Period home with Spanish flavour in Dún Laoghaire for €795,000

Designer and textile consultant Carmen Hijosa is moving to Barcelona to focus on her business

44 Mulgrave Street, Dún Laoghaire, Co Dublin
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Address: 44 Mulgrave Street, Dun Laoghaire, Co Dublin
Price: €795,000
Agent: Lisney
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For more than 30 years, 44 Mulgrave Street, Dún Laoghaire, Co Dublin, has been the home of designer and entrepreneur Dr Carmen Hijosa. A single-storey, double-fronted period house from the 1840s with a front door painted sage green, she remembers its dark blue walls and dark blue carpets when she bought it, “but I knew it was the home I needed at the time, and it felt like home”, she says with a smile, sitting in the elegant and airy front drawingroom.

Co-founder of Chesneau Leather Goods in Kilkenny in 1977 and a director of design at the company for 15 years, she then worked as a textile consultant for the World Bank who asked her to consult on the Philippine leather industry. In 2013 she founded Ananas Anam, having developed a process for turning pineapple leaves into a soft, durable and versatile natural material and alternative to leather called Pinatex for which she was named as a finalist for the European Inventor Award 2021.

The three-bedroom house covers 116sm (1,250 sq ft) and is heated by gas. Painted white throughout, there are four high-ceilinged rooms off the long entrance hall, the first of which is a drawingroom with original fireplace, the other a workroom (formerly the third bedroom). Both are carpeted with handwoven Panama grass giving the whole area a feeling of light and spaciousness.

Entrance hall

Farther down the hall, there is a bedroom on either side, and both of these overlook internal courtyards. Old windows have been replaced with double-glazed timber sash windows which conserve heat, though the Ber is G.


There is a small, well-appointed bathroom on the right before the spacious red tiled kitchen/breakfastroom which runs the width of the house and is fitted with solid wood units. There is a large utility room at one side of the kitchen and a light-filled sunroom extension at the other, both of which open to the garden.

This is one of the highlights of the property, at 19m (62ft) long, including a paved patio. It is planted with roses, cherry, apple and plum trees and mature sycamores. Some other similar houses on the street have added an extra storey to create more space, so there is certainly room for expansion, subject to planning permission.

Garden with patio
Sunroom opening to garden
Kitchen leading to sunroom

Hijosa is moving back to her native Spain and to Barcelona, where the research and development plant for her Pinatex fibre is based and from where the material is exported. “It means we will be right where I need to be, at the beginning and end of the product, and there is a lot of work to be done. We started from zero in the mid 1990s with no supply chain and today we can produce five tonnes of fibre a month from the Philippines and more.

“I am sad to be leaving this house which has always been a warm, open and cosy place and five minutes from the sea which I love,” says Hijosa. “But my work is not here and Catalunya, which still has very strong textile innovation technology, is where I need to be now.”

No 44 Mulgrave Street, Dún Laoghaire is for sale through Lisney with an asking price of €795,000.

Deirdre McQuillan

Deirdre McQuillan

Deirdre McQuillan is Irish Times Fashion Editor, a freelance feature writer and an author