In fact, when Irish Examiner photographer Denis Scannell visited this Waterfall house on a snow-fall day on Tuesday, a hunt was in full flight, throat and throttle down the approach lane.
Smart as a fox, he leapt to the ditch for safety, after his near-brush run-in with horses and hounds.
Now, the spot is open to home-hunters, looking for a stable environment: it’s a property with particular appeal to families keen on the horses themselves, or who have children eager to get or to keep a pony or two, as it comes on five acres, with stables and arena.
It’s a new year listing with estate agent Norma Healy of Sherry FitzGerald, who had her first open show this week, with about a half dozen viewers visiting.
“I think everyone who came had children who’d be interested in ponies,” said Ms Healy, who guides this 2,500 sq ft family home on its five acres at €530,000 and who’s even doing Sunday viewings tomorrow from 2-3pm. Expect to see at least one crew eating sandwiches out the back of a horse trailer.
A dormer, this Greybrook house was originally built in the late 1970s, and the current owners extended and upgraded it back around 2006.
In the case of this offer, Sherry FitzGerald do expect the horse facilities to be a factor in the sale in coming months.
However, that was their expectation too, back last May, when they put a 1,600 sq ft Ballygarvan bungalow a similar distance south-west of the city called Brookwood on four acres with pristine gardens, woodland, stream, pasture and stables to market.
As it turns out, very few horse owners made a serious tilt at that Ballygarvan mix: it was bought by a young family returning from mainland Europe, just looking for a bit of land — a case of putting the home before the horse. Guide price there was €475,000, and it made €465,000 all-in.
Now, this €530,000 Old Abbey Waterfall home is bigger, and on a bit more land (but with less stabling) and is elevated out at Greybrook, with distant views (“panoramic,” says surveyor Norma Healy) back towards Cork City and western suburbs about five miles away.
That distance means it’s close enough for medics ‘on call’ in places like the CUH and Bons Secours, and CIT and UCC (where one of the vendors lectures) are also an easy commute.
The space is quite unrivalled, Ms Healy adds, with small arena, grassy soccer and trampolining area, and several stables in a block and corrugated steel structure. There’s also an attached garage on the house’s side gable.
Heating now comes from a wood-pellet boiler as well as from an oil burner, and within the two-storey home are four first-floor bedrooms, one with en suite and dressing room, plus family bathroom.
Downstairs is a front-to-back 24’ by 13 living room, as well as a slightly larger family room linked to kitchen/breakfast space, and this space has a cast iron multi-fuel stove, set into a brick hearth. In addition, there’s a further decent-size play room beyond, as well as a utility, and a guest WC.
Overall condition is very good: “it’s going to appeal to a growing family, looking for a large family home in a friendly neighbourhood and, of course, room for a pony or two,” says Sherry FitzGerald.
Location is quite close to Ballinora NS and to an open pet farm, and it’sadjacent to the Greybrook riding school.
It is reached out past the well-known O’Sheas’ pub and the Waterfall Heatherfield development where house No 12 made €500,000 in 2014, while another Ballyleigh, Waterfall home made €550,000 last year, notes the Price Register.
“It’s in a country setting while only being a few minutes from civilization,” observes agent Norma Healy - but, try telling that to a photographer leaping into a ditch to avoid a hunt.