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Revamped Victorian villa in Ranelagh comes with Jacuzzi bath and secret wine cellar

Victorian pad in Ranelagh with big Jacuzzi bath and ‘secret’ wine cellar

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The kitchen area and wine cellar which opens from a panel in the floor at 16 Leeson Park Avenue, Ranelagh, Dublin 6

The kitchen area and wine cellar which opens from a panel in the floor at 16 Leeson Park Avenue, Ranelagh, Dublin 6

Surf dude Leszek Zarebinski with his wife, Andrea and son Luke. Photo by Rafal Kostrzewa

Surf dude Leszek Zarebinski with his wife, Andrea and son Luke. Photo by Rafal Kostrzewa

Owners of 16 Leeson Park Avenue

Owners of 16 Leeson Park Avenue

The office at the back of the garden

The office at the back of the garden

Another view of the open-plan living area

Another view of the open-plan living area

One of the double bedrooms

One of the double bedrooms

Another view of the open-plan living area with a view of the garden

Another view of the open-plan living area with a view of the garden

A child's bedroom

A child's bedroom

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The kitchen area and wine cellar which opens from a panel in the floor at 16 Leeson Park Avenue, Ranelagh, Dublin 6

Since Leszek Zarebinski gave up social media over a year ago, he’s found his stress levels have drastically decreased.

I don’t have anxiety anymore. My days are no longer governed by the number of times I pick up my phone. I used to see red ticks and find myself scrolling aimlessly through apps,” says the former tech entrepreneur, originally from Poland.

Zarebinski is selling his luxury home at 16 Leeson Park Avenue, a 1,448 sq ft Victorian villa in Ranelagh with a stylish under floor hatch accessed wine cellar beneath the kitchen and a big Jacuzzi bath, to move to Bali in search of a more chilled existence.

Not only has he closed his social media accounts, but Zarebinski has given up his job in tech and relocated to the dream location with his wife, Andrea, and his two-year-old child, Luke. He now spends his days surfing in the sunshine and hanging out with his family. “I couldn’t be happier to have quit the grind,” he says. “My job was rewarding in some ways, but it does not compare to the time I now get to spend with my kid and being able to surf. I feel so much better for it.”

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Surf dude Leszek Zarebinski with his wife, Andrea and son Luke. Photo by Rafal Kostrzewa

Surf dude Leszek Zarebinski with his wife, Andrea and son Luke. Photo by Rafal Kostrzewa

Surf dude Leszek Zarebinski with his wife, Andrea and son Luke. Photo by Rafal Kostrzewa

His wife Andrea, whom he met in Bali, is now expecting another child in January and the couple have plans to build a boutique hotel in the south of the region which is expected to be finished by the end of next year. As a result, Zarebinski is selling his former city home.
He bought the house in 2009, after moving to Dublin from London. “I wanted to escape the craziness of London at the time,” he says. “I’d spent a summer in Dublin years ago and loved it and had friends living there.”

House prices had crashed and although the house was in bad repair and with an overgrown back garden, he saw its potential. “There had been a family of four living in the house, and they kept chickens in the back garden. It was in sorry state, but I knew it could be fixed. I put my heart and soul and a lot of money into it. I was shaping up to stay in Dublin and I thought then that it would be a home for my future family.”

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One of the double bedrooms

One of the double bedrooms

One of the double bedrooms

Over the course of a year, the interior of the house was gutted, and the inside walls downstairs were knocked down. In addition, the house was extended by 42 sq m.

Now when you walk into the hall there are two double bedrooms on the left-hand side — one of these has an ensuite bathroom that is fitted with black units and makes use of wood and glass. The sink, for instance, is a clear glass rectangular box which stands out from the wall.

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On one side of the house, the original brickwork has been left exposed. This can be seen when you walk into the hall and continue downstairs to what is now an open-plan kitchen/dining/living area with floor-to-ceiling sliding doors that lead onto a patio.

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Another view of the open-plan living area with a view of the garden

Another view of the open-plan living area with a view of the garden

Another view of the open-plan living area with a view of the garden

There’s a comfortable square of couches in the living zone and a modern gas fire built into the wall. The floors are polished oak which Zarebinski had installed to match the existing ones upstairs which were stripped and polished.

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A child's bedroom

A child's bedroom

A child's bedroom

The kitchen units are made from wood and aluminium with black counter tops and cupboards, and a bar-style island with a hob in the middle. Windows overhead mean it’s bright and airy, despite facing northwest. A concealed hatch in the kitchen floor leads to spectacular ‘secret’ wine cellar below.

Greenery offsets the industrial-like aluminium here and a Bonsai tree and a multicoloured large round artwork on the wall give the room an Asian feel.

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Another view of the open-plan living area

Another view of the open-plan living area

Another view of the open-plan living area

This, says Zarebinski, was not intentional. “I love Asia and have spent a lot of time in it over the years. I actually lived in Bangkok for a year so it would make sense that perhaps subconsciously I recreated style elements from my travels.”

This is apparent too, in the main bathroom, also on the ground floor, where the black sink is made in one undulating piece. There’s a sunken bath with jets and both bathrooms have underfloor heating. The kitchen has a utility room off it and opens to the back garden which

Zarebinski describes as ‘another room’. He had the back garden landscaped when he first bought the property and it now has an abundance of mature trees and shrubs, with a concrete path leading through the lawn to an office at the end. The property had planning permission to build a two-bedroom mews at the back of the garden when Zarebinski first bought it. While this has now lapsed, it offers big potential for prospective buyers.

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The office at the back of the garden

The office at the back of the garden

The office at the back of the garden

The existing office has a big window looking out onto the garden and is perfect for remote working. It’s also where Zarebinski stores his surfboard. Despite living in Dublin, he used to regularly travel to Donegal and Sligo to surf when he lived here.
“Surfing is one of the reasons I moved to Ireland in the first place,” he says. “I really loved living in Ireland and particularly in Dublin. I thought I would there for life. But now I surf everyday in Bali and I’m very happy.”


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