Converted Monkstown stable for €950k following inspired makeover
Cut-stone building given dark and moody treatment by stylist owner Carla Benedetti
- Address: Glandore Mews, Glandore Park. Mounttown Lower, Monkstown
- Price: € 950,000
- Agent: Lisney
A cut-stone stable, once part of Monkstown’s landmark 17-bedroom Glandore House, piqued the interest of stylist and interior designer Carla Benedetti and her partner Trevor Athey, chief roaster at McCabes Coffee, when it came to the market in 2015.
The stable, in need of complete modernisation, was designed by the same architectural practice, Thomas Newenham Deane and Benjamin Woodward, as the main house. Their work notably included the Kildare Street Club, the Museum building at Trinity College Dublin and the Oxford University Museum of Natural History.
The outbuilding had similar Venetian Gothic-revival good looks; a steep pitched roof as well as granite-arched and brick-dressed windows and bare granite internal walls. It also had its own private driveway.
The couple paid €450,000 for it, according to the Property Price Register. “Then we gutted it,” Benedetti says, a project that took 2½ years and included re-roofing the slate-topped property while inside its bare stonewalls were repointed using lime render and the layout rearranged to create a better sense of flow.
There are now no internal doors at entrance level but rather openings leading from one room to another and warmed by underfloor heating throughout. There is industrial-inspired glazing with zinc box surrounds on the large picture windows.
The couple worked with passive-house architectural technologist Des Crabbe but Benedetti’s own imprint is visible throughout, something for which clients pay €500 and upwards for a simple consultation.
She likes a dark and moody palette and has a great eye for mixing styles and pieces she has found online and in markets: “It’s the hunt and the find that I love.”
It starts with the pops of colour, visible in the hall’s glazed tiled flooring, and on the kitchen island. These are an homage to her now-retired father, Sergio Benedetti, a mosaic artist who came to Roscommon town from Italy and ran Mozart’s Studios. One of his works hangs on a hall wall where a full-size, raw steel, custom spiral staircase winds up to the first floor.
The walls are painted in deep earthy shades. The living room chimneybreast is the colour of a grand cru espresso, Hidey-hole, a clay-based paint by Earthborne. Its discovery behind a wall prompted Carla to flip the layout. The open fire has a raised hearthstone that she got from a supplier in Dalkey where, she says, it was “literally under a load of grass in a field”.
Also in the living room Benedetti’s hunter-gatherer credentials are on display in the form of a violet coloured Togo sofa by Ligne Roset that she found on DoneDeal. Packing a punch of saturated colour she paid just €800 for a piece that would sell on a vintage site for at least €2,500. While it was in mint condition when she purchased she had it Chem Dried to ensure that it stayed that way.
A black clay pod-shaped pendant light hanging at the top of the spiral steps is another example. Benedetti had wanted to buy it for several years – having discovered the supplier, Australia-based African Trading Port, on Instagram.
The flooring throughout really sets off the property’s singular look. There’s 100-year old American pine wide-plank boards in the living room, while the pitch pine floorboards upstairs were sourced from Naas-based BG Salvage.
In the kitchen the set-up is very simple allowing the bare stone walls and steel glazing to do much of the design talking. Its oversize island has a beaten-copper top, removed from a discarded table, and shamrock-green coloured, open-tiled shelving below. An old gym horse has been turned into bench seating while a Belfast-style sink inhabits one of its minimal, free-standing, units. A Gothic arch takes you through to the home office.
Upstairs are two double bedrooms. Ceiling heights here extend to more than 3.6m (11.8 ft) with built-in bookcases in the main bedroom soaring up to the roof and accessed via a library ladder. This is where Benedetti keeps her many design books, all colour-coded to give a cool graphic effect.
The walls here are painted Tanner’s Brown by Farrow & Ball and a print of The Surprise, a painting by Claude Marie Dubufe, softens the architectural impact.
The family bathroom has a curved wall, plastered in tadelakt, and can also be accessed from the main bedroom. It features high-end brassware from The Watermark Collection and a natural stone called Black Coffee Antiques supplied by Antica.
The works took more than 2½ years to complete. Now the parents to 2½-year-old daughter Elise want to move out of the city in search of another project before she gets to school-going age, Benedetti says.
George Downer landscaped the garden to be “forest in style”. The property is bounded on one side by mature yew trees, and is “a bit wild”. It’s a simple green and purple colourscape with multiple New Zealand ferns, acers and patio areas.
The double-fronted, two-bedroom house, which now extends to 126sq m (1,356sq ft), is Ber-exempt and is seeking €950,000 through selling agent Lisney.
The big pile, Glandore House, a property extending to 789sq m (8,500sq ft), came to the market in 2018 seeking €1.75 million. While boasting superb period features it was in need of considerable work and sold last December for €980,000, according to the Property Price Register.