The late carpet seller Des Kelly's country mansion with huge indoor swimming pool goes up for sale
Des Kelly was right at home in two very different houses
Des "the carpet man" Kelly, who soft-furnished the homes of thousands of Dubliners for a generation, left an estate worth €13m behind him when he passed on 18 months ago at the age of 75. But in his later years the self-made businessman from inner city Dublin's Summerhill split his downtime between two very different houses.
His main residence was this magnificent 10,000 sq ft mansion in Co Meath with stables, a huge indoor swimming pool, tennis courts, saunas, jacuzzis, a private gym, seven bedrooms and seven bathrooms. This was where he lived with his wife Youlanda and where he brought up his eight children and played with his grandchildren. Piercetown House in Dunboyne, Co Meath is now for sale with an asking price of €1.25m.
There was also Mr Kelly's second home - a 60-bed house on North Brunswick Street in Dublin 7. This is the Morning Star Hostel for homeless men, where the founder of Des Kelly Carpets and Des Kelly Interiors would go a few times each week to "pitch in". The privately devoted Christian swept floors, cooked dinners, made beds and generally helped out as part of a voluntary crew work ing daily without pay to accommodate and feed more than 60 of Dublin's homeless men every night. They have done so at the Legion of Mary-run hostel since the 1920s and saved numerous lives in the process.
Outside his circle of close friends Mr Kelly seldom spoke of his volunteer work except on one rare occasion when interviewed on Spirit FM: "It's just a great place to be and you are giving something back." The Bohemians FC sponsoring businessman who employed over 100 through some of the worst recession years, left €71,425 in his will to the Morning Star and its sister hostel the Regina Coeli.
Piercetown House was designed by Mr Kelly and his wife Youlanda in the early 1980s on four acres with landscaped gardens, a paddock to the front, tennis court, nine horse stalls and tack room, the swimming pool leisure centre with two saunas and a separate mews house.
There's a grand arched entrance hall with a feature timber staircase and four main reception rooms; a kitchen/dining area; a sunroom; a games room, and a gym as well as a 1,000 sq ft mews house.
Piercetown has remote-controlled electric gates, a CCTV security system an oil-fired central heating. The kitchen is traditional in style and comes with a Rangemaster cooker, an island unit with granite worktop and double doors which lead through to the sun room - and its double doors lead to the courtyard. It seems the carpet man preferred high-quality timber parquet flooring downstairs along with polished solid timber floors in most of the reception rooms.
These include the living room with its ornate neoclassical marble chimney piece, a formal dining room and a sitting room, each with timber floors and marble chimney pieces. Upstairs, however, the bedrooms are richly carpeted. They come with ensuites and fitted wardrobes and one has a Jacuzzi. Above this floor is the American-style loft with a games room and a home gym. The heated pool spans a substantial 72 sq m with a Jacuzzi and two sauna rooms.
There's a very large green house and tennis courts. It's close to Ratoath and Dunboyne villages, Fairyhouse Race Course, Tattersalls and Rathbeggan Lakes. Dublin city is accessed via the nearby Pace railway station and the Dublin Airport is a 15-minute drive away.
Carpets, of course, are included.
Dunboyne, Co Meath
Asking price: €1.25m
Agent: Wyse (01) 568 8900