Grand dame restored in Malahide village on sale for €1.95m

Five-bed underwent transformation 40 years ago from a rundown state to stunning family home

  • Address: 3 Windsor Terrace, Malahide, Co Dublin
  • Price: € 1,950,000
  • Agent: Sherry FitzGerald
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Handsome, welcoming and every inch a comfortable family home, it’s hard to imagine the house that vendors Eddie and Teri McDonnell describe buying for €14,500 in 1975. Number 3 Windsor Terrace’s two storeys over basement were “in rat order”, Teri remembers cheerfully, “the garden totally overrun with sycamores right up to the back door. Water came from a pump in the kitchen, the toilet was to the side and the bath was downstairs in the middle of a tiled floor. There were serving bells and a dumb waiter.”

There was also dry rot, wet rot and a roof in need of repair. With the first two of six children to care for, the McDonnells got a builder to do the “heavy work”, did the rest themselves, and have continued to make changes during 43 years of residence.

In 2004, they added a horse-shoe shaped sunroom to the hall floor kitchen – the latter had been earlier “brought up” from the basement. The sunroom extends over the patio, into the garden, and has a delightful, eyrie-like feel. A family bathroom and en suite in the main bedroom were the other main structural changes.

Altogether, the McDonnells created 331sq m (3,563sq ft) of relaxed living space and, Teri assures, “used every bit of it”. Family reared, they are downsizing to a house they are building to the rear of number 3. Even with this site taken the garden remains a considerable size, as well as a thriving tribute to Teri’s horticultural skills. A carefully built, separating limestone wall matches the existing walls.

Windsor Terrace is yards from Malahide Village, a location that was strategic and convenient even when the terrace’s six houses were built by one Thomas Bradley in 1855. Each had an estimated value of £600 on May 1st 1956 – a far cry from the €1.85 million paid for number 2 in 2016 and the €1.6 million paid for number 6 in 2015. Agent Sherry FitzGerald is asking €1.95 million for 3 Windsor Terrace.

The Windsor Terrace houses are protected structures and the McDonnells have carefully preserved the original features. The formal, front-facing drawingroom has a picture rail on dramatic, petrol blue walls, an original white marble fireplace and a couple of long, sash windows. The gracious, rear diningroom overlooks the garden, has a black marble fireplace and wine-coloured walls. Plaster ceiling roses in both rooms and in the hallway are replicas the McDonnells had made.

The main, front-facing bedroom has sash windows with working shutters, an en suite with free-standing bath and the high ceilings found everywhere in the house. The garden level could make a separate apartment, or remain as is with a flagged hallway, play/familyroom, fifth bedroom, enviably spacious study, wine/storage area, utility and door to the rear, sheltered patio.