Dublin home with its own Japanese garden on the market for €1.395m
Unique selling point: A house with its own Japanese garden
Ireland has what are acknowledged to be the finest Japanese gardens in Europe - they are located at the National Stud in Tully, Co. Kildare, and were created in the early years of the 20th Century by Colonel William Hall-Walker (later Lord Wavertree), a wealthy Scotsman from a famous brewing family.
The gardens were laid out by Japanese craftsmen, Tassa Eida and his son Minoru.
They pair stayed in Ireland until 1911 when they relocated to London to create another garden.
Tassa Eida died in 1912 on his intended return journey to Japan, and nothing was heard of the family until Brian Eida, Minoru's son, pitched up as a tourist in the late 1980s to admire the work of his grandfather, Tassa.
The Tully property passed to the Irish government in 1943.
A short drive from Woodlane House in Rathmichael, at Powerscourt, near Enniskerry, there's another Japanese garden laid out at around the same time as the one at Tully.
The 8th Viscount and Viscountess Powerscourt located theirs on reclaimed bogland to the south of Triton Lake.
Woodlane House also comes with a Japanese-style garden, albeit not quite on the same scale as those at Tully or Powerscourt, but it is equally lovely; a tranquil spot that has clearly been a labour of love for the owners, with its bridge and pond and exquisite little tea house surrounded by Japanese maples and mature planting.
One can imagine escaping here on a sunny afternoon to enjoy the peace and quiet over a cuppa.
Altogether, Woodlane House has three-quarters of an acre of manicured gardens, which also feature Indian sandstone patios, raised brick planters and meandering paths.
The house itself is just as immaculate as the gardens, with 3,950 sq ft of living space.
Generously proportioned reception rooms on the ground floor include a drawing room, dining room and family sitting room.
The smart kitchen and separate utility room are equipped with some top of the range appliances that are all included in the sale, and the sunroom is the perfect vantage point from which to survey all the hard work that's been done in the garden.
Upstairs, there are four bedrooms, three of which are en-suite, plus a family bathroom. There's also a large floored attic.
Another interesting feature of Woodlane House is the detached guest cottage in the grounds.
With 650 sq ft of living space, two bedrooms, two reception rooms, a kitchenette and a shower room, it's big enough to function as long-term but entirely separate accommodation for elderly parents, or for adult children in need of a place to hole-up and keep costs down while they save for the deposit on a house of their own.
It could, of course, also provide living accommodation for staff or carers, or be used as a home office or studio.
There's a double garage too.
Rathmichael is well-placed for anyone needing to commute into Dublin, around the country or to the airport by car, as it's located just minutes away from the M50 and M11. Public transport is trickier.
The closest schools are Aravon and St. Gerard's.
For keen golfers, there's the choice of the Old Conna and relocated Dun Laoghaire clubs in the area.
Rathmichael is rural enough for people in the area to keep ponies and, although Woodlane House does not have enough land of its own for this, there are options nearby.
Sensible parents will enrol their offspring in classes at the Festina Lente ('Hasten Slowly') riding school nearby, in order to test the extent of their enthusiasm before coughing up for expensive horseflesh of their own.
Woodlane House is on the market for €1.395m, and the agent is Sherry Fitzgerald, (01) 2894386.
Quarry Road, Rathmichael, Co Dublin
Asking price: €1.395m
Agent: Sherry Fitzgerald, (01) 2894386