House of the week: Sunday’s Well, Cork €435,000

A slice of old Cork city suburbs and far vistas too, come with this back-to-front house, No 33 Sunday’s Well Road.

House of the week: Sunday’s Well, Cork €435,000

Size: 191 sq m (2,060 sq ft)

Bedrooms: 3/4

Bathrooms: 3

BER: Exempt

Best Feature: Setting

Dating back to 1780, and a protected structure, the venerable old four-storey home with a modern two-storey add-on gives little away of its presence to the road and to whatever’s passing in front — or, is it to the rear?

All the glories of No 33 are away from the road.

They are across its south-facing elevation, and this southerly aspect also include views down over the River Lee to the city’s cricket club across the water by the Mardyke, and just to the west in view too are Sunday’s Well Tennis Club, further on again is the creatively refreshed Fitzgerald’s Park, and then the Mardyke Sports Grounds of UCC.

All are within a short walk, especially now thanks to a new pedestrian bridge and riverside walking route, and the city centre’s an easy amble away also.

No 33 is terraced/semi-detached, with a couple of garages to one side (which don’t form part of this property, so any parking needs are catered for on-street only) and on the other side is a similar era private home.

The precise setting is close to the bottom of Buxton Hill and the butchers shop at its foot, while a few doors away is the sentinel St Vincent’s Church, which finally gave up its own parish duties last month.

Many of the houses along this much-prized residential stretch have super-long gardens running right down to the river, but No 33’s is truncated, there’s another house set down here well off the road, and far down below is some dense intervening greenery — and audible is the river weir by the cricket club.

No 33’s own enclosed gardens are terraced and tiered, largely set up for easy maintenance, with gravel, hard surfaces, decking and shrubs, with colour and greenery mostly by the walled boundaries. Other than that, the greenest views are ‘borrowed’ from the sloping landscape.

Quite a one-off, even in a neighbourhood of some house size diversity, No 33 came to market last week, guided at €435,000 by Catherine McAuliffe and Michael O’Donovan of Savills, who had a very recent sale of a refurbished and upgraded early 1900s home at the top of Buxton Hill for €415,000.

No 33 will get some of the same viewing interest, but also a different demographic given its age and aspect, its perch-like vantage point and those verdant views.

Done up and extended about a decade ago, so that now there’s over 2,000 sq ft, it has kept lot of its original features, as well as having additional comforts.

The work and extension was overseen by Brazilian architect Haraldo Oliveira, who works in and is a partner with Jack Coughlan & Associates architects, and whose offices are based very close by in 21 Sundays Well Road, so he knows the locale backwards.

The extension is over the house’s lower two levels, essentially a room extra per level, with a new kitchen/dining room with an Aga at the lower level, opening to a raised deck which also is reached from the main living room in the original house core area next to the hall.

Floors in the main house section are effectively just one room deep, so this living room gets all its light from its south-facing French doors, with no windows at all to the street at this lower-ground level, or, indeed, at the street level above. Just the first floor has any widows to the road, each a small timber sash opening.

A good percentage of the house’s floors are taken up by stairs and landings for circulation: the entry level has a further reception room with bay window and fireplace, while the winged extension adds a study plus bathrooms, or more likely for some uses, an en suite bedroom No 4.

Continuing upwards, along old timber stairs with a feature arched window set into an exposed stone wall, there are two quite slender bedrooms at first floor level, and the top floor houses a far larger 19’ by 16’ master bedroom, dormer roof window, adjacent bathroom, and a south-facing Velux over the stairs

VERDICT: Very old and multi-layered city pad, with views.

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