Terrace by the Grand Canal with echoes of Ulysses for €1.25m

Four-bed is a couple of doors along from Leopold Bloom’s house on Ontario Terrace

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Address: 3 Ontario Terrace, Ranelagh, D6
Price: €1,250,000
Agent: DNG
View this property on MyHome.ie

Built in the 1840s, Ontario Terrace fronts on to the Grand Canal in Dublin between the bridges at Rathmines and Ranelagh. One of just 14 homes it boasts beautiful views, especially from the upper-floor windows, and is also set on a north-south axis meaning the gardens all get southern sun.

It also comes with literary bragging rights – in James Joyce’s Ulysses, Leopold Bloom and his wife, Molly, lived at number 1, on the corner of Mount Pleasant Avenue Lower, along with their servant, Mary.

Number 3 is a fine family home that has been decorated with verve. The owner’s sister is an artist and helped her with colour selections, and the difference between an artist’s eye and that of an interior decorator means the place fizzes with personality.

It’s a house that can take a lot of colour, opening into a hall painted in spring greens and yellows to mimic a daffodil’s tones. Below the dado rails is Farrow & Ball’s Hound Lemon, from its archive collection. While the pigments have faded slightly because of the sun-soaked aspect it remains as cheery a welcome as that host of golden blooms that wowed Wordsworth.


Step into the interconnecting reception rooms and the walls are covered in an effervescent Bay Coral pink that brings the rooms alive. When the interconnecting doors are opened these rooms are dual aspect, and have matching stone fireplaces, polished timber floors and large six-over-six timber sash windows washing them in light.

The kitchen is down a floor, at garden level, in a contemporary extension that the owner wanted to make feel like an outdoor area. Filled with potted plants, those greens are echoed in the cabinetry, painted a soft Mellow Sage by Crown Paints. A long rooflight cuts into the ceiling to bring light directly onto the dining area, part of the design by architect Kevin Blackwood of Blackwood Associates.

It opens directly to the garden, a gloriously sunny spot covered with artificial grass with golden granite steps leading up to the double garage at the rear. This has vehicular rear access and could, subject to planning, be converted into a mews house or studio space.

Also at garden level, which has underfloor heating throughout, is a playroom where a wide mantel has been picked out in a sunny yellow and the walls are coated in a washed-out version of School Room Green, another F&B colour. The owner added some white paint to lighten the tone. She also turned a door into an internal window so that you can look into the first of the property’s four bedrooms from this room.

Set to the front, it enjoys the use of an adjoining shower room and is also close to the separate entrance under the stone steps up to the front door.

Up on the return is the family bathroom, painted in a vibrant saffron yellow.

As you ascend through the house there are views of the mountains and of the Church of Mary Immaculate Refuge of Sinners church in Rathmines, its beautiful copper dome filling the windows on the stairwell and in the main bedroom. There are two more bedrooms to the front, a double and a single.

Extending to 210sq m (2,260sq ft), with a new roof installed last year, number 3 is set over three floors and is Ber exempt. Agent DNG is seeking €1.25 million.

Alanna Gallagher

Alanna Gallagher

Alanna Gallagher is a contributor to The Irish Times specialising in property and interiors