Meet the 7 finalists for 'Home of the Year' as judges gear up to announce winner
Home of the Year culminates tonight with just one winner from seven strong finalists from across the country.
The judges - interior designer Hugh Wallace, architect Declan O'Donnell, and textiles and homewares designer Helen James - chose the final seven from a total of 21 houses.
Tonight's show (8.30pm, RTÉ One) will see the homeowners meet the judges for the first time in Carton House where they'll finally select the overall winning home from an eclectic mix ranging from a home that's an ode to the 1960s to a Victorian terrace home in South Dublin.
Which of the final seven homes gets your vote?
Week 1 – The Extended Cottage
Tom Hayden is a Professor of Zoology and June Kennedy has recently completed her masters in spiritualism. The couple live in their extended cottage in Tipperary.
They first met as teenagers but reconnected nearly 40 years later when June was studying as a mature student and Tom was working as a lecturer. Tom left Dublin to move with June to Tipperary to make their home.
They’ve added to their cottage, extending up so they can take in the spectacular views. Inside, big leather couches, meditation corners, mounted Elk antlers, crosses, candles and trinkets from their travels are all present in their house.
The couple love being here so much they even cancelled their annual trip to the South of France preferring instead to just be at home.
Week 2 – The Split Level Home
Retired couple, Ita Molloy and Andrew Harvey had a holiday cottage on the site in Castletownbere, Co Cork since 1993 but rebuilt on it and then from summer 2014 have had this beautiful home.
They wanted to build something that was eco-friendly and enlisted the help of Ita’s son, Donn Ponnighaus who is an architect, to design and build a passive house.
The interior is warm and cosy and they are surrounded by incredible views of the mountains and sea of West Cork.
Week 3 – The City Mews
Eva Byrne and Gerard Carty live in South Dublin City with their two children, Vita and Oscar. They are both architects and Eva runs www.houseology.ie and specialises in maximising space, light and storage.
Eva and Gerard built this modern mews house in 2003 and added a rooftop extension in 2012. The house is cleverly designed with every millimetre of space exploited to make a functional but elegant family home.
It includes lots of hidden storage and even a secret bedroom. This versatile mews is fully used and enjoyed by all the family – including Bisto, the dog – and whilst it is largely open plan, manages to appear calm and uncluttered.
Week 4 – The Semi-detached Home
Ger Eaton a musician in the band The Carnival Brothers and hairstylist lives with his wife Susann and their two children, Jude and Bowie, in a semi-detached red-brick house in Kildare.
Ger and his wife have a similar taste in fashion and music and both bring that into their home. Ger, in particular, loves to shop around Ireland, and abroad, for original pieces.
They love that each piece in the home has its own story, such as the 1960’s turquoise suite which came from the American Embassy in Dublin.
Week 5 – The Cob House
Feile Butler and Colin Ritchie live in a cob-and-timber-frame home in Co. Sligo. After taking a mud building course in 2005 Feile and Colin set about designing and building their own home.
Feile is an architect and Colin a carpenter so they were able to do the vast majority of the work themselves. The house, completed in 2011, was built from soil excavated on site and over 80% of the other building materials were salvaged.
Week 6 – The Pink House
Sarah Tomkin and her husband live with their four sons in this beach side bungalow in South County Dublin.
The house was originally built in the 1930s with two extensions added on since. This extended family home has a garden that backs out onto the beach.
Art school graduate, Sarah, has a real love of colour, patterns and a natural flare for design. Her design philosophy is simple, nothing should match! The dominant colour in the home is pink, even the exterior of the home is a pale shade of pink.
The house has unusual features like a swing in the middle of the kitchen and a boat in the living room. One of her favourite rooms is the kitchen, as it gets lots of sunshine and is a place where the whole family gathers.
Week 7 – The Victorian Terraced Home
Carla Benedetti lives in a renovated Victorian house in South County Dublin.
Carla is a graphic and interior designer and began the process of renovating this Victorian home in 2010. There is a mix of original with new features throughout the home.
Carla was passionate about respecting her period home while introducing modern architecture and design such as the double height extension at the back of the home.
She favours a darker colour palette in the majority of the home, finding it adds a cosiness to larger spaces.
One of her favourite areas is the downstairs living/dining area, she loves the double doors out to the garden which she designed herself.