Castlemartin, the Co Kildare estate of former billionaire Sir Anthony O'Reilly, where he played host to world figures including Nelson Mandela and Paul Newman, goes on the market today for €30 million-plus.
The sale follows a Commercial Court judgment for €22.6 million in favour of AIB in June, and comes after the disposal of his other Irish homes in Dublin city and Co Cork. The court denied a stay to allow him control the sale of assets, including Castlemartin, which he has described as his "spiritual home" and contains the graves of his parents and two of his grandchildren.
Located outside Kilcullen, the 750 acres of prime limestone land was assembled by the businessman over 40 years, following his purchase of the historic manor house with 240 acres in 1973. The property had been two years on the market and was virtually derelict.
The 28-room, 2,415sq m (26,000sq ft) Georgian house has six reception rooms, all overlooking the Liffey. Up a cantilevered dual staircase, 10 spacious en-suite bedrooms – each still reflecting the taste of the six O’Reilly children – are all made up and ready for use, down to bottled Ballygowan by the washstands.
Among the additions to the house is a long breakfast room, with a glass wall and panoramic river view, and a swimming pool at the old French-style converted coach house where Mandela stayed.