Wicklow estate sold to US buyer

 

Ireland’s most expensive country property – Humewood Castle estate in Co Wicklow – has been sold to an unknown overseas buyer for a sum believed to be in the region of €8 million.

The price is the highest paid for any residential property in Ireland since the crash, but still represents a drop of €17 million since the property was last sold just six years ago.

It is understood the buyer is American.

The house had been marketed internationally by agents Sherry FitzGerald and Christie’s International Real Estate.

David Ashmore of Sherry FitzGerald in Dublin confirmed the sale to a “buyer who is based outside of Ireland” but, citing client confidentiality, could not confirm other details except that the new owner “intends to undertake a conservation-based restoration of the estate.”

Mr Ashmore said the sale “mirrors the noticeable improvement in the prime residential market” in Ireland.

Demand for homes in the €2 million plus price bracket was driven by “wealthy Irish people” and overseas clients, especially in “the United States, Canada, Holland, the UK, China and Russia”, who were “not just from the Irish diaspora”.

Previous buyer

The Humewood estate, on 427 acres in the village of Kiltegan, last changed hands in 2006 when it was bought by Galway developer John Lally’s company, Lalco.

Plans for a luxury golf resort, costing €250 million, collapsed along with Mr Lally’s business, and the estate has been sold on the instructions of the National Asset Management Agency.

The main residence is a Downton Abbey-style mansion with 3,530sq m (38,000sq ft) of accommodation – equivalent to 25 standard three-bed semis – and the front door is sheltered by a vaulted porte-cochère (carriage-porch).

It is surrounded by private woods and lakes, with six houses for staff.