A lodgement in peace

The last time this house, Stone Lodge, was on the market it sold within a week, writes Rose Martin.

THERE isn’t a sinner to be seen up at Stone Lodge, it’s a private place with just the rustle of trees, and the soft twitter of bird song all around.

This really is an oasis of tranquility and its location is just above the Inniscarra Dam on one of those steep undulating hillsides of the Lee Valley.

Ah, you have to say to yourself, taking in the tree tops as they crowd over the dense valley floor below. Ah, to the breath of fresh air and sense of freedom that only a fine summer’s day in the country can bring.

The couple who live here tried to leave Stone Lodge once before, the house went on the market and sold within a week.

But, to estate agents’ and solicitors’ chagrin, baulked at the last minute and refused to leave. Now, however, with their minds made up, they’re putting their cosy nest up for sale at a cool, €625,000 through Robert O’Keeffe of Irish and European.

This is a house of two parts: the original, two storey farmhouse and a later addition, also in stone. The vendors have also tagged on a south-west facing sunroom onto the front and it’s a basking spot summer and winter, with the finest views of the valley.

The interior is higgledy-piggledy, as only old houses can be and it hasn’t been tricked around with much, it’s very old country in style and would fit a whimsical, BBC series in a thrice, (think Doc Marten).

Anyway, it’s in perfect condition with a newish, eat-in kitchen, (painted maple doors), with an island unit and access to the conservatory.

Then, there’s a separate entrance hall with utility and cloakroom and then a corridor leading through to the library, with its old stone fireplace and its battalions of heavy books. A cosy, writerly room.

Behind it is the living room, an end room with windows on three sides and a stove perched in the old cast iron fireplace. The guest bathroom is tucked into a little room between library an living room and it has cute hand-crafted styling, much like the rest of the house.

Overhead, there’s the bedroom floor with a fine en suite bathroom to the master, (a new addition), a second, double bedroom with its own access to the main bathroom and two other bedrooms.

One is a small single, but snug and south-facing and the other is a double with built-in units, although it’s currently in use as a laundry room/ linen store.

This house is quirky, home spun and unpretentious, yet it’s very well finished and has a burnished, old fashioned charm.

That’s magnified in the outdoor space where herbaceous borders have burst into bloom this month and where shrub beds are now tall, architectural features in a landscape with some interesting levels and rocky outcrops.

There’s a vegetable patch too — at the back of the house where some whitewashed old outhouses give the final touch to the bucolic setting.

Stone Lodge is just by the entrance to the Dam and is ten minutes to Ballincollig and a quick commute to Cork city on the bypass route.

VERDICT: Definitely one for dreamers, for good-lifers and for long-term players — because the amount of ground would allow a site or two for family in the long term. So cute buyers should view too.

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