House of the week

BUILT about 12 years ago, the large family home Oaklodge has lots of design detail and quirks to help it stand out as a home worth hankering after.

These differences are most marked in two areas: one being the floor-to-ceiling bay windows, running over two levels on the one side of this two-facaded home, and the other a standout, high-ceiling hall in the centre of the two ‘wings’ with a galleried landing overhead.

First, those stairs: there’s thought, effort and craftmanship gone into realising this exceptional feature, done in solid red oak, panelled on its lower sections as it flanks the hall’s back wall, distinguished by a stepped, three-pane window along its side. Oak features also in the doors, the floors and the kitchen units, among other uses, and in keeping with the wooded theme, externally there’s lots of decking to the back of the house, in linked and stepped sections, as part of a significant landscaping plan. There’s also space for a hot tub, sheltered between the house’s projecting back wings under that stairwall’s feature window.

Selling agent for this Ballinamona home, in the Castlewoods enclave, is Margaret Fogarty of Remax in Waterford, who says it’s pristine and well located, near the city, airport, Regional hospital, Whitfield Clinic, and with easy access to Dunmore East and Tramore, the N25 Cork road, and the M9 north for Dublin.

The site — wooded beyond to the front — is of a suitable scale for the house’s size and stature/height, with about three-quarters of an acre, all landscaped, reached beyond cut stone entrance pillars with electric gates, and the grounds have been lit for effect at night.

Main rooms are off to the corners of this four-square house, with three good reception rooms, and a kitchen/dining room plus study, guest cloakroom, and a utility, with kitchen/diner to the front left of the house. Upstairs are four good bedrooms, two en suite, and two have those distinctive, floor-to-ceiling windows giving a vertiginous ‘floating’ effect as you approach them.

Ceiling heights internally are about 9ft and are coved, while the hall/landing ceiling is twice that height at least, with a dramatic double-height glazed entrance section facilitating lofty ‘giraffe-height’ columns, with a sheltering portico overhead. Back inside, skirtings and architraves are also moulded, bathrooms are tiled in black and white and while most floors are in timber, the scene-setting stairs is carpeted, with metal stair rods in place.

The house is at the upper end of Waterford’s current narrow range of upmarket offerings, and according to selling agent Ms Fogarty, Oaklodge “nurtures everyday family living and provides beautiful entertaining areas internally and externally, with its lawned gardens manicured and maturing beautifully, in keeping with the natural woodland setting.”

The immediate area is well serviced, and there’s horse riding nearby at Ballinamona Equestrian Centre, while the proximity of the sea also puts activities like sailing, surfing, fishing and golf close to hand.

VERDICT: The price might appear lofty, but so is the house itself, with its extra height, and site, it’s sort of head and shoulders above much of the competition.


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