Make a move to Irishtown – the affordable side of Dublin 4

This city village has parks and easy access to Grand Canal Dock and Sandymount seafront

Irishtown, Dublin 4.  Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Irishtown, Dublin 4. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

 

What’s so good about it?

Few inner-city neighbourhoods have seen the dramatic transformation that Ringsend has in recent times. Irishtown has benefited from the myriad developments within its nearest neighbour, but has still somehow held onto its own long-standing residential charm and community.

With Ringsend and Sandymount on its fringes, Irishtown is a relatively affordable slice of Dublin 4. Famously, Colin Farrell bought a cottage in Irishtown at the height of his fame, and regularly retreats there when at home. Overlooking Dublin Bay, Irishtown’s housing stock is made up largely of early 19th-century houses and mid-century corporation flats. Sean Moore Park, Sean O’Casey Park and Irishtown Nature Park provide great walks for locals. Sandymount Strand is just on the doorstep. The Grand Canal Dock is nearby for tech workers, and the influx of moneyed new denizens has resulted in an explosion of cafes and gastropubs in the area.

What’s not so good?

Mace, Centra and Tesco Metro serve Irishtown well, but a big supermarket is the one amenity that is lacking in Irishtown. If you want to do a big shop, you’ll need to go to the Tesco Superstore in the Merrion Shopping Centre, or the Aldi and Lidl in East Wall. Irishtown can also be pretty quiet on the weekend, but for some, that can be a good thing.

Where and what to buy?

As one might expect during a global pandemic, properties to buy – and to let – are scant on the ground right now. Currently on the market, however, is 66 Irishtown Road (€725,000, via Bergins), a three-bed, two-bath terraced house with over 120sq m of living space. The property retains its original charm and plenty of period features, but has been thoroughly modernised.

Elsewhere in Irishtown, 9 The Bottleworks (€395,000, via Just-Property) is a two-bed, two-bath apartment in a popular gated development. The apartment has been upgraded with air-conditioning, patio awning, under-floor heating and a kitchen sink disposal unit.

Irishtown, Dublin 4. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times
Irishtown, Dublin 4. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Where and what to rent?

A two-bedroom house on Aikenhead Terrace recently let for €2,000 per month, and similar-sized apartments can command every bit as hefty a price tag in the area. One-bedroom apartments can be rented in the area for about €1,500-€1,700.

Where to eat and drink?

A caveat, to begin with: given the current climate, these eateries and bars are closed until further notice. When normal service resumes, head to the family-run Merry Cobbler (78-82 Irishtown Road), a warm pub with great craft beers and a charming decor. The Vintage Inn, in the heart of the village at 74 Irishtown Road, has a fantastic reputation for food (the chowder is a thing of wonderment). The Irishtown House (60 Irishtown Road) is a brilliant “real” Dublin pub, and the perfect spot for a low-key pint and some sports.

Takeaways Canton House (2 Bath Street) and Iannelli’s (6 Bath Street) are local institutions while, edging towards Ringsend, The Yacht (8 Thorncastle Street), the Oarsman (8-10 Bridge Street) and Lin’s Palace (20 Bridge Street) are also worthy of mention.

St Brendan’s Cottages, Irishtown, Dublin 4. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times
St Brendan’s Cottages, Irishtown, Dublin 4. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Who lives there?

Generally speaking, Irishtown has long been a settled neighbourhood, but has seen several younger professionals move there. MyHome.ie’s research puts the age breakdown as follows: 16 per cent are under 16; 34 per cent are in the 16-34 age category; 22 per cent are aged between 35 and 49; 16 per cent fall into the 50-64 bracket, and 12 per cent of locals are over 65. Almost 30 per cent of Irishtown locals are lone dwellers.

Good for families?

About 23 per cent of Irishtown’s population is made up of couples with children. Local kids choose from a few primary schools in the area: St Patrick’s Boys’ School and St Patrick’s Girls’ School (both Catholic), Shellybanks Educate Together (multidenominational, mixed) Star of the Sea (Catholic, boys) and St Matthew’s (Church of Ireland, mixed). Ringsend College on Cambridge Road is a multidenominational secondary school and further education college.

Getting there and getting around

Irishtown Village is about 10 minutes’ walk to Barrow Street and Grand Canal, and a 30-minute walk to St Stephens Green. Dublin Airport is very accessible via the East Link toll bridge and the Dublin Port Tunnel, with travel time to the airport around 20 minutes outside of rush hour. The 1 and 47 Dublin Bus routes are regular, while the Dart at Lansdowne Road is also nearby.

Irishtown Park in Dublin 4. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times
Irishtown Park in Dublin 4. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

What do locals say?

“I grew up in the neighbouring village of Sandymount and so knew Irishtown well before I bought my apartment here in 2005. My parents still live there so the proximity to them is a bonus.

“For me Irishtown and Ringsend has everything I need: shops, chemists, pubs, gyms, library and a great chipper. I live right beside Ringsend Park, which has public tennis courts, a basketball court, playing pitches and two playgrounds. Sandymount Strand is a 10-minute walk away and it takes me 25 minutes to walk along the canal to work in the city centre.

“The area has changed a lot in the 15 years since I’ve lived here. The influx of the big tech companies means a lot of locals have been priced out of the area. Despite that, Irishtown still maintains its old Dublin village charm. People still say hello to you on the street and the local Tidy Towns members are active keeping the place looking clean and bright with lots of flowers dotted about.” – Niamh Kennedy, underwriter

Do you live in Rathfarnham? If so please tell us what it’s like to live there. Do you have a favourite place or a pet peeve in the neighbourhood? Email homeanddesign@irishtimes.com

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