O'Farrell ties up sale of D4 home


AROUND THE BLOCK:BUSINESSMAN Niall O’Farrell, who owns the Black Tie chain of dress hire shops, has finally found a buyer for his Ballsbridge home – three years after putting it on the market and at well under half the original asking price.

O’Farrell, who recently confirmed his departure from the popular RTÉ Dragon’s Den programme, originally sought €14 million for the seven-bedroom house on Shrewsbury Road in the summer of 2009, but with the property collapse rapidly gathering pace at that stage there was little chance of a sale, never mind the knockout price.

More recently, Colliers had been quoting €8 million for the four-storey, 863sq m (9,290sq ft) house. However, the agents were not commenting yesterday on the price achieved, but it is understood to have been well in excess of €5 million.

This time last year, former AIB chairman and attorney general Dermot Gleeson, also sold his home at 8 Shrewsbury Road for more than €5 million.

About 12 years ago, O’Farrell and his next door neighbour, developer Sean Dunne, built their two homes in the grandiose style of their Victorian and Edwardian neighbourhood. Each house was built on less than half an acre, comparatively small sites for the road where many of the 22 houses have an acre or more of grounds.

The highlights of O’Farrell’s house, Thorndene, include a grand staircase modelled on the one in Powerscourt Townhouse in the city centre, a 50-foot basement swimming pool, jacuzzi and cinema, elaborate plasterwork and maple and oak floors running through two grand reception rooms.

A huge kitchen is floored in travertine marble, while the enormous study features an antique timber floor shipped from Provence.

Meanwhile, in Bunclody, Co Wexford, the “Sold” sign has finally gone up at Ravenswood. The 25-acre property was the former home of singer-songwriter Gilbert O’Sullivan and had started with an asking price of €2.25 million in 2010. Earlier this year it was asking €1.275 million through agents Colliers. It’s understood that two overseas buyers competed for the property and the final selling price came in close to €1.25 million.