Room to improve in Ranelagh for €2.8m

This six-bedroom Victorian in Dublin 6 was renovated about 10 years ago by its current owners, making many welcome changes, but the eclectic colour scheme and the accommodation layout may need rethinking. Development potential in the long rear garden might also justify the price tag


House-hunters looking at number 1 Cambridge Terrace in Ranelagh will certainly need deep pockets – the price is a bullish €2.8 million – but they might also be considering the development potential of the very long garden which has good road frontage along Northbrook Road. The southwesterly garden is 37.8m (124ft) long with a large garage at the end.

The house itself is very similar in style – though smaller – to 1 Leeson Park which sold earlier this year at auction for €1.8 million. That house had a relatively small town garden.

Three other Leeson Park houses have sold recently for well in excess of €2 million. A house much closer to Cambridge Terrace, on Northbrook Road, did break the €2 million price barrier when number 23 sold for €2.05 million this time last year, but it had been renovated to a particularly high and very eye-catching standard.

Restored cornice work
Number 1 Cambridge Terrace is now being sold through Felicity Fox and it was renovated about 10 years ago by its current owners. They now live abroad and so the house has been a corporate rental, most recently to the Brazilian ambassador. It is currently being shown unfurnished, so it’s not in its best light.

When they took on the renovation – a massive job in a Victorian house measuring (344sq m) 3,700sq ft – they made some changes that new owners will appreciate, such as the double-glazed sash windows, cast-iron radiators and sympathetically-restored cornice work, and others that might be modified.

The strong colours throughout the house, walls and floors, will not be to everyone’s taste but that’s easily fixed. What will be more of a challenge is reconfiguring the bedrooms and bathrooms for more practical use.

It’s a six-bedroom house because there is a bedroom down at garden level, next to a full size bathroom, and another at hall level. The four main bedrooms are on the first floor and the large family bathroom is at the top of the house in the return.

What would have been a large bedroom to the front is now the en suite and dressing room to the main bedroom, but rather than seeming a grand arrangement it feels cluttered and a waste of a fine room. Reconfiguring that arrangement will most likely be top of the new owner’s list.

The living accommodation is more traditional in layout and size. There is a large room-sized entrance with a stained glass window, decorative plasterwork and original features such as the brass handrail. The grand living room with a bay window is to the front, the formal dining room to the back and both have marble fireplaces.

Downstairs the family room is to the front and the kitchen to the rear – the dull colours on the walls and the stripped pine woodwork makes the place a little gloomy. There’s also a large utility room and a conservatory opening on to the mature garden.

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