House of the week: Berkeley in deepest southside Cork suburbia

Tommy Barker reports on the house of the week in Berkeley, Beaumont, Cork

Pictures: Denis Minihane

BACK on the market, as the festive holiday season looms, is the strong, wide and spacious family home at 2, Berkeley, a hideaway estate of Tudor-styled 1990s homes, in deepest southside Cork suburbia.

It’s floated in December 2017 at €765,000 by estate agent Timothy Sullivan. He had it quietly offered back in July of this year, at €725,000, and reportdly it was bid to €800,000 before that deal ground to a halt (see similar story, p8).

Time to start the process again, so, and in entirely different sort of weather, when even a strong attribute like its decent-sized and wide back garden with a 400 sq ft Shomera-style garden room won’t hold the gaze or attention for too long.

But, roll on summer ‘18, and a post-purchase shake-up, and it could be a trading up home to last new occupants, for many, many accommodating years.

The back gardens of homes on No 2’s side of so-discrete Berkeley have boundaries to a ‘millionaire’s row’ of top houses along a truly prime stretch of the main Blackrock Road.

Included is one huge house built by businesman Chris Dineen in the mid-2000s, reportedly for a €5m-plus sum. During 2017 the Dineen family also acquired the next door house, Sherwood, the former family home of the late TD Peter and Margaret Barry, which shows on the Price Register at €1.525m.

Yet to sell and linking at the back to Berkeley is Menloe House, guiding €1.8m with Savills, while deals on two individual sites, at over €500,000 each, were done during the year between Blackrock Road and Berkeley.

Directly over the back boundary of No 2 Berkeley is the family home of Conor and MEP Deirdre Clune, who sold off the two sites next to them (planning was unsuccessfully appealed to An Bord Pleanala from within Berkeley).

Market sources say the Clunes, who hope to build anew, also agreed a sale of their own large, modern home here in mid-2017 for well over €1m, but it has yet to appear on the Pride Register.

Panic not, if you’re on the home hunting trail at this time of year, as No 2 Berkeley can be bought for a little over half what some of the more prestigious Cork Blackrock Road homes have been fetching.

There have been at last three €1m-plus house sales along the road this past year, including the rebooted period Mosely Villa at €1.5m, bought by Dan and Linda Kiely who sold their Voxpro company for as much as 100 times the price of their house purchase, an unconfirmed €150 million.

Back to the slightly more real world, then. Berkeley is set in the heart of Beaumont, a cul de sac estate-within-an-estate, reached via Temple Vale, which in turn is in off Beaumont Crescent.

There’s about two dozen of these well-built, 1990s detached homes within, and given their reasonable size when occupied day-on, only a few have been extended in any considerable way.

Any resales in Berkeley are extremely rare too, none othe has come to the open market for years, and No 2 Berkeley is the only Price Register entry since 2010, at €545,000 in 2015, but that reported sum doesn’t reflect full market value at the time, it’s understood.

First in on the left after Temple Vale, and topped with a red tile roof and faced with a faux timber Tudor touch, No 2 Berkeley has had an extension to the back, where the very deep house now has a double gabled rear facade, over its two levels, weighing in as a result at about 2,500 sq ft, with five bedrooms (the large master en suite has a Jacuzzi bath, plus dressing room).

In addition, there’s a detached garden room or Shomera, with a further 400-plus sq ft in the east-facing back garden, as wall as off-street parking, and ground floor rooms include sitting room, kitchen, hall, guest WC, utility and a 31’ by 13’ lounge/breakfast room/sun room, part divided by an arch.

VERDICT: Homes in this Cork Berkeley ‘campus’, within a walk of Blackrock village via Ballintemple, don’t come around too often. This is No 2 second time round after its summer sale blip.

Berkeley, Beaumont, Cork

€765,000

Size: 232 sq m (2,480 sq ft)

Bedrooms: 5

Bathrooms: 4

BER: C3

Best Feature: Extra spacious detached in a quiet Beaumont setting

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