Edwardian elegance available in Limerick

Houses of this type of grandeur and location are rare on the market in Limerick, writes Trish Dromey.

NUMBER 5 Ardara Terrace on the Ennis Road has the space, the centrality, the sought-after address and the Edwardian-style grandeur to attract viewings from emigrants who came home to Limerick for Christmas with thoughts of moving back permanently.

Auctioneer Pat Durkan says he has already had interest from Limerick people living in the UK and the US and has a New Year booking with a family planning to return from Dubai.

The-three storey 2,500 square foot property is guiding at €615,000. According to Mr Durkan, it is quite rare to the market on the Ennis Road which he says has maintained its status as Limerick’s foremost residential area.

Because it was built in 1925, No 5 is technically not Edwardian — but it has all the features and the flavour of the architectural style used in the construction of large houses for the middle classes in this part of the city at the turn of the 20th century. It’s one of two houses which were added on to a terrace of four properties which had been built around 1900.

Features in the gable-fronted property include a red-brick, three-sided bay window, a round-headed porch opening, red-brick pilasters, and a circular oculus window, which was a very popular feature in Edwardian architecture.

The National Inventory of Architectural Heritage, on buildingsofireland.ie, describes it as an attractive property which, with its decorative facade treatment and intact details, “adds to the variety of the terrace and contributes to the historic streetscape”.

When the current owner bought the property in 2002, it still had many original features, but needed work to make it 21st century comfortable.

“It was quite chintzy, the bathrooms were avocado, and the floors were a combination of carpet and laminate,” says the lady of the house. Renovations took five months and included rewiring, re-plumbing and installing gas heating. The majority of the original single-glazed sash windows had survived and these were restored, while two modern ones were replaced with sash windows.

“Underneath 80 years of paint, we discovered a lovely pitch pine staircase which we restored,’’ says the owner, who stripped the doors to match and put down pine flooring in most of the rooms.

Pride of place in the front drawing room goes to the black and red flecked original marble fireplace. The room has 9 ft high ceilings with restored cornicing and dado rails, and a rounded archway leading through to a dining room with French doors at the rear.

The kitchen/dining room at the rear has tiled flooring, hand-painted cream units with granite counter tops, and an oak-topped island unit. There’s also a double Smeg cooker which fitted into the original chimney space. During renovations the owners put in a small utility room and found space for a WC off the hallway.

On the first floor, two bedrooms have been turned into a large master bedroom which stretched from front to rear and has been decorated in Laura Ashley toile de jouy wallpaper. It has a dressing area with fitted wardrobes, a shoe closet and an en suite.

On the stairs return, there’s a bathroom with an antique-style, claw-legged bath as well as a double bedroom. The upper floor has a shower room and three pine floored bedrooms — including a small one which has a circular window, and which could be used as a study.

Like most of the other three-storey period residences on Ennis Road, this house has long lawned gardens at both back and front. At the bottom of the back garden there’s a garage which is accessed from a private laneway at the rear.

Mr Durkan says the property, situated amidst leafy surrounds, within minutes of the city centre, is a haven of tranquility close to schools, riverside walks, the local tennis club, and Thomond Park.

Recent sales in the area include that of No 2 Ardara Terrace which is recorded as having sold for €735,000 in October 2017.

One of the original four houses built in 1900, that property came on the market with a guide of €730,000, after a complete refurbishment by owners who bought it for €600,000 in 2014.

VERDICT:

Spacious Edwardian or almost-Edwardian properties like this one don’t seem to come on the market too often in this part of Limerick. Only two sales above €600,000 were recorded on the Ennis Road last year, including that of No 2.

Ennis Road, Limerick

€615,000

Size: 236 sq m (2,547 sq ft)

Bedrooms: 4/5

Bathrooms: 4

BER: D2

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