It's June 2021. A year and a month since the site started being cleared. No one knew that when the diggers rolled in to flatten and build up the site that a global pandemic would last as long and have such far reaching consequences. But here we are and the downtime has at least allowed us to plan and take our time.
We had decided that since no one could leave the house, let alone fly that most of the designing would take place in Dubai where at least we could make progress locally with what the house would look like. It's fair to say that dubai started lockdown and came out the other side many months before UK so we were at least able to crack on with things in the meantime.
We engaged Bluehaus in Dubai for the design, lead by our good friend Ben Corrigan, and soon our design consultants Jeroen and Geraldine were found most days huddled around our dining table.
The finished product was submitted I'm sure to howls of laughter from the local Ireland Planning Department. The combination of lack of experience on our part and the fact that Dubai ideas and Bluehaus (with a track record of building hotels) meant that it appears the house was rather large by Lisfannon standards. Our idea to build the house pretty much to fill the site entirely, wasn't going to fly. So it's fair to say that a large amount of "trimming" was done and a few "wish list" rooms lost.
It's also fair to say that despite being ruthless, the bar, the gym and the walk in closet still made the cut, to the detriment of a bedroom, second lounge and a big conservatory! But the end result was still amazing.
Seeing the site actually marked out was the first time it started to really become a reality, and walking those chalk marks was super exciting.