A 'rare opportunity' in Ardmore
U-shaped six-bed home makes the most of bay views
The dramatic cliff walks at Ardmore, Co Waterford take in the sea views and wildlife on a path that follows around Ardmore Head and Ram Head, passing a shipwreck known as Samson's Wreck.
This is the crane ship that was driven ashore during a storm in December 1987, while being towed from Liverpool to Malta. The tow snapped and could not be reconnected because of the gale. The two crew members were rescued but the wreck remains, catching walkers completely by surprise as they come upon the spectacle.
Don't put your camera away just yet because further along the track there is a single-storey, one room lookout post built by the government in 1940 and used during World War II to log all ships and aircraft that passed by. It had a telephone connection to Ardmore post office to warn of any imminent danger.
It wasn't the only warning system on this coastline though, because perched out on the headland is another, older rectangular tower built during the Napoleonic wars when there was a threat of the French invading Ireland in the early 1800s.
Thankfully, now we have no invaders to fear (apart from the odd Brit or two who feel it's time to relocate to the south-east of Ireland).
The owners of Ballinamona at Whiting Bay in Ardmore knew they were on to a good thing when they built on this scenic site in 2006.
At the time they must have been delighted with the views over the bay and beyond, but it has since been announced that there will be no more planning permission given for additional houses on this stretch of the road. So for a change, the old estate agent adage 'a rare opportunity' happens to be true in this case.
The six-bed home was designed in a U-shape, with glass going right around the house to make the most of the views, and an enclosed deck sitting in the centre of the building. So often in Ireland we build patios with great intentions of eating al fresco at every given opportunity, but a few years later, the patio is covered in dirt and leaves and only enjoyed by the local stray cat.
This is one patio that won't end up being neglected though because it jumps out at you at every turn, with most rooms in the house looking out on to it.
With a floor space of 3,100 sq ft, the accommodation is all on one level. The main living areas are all open-plan, ending with a double-height gable window in the kitchen/dining room. The kitchen has a breakfast bar, fitted Shaker-style units, an American fridge and a double range cooker.
There is a utility room off the kitchen with plenty of fitted units and plumbing for a washing machine and dryer. The long, double-aspect living room has vaulted ceilings and a central chimney breast with a cast-iron solid-fuel stove.
On the other side of the house are six bedrooms, two of which are ensuite. The master bedroom also has a walk-in wardrobe and there is a very generous hot press. The corridors around the house are wide and bright, and most have small seating areas.
With a BER rating of C1, the house has solar panels that supply free hot water from April to October. There is underfloor heating that is powered by a cost-effective and sustainable wood pellet boiler and a 500 litre water tank.
Outside, there is a 400 sq ft garage and one-third of an acre of well-maintained lawns and gardens. The property is behind a secure gate and a tarmacadam driveway leads up to the front of the house. Whiting Bay is a short stroll away and there is access to Goat Island Beach directly across the road.
Down the road is the renowned Cliff House Hotel. The five-star hotel was named by Condé Nast Traveller magazine as one of the top 10 most beautiful cliff-top hotels in the world. All of the rooms face the sea and have balconies or terraces.
Executive chef Martijn Kajuiter runs the Michel-starred kitchen at House Restaurant in the hotel and the Well Spa has day packages on offer.
Ardmore is a small village in Waterford that is a 10 minute drive from Youghal and about 20 minutes from Dungarvan. A car journey to Dublin would take just over two and a half hours.
The village itself has a foodstore, pharmacy, a chipper and a handful of pubs. The White Horses Restaurant in the town is run by three sisters, Christine Power and Geraldine and Angela Flavin, and locals and visitors are always quick to give it a rave review.
Whiting Bay, Ardmore, Co Waterford
Asking price: €625,000
Agent: Denise Radley Auctioneers, Dungarvan (058) 42168