Revamped Dun Laoghaire semi has huge appeal for young families
7b Woodley Road Dun Laoghaire, Co Dublin
Asking price: €675k
Agent: Sherry FitzGerald, Dun Laoghaire, (01) 284 4422
Artist Wassily Kandinsky said that "colour is a power which directly influences the soul". Although that was way back in 1911, he could have been directing a message towards modern day interior designers and homeowners. The days of magnolia walls and beige curtains were some time back replaced by greys, mushroom and assorted muddied hues - not good for maintaining the soul.
The owners of 7b Woodley Road in Dun Laoghaire have gone with a subtle but bright approach to colour, showing how you don't have to go over the top to brighten your home with primaries. Downstairs the walls in the hall and kitchen are painted in Colourtrend's Old Grey Mare, while Hardwick White from Farrow & Ball was used to give a gentle glow in the living and dining room. These colour choices have allowed them to be more daring with furnishings, like the pink chair in the living room from Buckley's in Sandycove, which was cleaned up and re-upholstered; or the funky high stools in the kitchen from Arnotts, which give a blast of colour to the room. Cushions and throws with 50 shades of blues and mustards bring the living spaces to life and help give a bit of fun and warmth to a standard Dublin semi-d.
This house will have huge appeal for young families for a number of reasons. The open layout downstairs is ideal for small kids running around under a watchful eye. The garden is fully enclosed and large enough to accommodate a trampoline, slide, swings and goalpost, if that is what the young ones wish for. The attic has been converted and would make an ideal space for an au pair. And lastly, the local schools are over the back wall.
New owners will have little to do because the property was completely revamped in 2009. This full renovation included an extension, attic conversion, the installation of triple-glazed windows, and rewiring and replumbing.
The tiled entrance hall leads you into the centre of the house. To the right is the dining room, with wooden flooring and dual aspect windows. This opens out to the kitchen, which is fully fitted with white units and granite worktops. There is a breakfast bar that can comfortably seat two and a door out to the side passage. The other side of the kitchen is being used as a family room and has double doors out to the back garden.
The living room at the front of the house has doors into the kitchen area but could be closed off if you wanted a room away from it all. There is a wood-burning stove with marble surround and ceiling coving in this room. There is also a guest wc on this level.
Upstairs, there are four bedrooms. The master has fitted wardrobes and an en suite shower room. There are another two double rooms, and a single room. The main bathroom has a bath and power shower.
The attic conversion could have many uses, like the aforementioned bedroom for an au pair, or a home office, playroom or even teen gaming room.
The house has gas-fired central heating and is also been fitted with solar panels. This helped it to achieve its B3 BER. The SEAI Guide To Building Energy Rating for Homeowners estimates that a four-bed semi with this rating should have annual running costs of about €1,400 for space and water heating.
While the official address of this 1,862 sq ft home is Dun Laoghaire, it is about a 10-minute drive from the harbour. Cabinteely, on the other hand, is just five minutes away, or a 20-minute walk.
Cabinteely isn't a bad village to have on your doorstep. In recent years it's seen independent businesses open and breathe new life into the once sleepy town. With a choice of restaurants within walking distance for locals, Cabinteely could now rival suburbs like Ranelagh and Rathgar.
Pielow's, a popular restaurant in the village centre, was opened by Colin and Teresa Pielow when they returned to Ireland from Tulbagh Valley in South Africa. The real treat of this restaurant isn't just the great food, but it's also the opportunity to sample some of the Pielows' own wine from their vineyard back in the Cape winelands. Lucinda O'Sullivan rates them highly in her 'Little Black Book'.
"They're what I call real foodies," says O'Sullivan. "They've talked the talk, but they've also walked the walk, having originally had a restaurant and a wine shop in Enniskerry, before moving to Cobh and subsequently to South Africa, where they also still have a vineyard producing delicious wines."
Eating in is also a very good option in this part of Co Dublin. The renowned Caviston's Food Emporium, a mecca for all foodies, is only 10 minutes away from Woodley Road. Originally famed for its seafood, Caviston's now stocks everything you could dream of from wild Silver Hake from Donegal to creamy Taleggio from Bergamo in Italy.
The nearest bus stop to the house is about 300m away with a decent choice of bus routes passing by.
The schools behind the house are Our Lady of Good Counsel Boys' National School and Girls' National School. The only problem with being so close, is the kids will never have a reason to be late in the mornings.
Number 7b Woodley Road in Dun Laoghaire is for sale with a guide price of €675,000 through agents Sherry FitzGerald (01) 2844422.