House expansion – how the design of the House of the Year winner doubled the size of this € 650,000 terraced house in Dublin 3

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8 Foyle Road, Fairview, Dublin 3 Asking price: € 650,000 Agent: Gallagher Quigley: (01) 818 3000

The artisanal chalet which won this year’s popular ‘House of the Year’ award is a classic example of good things to come in small packages.

The small big winner of Rathmines had been redeveloped with the help of the architect Denis Gilbert.

Judge and fellow architect Hugh Wallace described the house as “oozing style, with great functionality for a small home, but even better – great personality.”

The same could be said for No8 Foyle Road, Fairview. This is one of the terraces of Victorian houses originally built for local factory workers and it was also reimagined by the skills of Gilbert, an architect known to be as adept at designing large buildings as the terminals. airport to make the most of small craft spaces.

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Architect Denis Glibert PHOTO: Tony Gavin

Architect Denis Glibert PHOTO: Tony Gavin

As Gilbert says, any design project requires a similarity of approach, regardless of the scale.

The Fairview house has been more than doubled as it spans upward.

“At the end of the day, it’s about getting the layout the customer wants,” says Gilbert. “In this case, the owners wanted a functional family home that would respect the original house, while maximizing light and space. The house had been compartmentalized before, so we reconfigured everything and rebuilt it efficiently.

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The open plan kitchen / dining / living room with peaked roof and velux windows


The open plan kitchen / dining / living room with peaked roof and velux windows

The open plan kitchen / dining / living room with peaked roof and velux windows

When Jo-Ann Feely and Ralph Mills first brought the architect to see the dilapidated house they bought in 2005, it was, according to Jo-Ann, “a wreck.”

“It was designed as student apartments, with closed windows, making the rooms dark and grimy, but that didn’t deter us,” she recalls. “We were happy to take on a project in the right location and this neighborhood suited us perfectly, being within walking distance of the city, schools and the seaside.

While they spent the first nine years making modest improvements, in 2014 when their eldest daughter Ella turned 11 and twins Leo and Isabel were five they decided to go bankrupt and relocate. entirely home to meet the needs of their growth. family.

Denis Gilbert interpreted this vision for their dream home and Jemi Construction completed the building while interior designer Cathríona Edwards helped create the living space they wanted inside.

“The combined genius of this dream team has reset the heart of our home,” says Ralph, who introduced women’s rugby to neighboring Clontarf, becoming head coach the same year he tackled renovating his own. House.

“What was once a small kitchen has been transformed into an open plan dining / dining / living area where we all meet. Double-height glass windows here frame old trees outside currently home to three pink-ringed parakeets that escaped from a petting zoo. They really brighten up the garden.

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Another view of the open concept extension


Another view of the open concept extension

Another view of the open concept extension

A roof at the top with three rows of Velux windows on each side creates a feeling of space and floods the room with light. Between the extension and a converted attic, the home now spans 1,679 square feet with two adjoining reception rooms in the hallway, one with an office area and double doors leading to a side patio.

Beyond the hall is storage / utility space and a family bathroom. Upstairs, three bedrooms (one with adjoining shower room) and a separate toilet.

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The house has three bedrooms


The house has three bedrooms

The house has three bedrooms

The converted attic is a multipurpose room with storage under the eaves. The back garden has a paved patio, a manicured lawn and trees where the colorful parakeets live.

The project took 16 weeks and cost $ 120,000, but Jo-Ann and Ralph say it was worth it.

“Cathríona Edwards is not only an interior design ace, she is also a psychologist and a friend, who took into account the way we live our lives,” explains Jo-Ann.

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Interior designer Cathríona Edwards


Interior designer Cathríona Edwards

Interior designer Cathríona Edwards

“She’s helped us create the kind of living space we love, including wall colors we like, a combination of neutrals with pops of bright orange, yellow and other warm tones.”

The walls are lined with books and artwork, including a photo of James Joyce, a clue to Ralph’s final odyssey.

A graduate acupuncturist, he is currently putting the finishing touches on his first novel, which he describes as “a near-future science fiction novel set in Dublin”.

As Global Managing Director of Innovation at Workplace Recruitment Company AMS, Jo-Ann’s high-flying career once involved extensive travel overseas, but like most people who work now at home, she says, “my wings have been cut off in the last 18 months.” But she’s not complaining. Working from home in the comfort of No8 Foyle Road comes with benefits.

“Sweeney’s D3 around the corner makes fantastic coffee and maybe one of the best wine shops in Dublin,” she says.

For those who like swimming in salt water, there are groups within easy reach. “It’s a 10 minute walk to Clontarf Prom and 20 minutes to O’Connell Street. You can actually see the spire from our room.

While the couple have now decided to take on another repairman in the nearby town of Clontarf, they say they will never forget their many happy years at Foyle Road.

For Ralph, one of his fondest memories is a sunny July day in 2017, when U2 played against Croke Park on the road.

“Jo-Ann went to the concert with her friends, while I was sitting in the back garden with a cold beer,” he recalls. “Suddenly the audience started singing when the band started playing, ‘I still haven’t found what I’m looking for.’ Sitting there in my own back garden, being rocked by over 60,000 people, it was pure magic.

Now that the family is in the process of selling, Gallagher Quigley is looking for € 650,000.


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