If you take a stroll along Alma Road in Dublin’s Monkstown you will find a street of tall Victorian homes, and on its corner, what looks like the wall of a very well-secured garden.
However, this garden wall – despite its lack of visible windows – is in fact a €2.3 million home described by Hunters Estate Agents as no less than a “masterpiece of modern design”.
The unique appearance of 1A Alma Road is the product of site restrictions, with four previous attempts at planning rejected due to the pivotal nature of the corner site on the street of period homes.
Planners stipulated that no new home could be built to look like an old one, there could be no windows visible from three sides of the dwelling, and that strict height restrictions must be adhered to.
It took architectural practice ODOS to step in and find a solution – building a house that looks like a Victorian wall based on the site’s history as an orchard garden.
Finished and sold to its current owners in 2014 for €1.3 million, it has now returned to the market with an asking price of €2.3 million.
And while you might expect a dark and cramped interior as a result of the garden wall theme, a look inside the two-storey house spanning more than 2,000 square feet proves otherwise.
The four-bed house is “an almost secret home hidden from the world and focused on light, with [an] internal atrium courtyard and beautifully framed sky vistas,” according to Hunters Estate Agents.
The atypical design carries through into the house, with its bedrooms located on the ground floor, opening out onto a lower courtyard, while the first floor living spaces are connected through a series of courtyards and sun terraces.
Heating a house like this is also not quite the nightmare you might expect, with the building A3 rated thanks to solar water heating panels, a heat recovery system, underfloor heating, and a green roof with a water recovery system.
Perhaps its new owners might save some money on a security system, as few thieves are likely to target what misleadingly looks like just another hole in the wall.