sale is a slew of kitchen appliances including an American-style fridge freezer, and there's a separate utility room.
Agent: Quillsen (01) 280 1719
Located on the entrance level of 30 Lansdowne Road in the heart of Dublin 4, rather than relegated to the basement, this magnificent bespoke handmade kitchen has wide plank, white-oiled oak floorboards and is decorated in an on-trend grey palette. The central island is topped with reconstituted stone and, with light streaming in from tall windows, a white marble fireplace and a sparkling modern chandelier, it's the stuff that kitchen dreams are made of. Plus, the location means that you'll never be short of company, with plenty of room to heat up the post-game pizzas.
Agent: Sherry FitzGerald (01) 269 8888
New to the market, 128 Tritonville Road is a two-storey, over-basement house, boasting views of the Aviva Stadium, that has had a slick top-to-toe refurbishment. The jewel in its crown is the spacious kitchen/breakfast extension (6.4m x 5.5m) with its enormous central island with stone work surface, built-in wine fridge, under-counter stainless steel sink unit and integrated Siemens dishwasher. Plenty of other top-of-the-range appliances are included, while upstairs there are elegant reception rooms and four bedrooms. Off-street parking is a plus, as is the 3km walk that brings you directly to St Stephen's Green.
Agent: Lisney (01) 662 4511