Superior family six bedroom detached residence in a mature, well-established cul-de-sac. Generous dimensions throughout this fabulous 3 storey residence togetherwith a stunning, south-facing garden to the rear makes this one of the very best family properties to come on the market in recent years. No. 45 is loaded with a myriad of features including a generous Study, cosy yet roomy Den, Open Fire, Gas Fire, Back Kitchen, Timber Floors, Spacious landings—the list is endless! Close proximity to a host of Schools and walking distance to the City Centre, and Salthill Promenade.
Modern Elegance in Galway City
This home located in the outskirts of Galway city is a mix of traditional elegance with a delicate modern twist. The owners felt that their home needed a lift, having lived with the decor that was already in the house when they bought it a few years previously. They employed the services of Laurent Billet of La Maison Chic. Having visited his showroom over the years they were very taken with the richness of fabrics he had on display.
The House That Mary Built
On a bleak Saturday afternoon I followed my nose along the roads around the Gurteen area of Ballinasloe and eventually arrived at my destination – Mary’s Home. A rambling overgrown garden, only hinted of what it looks like in the Summer, led to an old house that certainly gave no hint of what lay beyond its front door. The warmth of the stove greeted me at the front door and the old bench with its shabby chic cushions told the story of the style and design that was seen throughout the house. This home was ‘shabby chic’ at its best. The care and attention to detail showed Mary’s – the owner of this beautiful home – style and love for all things old and new.
A Futureproofed Home In Salthill .
Photography by Alan Smyth
Having acquired one of the last remaining prime sites in the Salthill area, Michael & Sheila were anxious to ensure that the house they were about to build would have a low carbon footprint and use as much renewable energy as possible. Over the next six months there followed a lengthy process of meeting, discussions and consultations with Gerard Carr of Gerard Carr & Associates and Declan Dooley of Kilcastle Construction Ltd to design what would best suit such a site, and meet Michael & Sheila’s expectations. The brief was to create a ‘home’ that was bright, warm, easy to maintain and with as much “future proofing” as possible and with sights on an “A” BER to create a low carbon footprint. This result was achieved in the final analysis.
The entrance hall is warm and welcoming with rich cream marfil porcelain tiles that flows into the large dining/kitchen area. Ceilings downstairs are all 2.6 meter high which gives a big bright open feeling. The white oak timber stairs, doors, architrave and 150mm moulded skirting board are rich and vibrant. There are three recessed shelves which elegantly display some beautiful porcelain pieces making full use of led diode down lighting. The family room comprises 225mm solid oak floor boards, custom designed solid black granite fireplace with Barbas Wood burning stove. The brocade curtains with their cream and wine shades complement the full leather suites. The sitting room provides a large bright and appealing area in which to relax and unwind. It is designed with an imposing Perlino cream marble fireplace with black granite insert and hearth. It is complemented with a Nestor Martin insert stove which has a heating capacity of 12 Kw with 80% efficiency. Rich red curtains in the large bay window add a striking contrast to the black leather suite which host luxury black and red matching scatter cushions. Two large chandeliers work very well with the soft wall lighting and a designer standard lamp and shade.
The double French doors with custom glass panels lead into the dining/kitchen area. This large dining/kitchen area is bathed in light from 5.3m glass panels which stand 2.1m high with two velux roof lights in an apex over the two 1.2m wide centre doors that open onto the rear patio.
A large solid oak 2.5m table with high back leather upholstered chairs can easily accommodate eight adults for any dinner party. A large sumptuous couch is the perfect spot to relax after dinner whilst reading a newspaper or book with an abundance of natural light flooding into this room. You can also relax here, looking onto the magnificent patio and listening to your favourite music through the integrated sound system with its ceiling mounted speakers. The oak island is set at an angle in between the dining and kitchen areas – which highlights the vast space of this elegant living area – with its granite top and breakfast bar, complete with stainless steel inset sink, foldaway chopping board and under counter wine cooler. It is softly lit with four conical shades suspended from the ceiling.
All of this is backed by a totally modern kitchen which is perfectly balanced with design and detail accompanied by soft unit and pelmet lights. The kitchen boasts two full size Miele Ovens, Induction Hob, fully integrated fridge/freezer and fully integrated dishwasher.
The rear patio is paved with soft cream granite slabs and has a 30mm raised red brick flower bed which has an explosion of summer colours both from the plants and the planters with their vibrant displays of colour. The area is strategically lit with garden spot lights and pillar lights at night. A carefully positioned corner water feature completes the ambience of this peaceful patio/garden. The dining area flows out into the large patio area which mirrors the living area in style, colour and texture.
Moving upstairs, one is greeted with a large timber floored landing area which is lit from two large velux roof lights that extends to a maximum apex of 5.2m, creating a large open light filled space. The main bathroom oozes with character, with black and white themed tiles. The main bathroom consists of clear shower door houses with a large rainwater showered, a stainless steel towel radiator, an insert sink in a vanity unit with a heated mirror which prevents it steaming up. The perfect spot to unwind and relax in the jacuzzi bath after a long day. There are two master bedrooms both of which are en-suite and each have their own walk in wardrobe. One bedroom is decorated with vibrant purple colours and has wall to wall additional wardrobes and storage drawers with a 37 inch flat screen TV cleverly concealed behind timber framed mirrored colonial sliding door. All bedrooms benefit from 2.6m high ceilings, large triple glazed windows and solid timber oak floors, architraves and skirting.
The built in solid timber wardrobe and presses are all custom handmade and are more than ample for each of the large double bedrooms. Soft bed linens combined with matching cushions and curtains coupled with an imaginative use of wall mirrors and prints complete the décor to make these rooms truly 5* accommodation. The future proofing, small carbon footprint and easy maintenance, is very evident in this home. From first sighting of the house, one sees that it is red bricked on three sides. The North facing side to the rear of the house has been finished in a white sand and cement plastering, as has all the boundary walls. This helps to direct the light to the back garden which is also bordered to the rear with an established tree line and some planting of additional gold crest trees to the rear and west boundary. This creates an exceptionally private, yet light filled rear patio/garden which was fully exploited during the “heat waves” of the past summer. The house is heated with a Daikin 14kw Air to Water heat pump with under floor heating throughout and each room and the hall has a separate thermostat control. Solar tubes on the south facing roof provide ample hot water.
This full system was designed by Unitherm Heating Systems in Galway. All of the plumbing – including water storage tanks and 300 ltr hot water cylinder are stored in a separate room adjoining the rear of the house. This eliminates all the noises that go “bang in the night”. The triple glazed windows throughout – give a U value of 0.8, 50mm kingspan insulation on all exterior walls and the attic area is spray foamed to roof slopes from purlin to wall plates, front & rear of the dwelling – thus the house is always warm, cosy and quiet. Outside the house, suitable ducting has been laid to accommodate any switchover to gas or oil should they become a more favourable means of heating, at any time in the future. A dedicated electric supply cable has also been provided to the front of the house to cater for an electric car in the future.
The downstairs bathroom has been equipped with a “wet room” shower with a door lintel provided to access the family room should it ever become necessary to provide a downstairs bedroom. Heat recovery and internal vacuum system was installed by Sean Gavin Beam installation. The heat recovery is very effective in recovering up to 87% of all heat generated in the home whether it be from cooking, a light bulb or the under floor heating system. This make the overall heating costs very effective, ensures fresh air throughout the house and leaves a very small carbon footprint. Work on the construction of the house began in May 2012 and was fully completed and handed over in turnkey readiness by Declan Dooley of Kilcastle Construction in April 2013. Declan was chosen by Michael and Sheila to complete this project after a lot of consultation and discussions with a number of interested parties in early 2013. “We never looked back from that decision. Declan was very easy to work with and was very thorough in every single detail of the house” Michael tells us. “His interest in the build was so meticulous that at times we felt that he might have been building his own house, such was the level of interest. Having a builder that was professional, interested and would discuss any minor modifications that we had or indeed that he felt would be of benefit was a huge asset throughout” agreed Sheila & Michael. It was the small things like advising on the availability of 50mm Kingspan over 38mm or the research into the type of ridge tiles that made the finishing touches to a house that today Michael & sheila call home. the final word from Michael & Sheila, ‘to Declan and his team of professional tradesmen a very sincere thank you”
The tiniest of rooms can seem more spacious with good design and in a home space is a highly desirable luxury. Upstairs Downstairs visited one of Noel Brannelly Kitchens to see some of Noel’s clever use of space. This kitchen has solid a solid timber units hand painted from Farrow & Ball paint range. Colour, whether a subtle ivory or vibrant crimson, brings life to kitchens. All Noel Brannelly kitchens can be painted, whether in part or in their entirety, in different shades and hues. They tailor to suit each of the client’s measurements. Tall, hand painted cabinets with feature bespoke internal storage.
Here is a sample of some clever use of space in a Noel Brannelly Kitchen.
Solid timber Kitchen.
Pull out dish drawers from Fisher & Paykel.
A key cupboard, the drawers behind this cupboard only allow a shallow space where Noel cleverly designed a key cupboard.
A shallow shelf perfect for books.
Solid dovetailed drawers varying in depths for cutlery on the top with the pots in the bottom.
Another ingenious use of small space, home for two solid timber walnut trays.
A circular solid walnut breakfast bar sits neatly on the side of the solid hand painted timber island.
Home Renovation Tax Incentive Scheme is very exciting for home owners – also Bank of Ireland are releasing €75 million in response to the government’s new scheme.
We featured two fabulous home renovations in one of our previous issues both were done without the hassle and need for planning permission
Upstairs Downstairs are doing feature in the Dec/Jan issue, on this government’s home renovation scheme, so here are a few tasters to whet your appetite and get your ideas flowing for your home renovations
Extend Your Space
Light and Airy Extension With a Wow Kitchen!
The ordinary façade of this three bed semi belies the airy, light-filled space that is inside, thanks to a large kitchen extension to the back of the house. This kitchen definitely has the wow factor. The first feeling on entering it is of light and space. It is a bright, spacious room, cleverly arranged in three sections, of living, cooking and dining, all in one!
Builder – Stephen Mullins – Tel: 087 7999707
Kitchen – Michael Doyle – Tel: 0879600262
A Family Home Extended beyond Recognition
Elaine & Frank invited us back to their home many years after we had featured it in Upstairs Downstairs. They had just completed some major changes and were delighted with the results. The house had been extended and it truly had been changed beyond recognition. The wonderful thing about this extension was that it was within 40 m2, so they not have to go through the planning permission process. The extension was exactly 40 m2 and fulfilled all their wishes and needs.
Builder: Tony Connealy (087) 2069740
Hard landscaping: Cara Landscapes (David) (086) 8204595
1 Q I am in the habit of wearing black to work, can you recommend how I can add some color to my wardrobe? –Carmel L., Galway
1 A Many of the summer colours have carried through to Autumn Winter. I would recommend trying some of the bright coloured trousers in Zara €39.95), or Reiss €125, they are a great transition from Autumn to Winter
2 Q I would like to introduce some leather into my wardrobe, can you suggest a piece that would make my wardrobe look current? — Elizabeth., Roscommon
2 A Leather seems to be everywhere at the moment so the options are endless! Topshop €115 has the most amazing leather turquoise pencil skirt that can be dressed up or down. Whisltes €440 also do really cool dark green leather pants for the more adventurous dresser, as seen recently on uber stylish Lily Collins
3 Q Can you recommend how I can dress up a black dress? Simone,. Dublin
3 A There are a number of different ways you can transform your black dress. Lennon Courtney €40 do great leather collars that can really update your look. Topshop €80 have a great collection of new black and white court shoes that would look really chic with any black dress! You could also try Zara €22.95 pearls and chain necklace from their new collection for a more edgier look.
4 Q I am looking for heels that I can wear to work that are comfortable but look on trend? — Sandra., Dublin
4 A can be little overly ambitious when choosing the height of my heel, thankfully this seasons trends are more sympathetic to our feet! Try a neutral color that will work with number of looks! Reiss €25 do a pointed toe mid heel boot that works well with trousers, skirts and dresses.