Style and substance from an unlikely source

Tommy Barker says the homes at Rowan View have been rescued from the unfinished estates register

The homes at the niche development at Rowan View in Riverstick are substantial — coming in at more than 3,000 sq ft.

Riverstick, Cork - €605,000-€725,000

Size: 3,000-4,200 sq ft

Bedrooms: 5

Bathrooms: 5


THEY’RE back, as big, and better than ever before, on now-mature sites. And, if you were to accept the thrust of the glossy, 36-page image-laden sales brochure for homes at Rowan View, they’re even closer to Kinsale than they were 10 years ago, when construction high on a rural hill here first started.

Welcome to the big, block-buster homes at Rowan View, Riverstick, a niche 10-house project which was launched at an advanced stage of build way back in 2008 by a local land-owner developer.

It was called Rowan Lane back then, with boom-era prices indicated from €795,000 to over €1million. Only one sold post-launch, and another one has just sold now, prior to launch, to a couple relocating from the UK.

Initially highly visible from the main R600 road thanks to their size and setting, plus height, as many were built atop basement/lower ground floors, Rowan Lane languished for a while on registers of unfinished estates.

But, after a change of ownership, the drafting in of architects to freshen up the facades and considerable interior remodelling, there’s eight now coming up for sale, with a swish showhouse open on site today and tomorrow, from 12pm to 3pm, via joint agents Michael Powell of Powell Property, and Steve Brown of Sherry FitzGerald O’Donovan.

Mr Brown reportedly got close to €600,000 for the just-occupied 3,250 sq ft No 9 Rowan View, and now on Rowan View’s formal launch weekend, prices via Powells and SFOD start at €605,000 for the 3,250 sq ft Nos 6 and 7.

Floor plans and room layout and finishes are impressive, and the showhouse, done by designer Sara Murphy, is No 8, and that will be sold from €625,000.


The even-larger, over-basement houses are expected to sell from €660,000 to €725,000, and there’s €35,000 in PC sums for buyers to choose their own finishes, kitchens, robes etc.

Rowan View is set on five elevated acres just on the Kinsale side of Riverstick, effectively half way between Cork city/airport and the harbour town.

To judge solely from the heavyweight Powell/SFOD sales brochure, it could seem like it’s actually in Kinsale itself, as so many photos of the town and lifestyle options are used; there’s nary one real photo of Riverstick itself, despite all of that community’s expanded range of services, though the nearby Coillte woodland walk does appear to get a look-in.

Initially designed by PRC architects, they’ve been reworked by MByrne Architecture who’ve even changed and updated the front porches to good effect, with work by developers/contractors Unique Fitout, and they feel brand new, not as if they’ve been let languish.

And, the intervening decade has seen the landscaping and entrance stone walls all bed down too — it’s more than impressive.

Agent Steve Brown says “they are exquisitely finished to the highest standard, and from a value point of view, they provide the purchaser with extremely good value for money from a price per square foot perspective.”

Key to the interest will be the level of finish and space and the joint agents say that they’ve had “considerable interest from both home and abroad for what are a specific family homes, with both ample living space and well appointed bedrooms.”

VERDICT: Effectively halfway between city and sea, Rowan View looks set to come into its own. If it were actually in Kinsale, and had water views instead of the pleasant green valley aspect that it has, you could expect the prices to be €250,000/€500,000 dearer than what they are now.

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