When these vendors want to go for a swim, they look out the bedroom window to check the tide
Claremoy Cottage, Clooneyogan South Moy, Lahinch, Co Clare €395,000
When the vendors of Claremoy Cottage, a few kilometres outside Lahinch in Co Clare, want to go for a swim, they look out the bedroom window to check the tide.
"You can see whether the tide is in or out," says Nina Forster.
It is one of the joys of Claremoy Cottage, that view out to the sea at Lahinch, over the fields and inland towards the Burren. The couple often ramble over the hill to Lahinch. On the days when they want a longer stretch, they set off for Miltown Malbay, 10km away.
The couple bought Claremoy Cottage from a cousin of Nina's 20 years ago for €250,000 when they returned to Ireland after many years in the UK.
"It was in good condition," she recalls, though over the years, they have changed the decor, upgraded the windows, extended the central heating into the older part of the house and added a stove, as well as spent time planting up the garden.
This charming cottage is surprisingly roomy, and comprises a rose-clad porch which contains a guest loo, a large double-height reception room and a dining room to the rear. Stairs lead up to a single bedroom tucked under the eaves and there is a further ground-floor double bedroom.
The main house sits at an angle to the older renovated part, which is stone clad and linked by a sunroom.
This wing houses the kitchen which is kitted out in country-style units with a Belfast sink and wooden countertops. The family bathroom with claw-footed free-standing bath, and another double bedroom are also on this level.
Upstairs is the master suite, a huge room with a large walk-in wardrobe and en suite bathroom.
The former cow byre has been upgraded, wired and insulated and could, subject to planning permission, be converted into a home office. There are no cows housed there now, though there is a field full of cows next door on a working farm.
The house sits on just under an acre, planted with mainly shrubs and bushes and so, says Nina, low maintenance. The lawn is kept under control with a sit-on mower (which can be negotiated into the purchase price), or the new owners could contemplate converting it to a wildflower lawn. There is a sunny spot to sit and eat al fresco to the rear of the house.
"We literally have the sun all day. You can be sat out the back all day until 5.30pm. The sun then goes over the roof on to the front of the house and you can watch it set over the Cliffs of Moher."
It is, according to Nina, an idyllic spot for children or grandchildren. Lahinch is known for its surfing, and there is a choice of surf schools available for newbies to practise their pop-ups. The Green Room is a favourite with Nina's grandchildren, and hires out wetsuits and boards.
There are Blue Flag beaches nearby at Miltown Malbay, Lahinch and Spanish Point for bucket and spade outings, and flaggy shores to jump off at Clahane.
And of course, Clare has a rich tradition of music with, among others, Kenny's in Lahinch and McDermott's in Doolin (which also serves up a good plate of food), to tune in to the local musicians. The ferry goes daily from Doolin out to the Aran Islands for those who want to speak the 'cupla focail', and enjoy An Tra Mor on Inis Oirr, or the sandy coves on Inis Meain.
The brightly painted village of Ennistymon is just 7km away, and there food-lovers can enjoy Unglert's Bakery, The Cheese Press, chef Niamh Fox's locally sourced meals at Little Fox and Pot Duggan's Eatyard Sundays when the likes of Ross Lewis of Chapter One and Paul Flynn of the Tannery serve up three-course meals at a long table.
The vendors of Claremoy Cottage won't be moving far, but they are of an age to downsize and hope to spend more time abroad each year. The house, says Nina, would suit a family as a full-time home or make a fine holiday home.
Shannon Airport is 40 minutes' drive away and so it would be possible to commute, as many do, to London. Limerick city is just under an hour's drive, while bustling Galway city sits about 100km away.
Era: Early 1900s
Agent: Yourbricks.ie (01) 244 7505
Viewing: By appointment
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