Period home near K Club
There is a general expectation that many of the large family homes around the Co Kildare village of Straffan will soar in value once the Ryder Cup is staged at the local K Club in 2005.
Even as things stand, houses going for sale in the area generally attract a premium because of its largely unspoiled rural setting.
For that reason alone there is likely to be strong interest in Clownings House, a small period house on 3.3 acres of mature gardens and paddocks, which is expected to make in excess of £650,000 when it goes to auction on September 28th.
Susan Kirk of Coonan estate agents says Clownings is exactly what many Dublin-based families are looking for: a nice period house in a beautiful setting with a few acres to keep ponies, all within 35 minutes' drive of the city. For many, the one-and-a-half mile spin to the K Club will add to the appeal. Lisney is joint selling agent with Coonan.
Clownings House is set in woodlands on a quiet country road, near a mixture of old and modern houses. The few families fortunate enough to have got planning permission to build stylish family homes in recent years have seen values rise almost as fast as in Dublin.
Two miles away, a 1950s bungalow on one acre of gardens was sold by Coonan in July for over £550,000.
Clownings is a two-storey, 240-year-old house with an old coach-house that was integrated some years ago. The main house is in generally good order, having been rewired in 1986 and re-roofed 10 years later.
The present owners have restored many of the original features in keeping with the original design. The furnishings and fit-out have a distinct Scottish flavour to them, reflecting the heritage of the current owners who have lived there since 1985.
The livingroom and diningroom in particular have an old-world charm about them, accentuated by the polished wooden floors and original fireplaces. Both rooms have broad bay windows overlooking the mature gardens.
A comfortable study/TV room at the rear of the house is particularly useful on cold winter nights. The kitchen and utility room are perfectly adequate and there is also a back porch with fitted shelving leading out to a gravelled rear yard.
Upstairs there are five bedrooms, the largest of them with an en suite bathroom. The coach-house was converted into a staff flat some years ago but is in need of refurbishment.
The grounds of Clownings are particularly charming, with a lovely old orchard and a great mixture of oak, beech, sycamore and ash. There are 3.3 acres of gardens and paddocks, and a lovely old yard with four loose boxes, a hay barn and two pony stables, making the place ideal for a family keeping ponies or horses.
It will also appeal to those who like the peace of the countryside or the camaraderie of the K Club.