HOUSE OF THE WEEK: Townhouse and restaurant in Schull on market for €999,950

April 3rd, 2024 8:00 AM

By Martin Claffey

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Labour of love in Schull is really one in a million

YOU might just get €50 change out of €1m if you decide to invest in Nico’s in Schull. But there’s heart and soul gone into this wonderful three-bedroom two-bath townhouse.

On the market with auctioneer Mary Cotter of Irish Rural Homes for €999,950, Nico’s is currently home to a restaurant and wine bar with extensive outdoor space, and a private family residence overhead, right in the heart of Schull.

Holly and Nico Runske are selling the property, which they fell in love with six years ago.

‘For both of us, she was our favourite building in the village and when she came on the market in early 2018, we jumped on it straight away,’ said Holly. ‘We had literally just pulled out of the purchase of another property in the village as it didn’t feel right when only three days later, Casa Diego, as our building was known at the time, came up for sale - It felt like it was meant to be ours.’

The pair had plans to renovate and reopen the property with 12 months before planning delays and the pandemic interrupted the project.

Instead the renovation took place over a three-year period, with 2019 spent focusing on the south-facing garden space, before the inside was stripped back entirely and the floors pulled up,  ‘giving us an entirely blank canvas to work with. Nico calculated that he wheelbarrowed about 120 tonnes of rubble out of the building, which was a major undertaking in itself and that was just the beginning!’ said Holly.

But the painstaking renovation was worth it, and also took a nod to the future, with the building designed and wired through-out to ultimately run off solar, wind, and wood-fired energy.

With the help of family, friends, and contractors including builder Kieran Connolly, Nico’s was finally ready to open  December 2021.

The ground floor now hosts a restaurant, wine bar, and. The two-tiered south facing garden has a cool whitewashed bar, covered terrace and landscaped sheltered.

The first floor offers a bright and spacious living/dining/ kitchen accommodation, with high ceilings and sashed windows. On this same floor is a  sheltered sun terrace/balcony with views of Schull Harbour and Cape Clear. On the second floor, there are three double bedrooms, master with ensuite as well as a family bathroom.

‘An incredibly challenging couple of years but so rewarding to have brought such a wonderful property back to life. It is a special building for sure as has been attested to by so many who have walked through her doors,’ said Holly. ‘So many lovely and fond memories shared with us of times past here, from people who worked here, ate here or stayed here when it was ‘Adele’s (which holds an extra special place in people’s hearts), to sunny afternoons spent sipping lovely Spanish wine out the back during its time as ‘Diego’s’ and much further back, when locals recall coming here as small children many, many moons ago when it was a village shop.

‘For our part in her luminous and happy history, we will walk away knowing that she has been painstakingly and lovingly renovated and will, without doubt, stand the test of time, inside and out!

‘Our six years as her owners and caretakers has been life changing for us in many ways - we have realised skills we didn’t know we had, have learned many others and will, like many, take with us many happy memories of times spent here. It may be time for us to move on to pastures new but we leave hoping that we have done her proud with the certain feeling that, no matter what her next incarnation is destined to be, it will be a fabulous one, and one that can only be the bearer of happy times and cherished memories for many to come!’

• For inquiries contact 028-25935 or [email protected]

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