ELL, ‘Árdan’ has done its family proud, has done the family some service and is looking to serve again.
Bought back in 1979 by a relatively large and mobile Irish family who’d travelled widely for work years around Ireland (the dad was with the Department of Education and both parents published books in later years), this place was picked out to provide a sound base for the expensive, university-going years as all seven children moved up the learning curve.
Chosen for its size, sunny aspect, and Cork city views, it was Árdan’s reasonable proximity to the UCC campus, that was the clincher for the academically-inclined family.
Since then it “has been a home for the generations — parents, children, grandchildren and a great-grandchild,” family members warmly appreciate.
Now quite widely scattered, across continents even, they are taking the ‘practical,’ yet unsettling decision to sell Árdan and cut links after 41 years rooted. It follows the passing of both parents, at a good age, within a short time of one another, thankfully in easier, pre-Covid-19 times.
As seven siblings, they’ve had time to wander and meander back down memory lanes, from The Grove in Shanakiel.
They have the strongest memories of crossing the Shakey Bridge in Sunday’s Well to UCC; of heading back uphill to home at Árdan after a night on the town in the city beneath; and, more recently of grandchildren heading down on their own, finding formative independence, to Fitzgerald’s Park.
Doing a house-clear, they remember a dad in the converted attic, sketching and painting, or engaged in woodwork projects in the garage, and a mum’s baking, in rotation and raiding the garden for greens and blooms in season, roses virtually year-round.
Impressed on their memories too are expansive views of Cork city, over to the Bon Secours and UCC and “the uplifting year-round city nightscape,” which they got to reprise as adults during recent vigils and visits.
This has been a happy family home.
They’ve engaged Gillian McDonnell and David O’Donovan of Sherry FitzGerald to find its next owners, and Ms McDonnell guides the extremely well-kept, detached four-bed home at €520,000.
The Price Register shows 10 sales over the €500,000 price mark with a Shanakiel address, the highest being €685,000 for Landscape House on Shanakiel Road back in 2015. The most recent is Mount Carmel, also on Shanakiel Road, at €590,000: there’s only one resale showing in Shanakiel’s The Grove, and that was for No 3, back five years ago, at €305,000.
Árdan runs to just over 1,600 sq ft, with good sized rooms, many of them with a double aspect and consequently bright, and it’s a good layout, with a very effective side entrance porch, effectively compact room-sized, with parquet floor. At ground is a welcoming, carpeted double aspect sitting room with ’60s-style fireplace, a dining room, a study/playroom, kitchen with lots of timber units, next to a utility/laundry, linked by an arch. There’s a guest loo, while at first-floor level are the main family bathroom, four bedrooms, most of them doubles and with built-ins, and one has a washbasin and shower.
There’s a floored attic, divided into two rooms, one with a gable window and there’s central heating at this level also.
Externally, the south-facing home is up a few steps from The Grove, next to a private car garage -pic, right) and with the house name Árdan picked out in a wrought-iron arch by the entrance.
Add in family-friendly mature gardens front and rear in partial tiers with lawns, a big patio with glasshouse, and good neighbours, and, really it’s a place to call home for a lively new family. It’s also near Apple HQ, the Mardyke, the Lee Fields, UCC, hospitals and other major employers.
Sherry Fitz’s Gillian McDonnell says while it now obviously needs some modernising, it’s a family home for decades ahead.
Set high on a warm city hillside, Árdan lives up to its name – it means platform, or high aspiration.
Shanakiel, Cork City