Henrietta Street is Dublin's earliest Georgian Street and this house is Georgian Dublin's finest. A street full of surprises, I tell you. The entrance to King's Inn is spectacular and there is a picnic-worthy park right behind the cul-de-sac. Also, quite a few movies and TV shows were filmed there, such as Albert Nobbs and Penny Dreadful.
The moment I stepped into this majestic house, I immediately knew I was in for a treat. An architectural titan. A throwback to the 18th century. This quintessentially Georgian townhouse was built in 1731 and designed by Sir Edward Lovett Pearce. From wealthy aristocratic ballers to slummy tenement housing, this house has seen everything; no. 12 is the epitome of the glory and the misery of an era. Centuries of history with no witnesses left - just imagine the stories this house could tell. The whole place screams haunted - some creepy displays of taxidermy, an eerie garden in the backyard, creaky stairs... You could almost hear footsteps from the past.
Let's focus on the beautiful interiors. Ceilings so high it makes you feel as if there's no roof. A bit like Downton Abbey with a touch of Addams Family. Gems and relics like paintings, piano and antiques add some bygone opulent luxury to the decadent decor. Rich details like embellished stairways and plasterwork wonders are an absolute delight to the sight. I wonder how exactly did it look like before being converted to tenements.The property has this atmospheric allure that one can only experience when the house itself has a soul (in this case, plenty of souls, I reckon) and the mirrors harbour memories.
Open House Dublin, presented by the Irish Architecture Foundation, offered the visitors the opportunity to get an up close and personal sneak peek, inviting the people to explore the urban secret side of the city. It's not like this house (and many other venues) would be open to public on a regular basis. I was so impressed with this piece of heritage that I couldn't help daydreaming and thinking how it would be if that house was my home. What struck me the most was the timeless nostalgia around those spacious rooms, with candle-lit chandeliers and old furniture smell. I'll never look at a building the same way as I will always wonder what would I find behind those bricks, beneath those layers of fading wallpaper... Gosh, I would've been a great real estate agent, ah! Anyway, if you look at these photos and still think "It's just a feckin' old house", think twice.