Designed by architect Padraig Smith and built for the late Malachy McDaniel-Stone, Wish Willow is a large country home located close to the M11 in Arklow, Co Wicklow, which was designed to take advantage of its south-facing orientation. It was purchased by the current owners in 2004 and now, with an empty nest ,they are downsizing from the 548sq m (5,899sq ft) pile.
There is an abundance of room in the main house and a further 305sq m (3,283sq ft) in “a courtyard apartment” – at that size, it offers the space for a good-sized family home, but what lies inside currently is actually a mixture of accommodation and entertainment space.
In the main house, three bedrooms (all en suite) lie in a wing to the west and all three have French doors that open out to the manicured gardens. The principal bedroom – which is quite an exceptional split-level suite – is set in a wing on its own to the east, where a pair of bathrooms have a sauna and a hot tub, respectively.
In the apartment area, an extensive games room with a pool table, a full-sized snooker table, an open bar and a snug has hosted many family events. “We have had so much fun there over the years,” says the owner, adding that “from 21st birthdays to barn dances, the rooms have got lots of use”.
Besides these facilities, what will really attract househunters are the gardens. In 2000, more than 20,000 trees were planted here, so the grounds now have a parkland setting with lots of mature shrubs in and around the property itself.
In addition, the 45 acres have an orchard with a variety of fruit trees and vegetable gardens that would allow any residents to be almost self-sufficient. But it will be the equestrian facilities, with 10 looseboxes and 10 further indoor stables along with foaling boxes, a sand area, tack room, office and feed room, which will tick the boxes for those looking to keep a few ponies. The owners used the facilities just for leisure purposes, where they kept a few retired racehorses and a couple of donkeys.
The property is located just 6km from Arklow town, with beaches at Clogga, Brittas Bay and Silver Strand just a short distance away. Wish Willow was listed in 2019 for €2.35 million, and has now been listed again, this time through Savills seeking €2.3 million.