Dalkey village house for €3.5 million

One of the seven original tower house castles of Dalkey, Tudor House, a three-storey-over-garden-level property, offers the scale and atmosphere of a grand country house in the centre of the village, which is a rare combination


When you Google search Tudor House, a quite spectacular family home in Dalkey, it’s a little disconcerting to find TripAdvisor and other travel sites recommending a B&B in the Dublin suburb. It’s not a B&B – so much for the great information superhighway – though it once was, 10 years ago before it was bought by the current owners for €3 million. They converted the fine detached Victorian house back to a family home.

It’s now for sale for €3.5 million through Sherry FitzGerald whose affiliation with Christie’s International Real Estate is writ large on the brochure – usually a sign that an overseas buyer is seen as a likely purchaser.

The current owners are Danny and Eileen Durkan. Mr Durkan is executive chairman of construction group Durkan in the UK. They now require bigger grounds, and it’s understood they are about to purchase Grattan House on three acres near Enniskerry, Co Wicklow. That house featured on the cover of this supplement in July when it came on the market with a €4 million asking price.

Tudor House is located just off Castle Street in Dalkey village, though at (596sq m) 6,421 sq ft it’s not exactly a typical village house. It’s set well back and passers-by would hardly notice it.

No expense spared
It has an interesting history. It was built by a Dublin surgeon, Dr Richard Parkinson, who bought the land in 1843 and then, to complete the build, bought Wolverton Castle. It was one of the seven original tower house castles of Dalkey and he used the castle’s granite boulders to build his grand and imposing house. In the early 1900s, it was leased to the Portsmouth Naval Academy and used as a preparatory school for boys.

It’s very much a comfortable, definitely luxurious family home now, with no expense spared on the renovation which was a top-to-bottom affair, inside and out, from the new roof down to the Dermot Gavin-landscaped gardens.

It’s larger now than 10 years ago too, thanks to the addition of a Hampton conservatory at the back of the house which functions as a bright sunny informal living room off the grand dining room at the front of the house. That’s on one side of the gracious wide hall.

On the other side of the hall to the front are two rooms, a smaller living room and a large home office where here, as elsewhere throughout the house, Brian Frew is responsible for the smart built-in bespoke cabinetry work.

Downstairs there are two main rooms – an eat-in kitchen fitted out by Design House, with an open fire, window seats, space for a large table and concertina doors opening out onto a decked patio.

The other room is a large family room with a woodburning stove and newly floored with limed oak. There’s also a wine cellar, laundry room, boot room and communications room which controls the house’s sophisticated security and IT system.

The six bedrooms are over two floors and laid out in a way that will instantly appeal to a family, especially one with teenagers who like their own space.

Concealed staircase

At the top of the house, which is accessed by a concealed staircase for added atmosphere, are three double bedrooms with sloped ceilings and small narrow windows.

There’s a shared study area – up here is where some of the children sleep and it’s very much their space – and a family bathroom. It’s easy to imagine that the dorms were up here when the house was a boys’ boarding school.

The larger bedrooms are below off a gracious, bright landing. The main bedroom with its bathroom-sized en suite has two tall windows on two walls, and is richly decorated with heavy curtains and a chandelier which works well with its period fireplace and decorative cornice work. There are two more double bedrooms and a large family bathroom.

The garden of about half an acre is mostly to the front, and there is a sweeping gravelled driveway. At the back and to the side is the Dermot Gavin- designed patio complete with a glass-walled garden room fitted out as a home gym.

The walk-in condition and stylish décor will appeal to buyers house hunting at this level in the market. Tudor House offers the scale and atmosphere of a grand country house in the centre of Dalkey, which is a rare combination.