Seventeen years ago when Mark and Gail Doherty walked through the doors of 511 South Circular Road they “fell in love with it straight away”. But back then the three-storey house told a different tale to the house that has just been put on the market through estate agent Daphne Kaye & Associates.
“It was all in bedsits,” recalls hairdresser Mark, who operates the Sitstil salon on the corner of Drury Street and Fade Street. The top floor was “a bedsit with a kitchen”, while “the ground floor had seven people living there”.
With the help of architect Desmond Byrne of Lotts Architecture and Urbanism, the couple, who had a fair idea of what they wanted, came up with a design to extend and transform their Victorian home. With four children aged one to six in tow, they moved out of the property – which lies close to where the South Circular Road bends at the site of the new National Children’s Hospital behind St James’s – for nine months.
The result is a three-bedroom home with 172sq m (1,851sq ft) and a further 12sq m in a converted attic with a bathroom, that really makes the most of its south-facing rear garden, and all the light that it brings into the new extension. A wall of concertina glass doors now opens up at garden level creating a seamless divide between the living space and outdoor dining area.
“It is lovely to sit out the back as you can see right through to the bay window in the front of the house,” says Doherty, adding “and though the South Circular runs to the front, it’s like a little oasis out the back as you can’t hear the traffic.”
Despite the house having been in flats all its period features, such as coving, fireplaces, ceiling roses and floors, are intact.
The principal bedroom takes up the entire front of the house on the first floor, and with a mixture of double and triple glazed windows throughout there is little sound from outside traffic.
A good indication to the level of insulation added when the house was undergoing renovations is the Ber is now a C2, which is high considering the property still retains open fireplaces.
The rear garden is a delight and though not large its southerly aspect – and thriving pear trees, which keep the neighbours stocked with autumnal bounties of fruit – is a real selling point of the house. It throws light into the streamlined kitchen – which has a stove for cosy winter suppers – and also benefits from underfloor heating.
In turnkey condition, Number 511 also has an entrance to the garden from Mountshannon Road. As the family have one child just finished primary school and another who has completed the Leaving Cert, they are moving to Blackrock to be closer to family and the sea, and have placed their home on the market seeking €885,000.