ROUNDWOOD, COUNTY WICKLOW, IRELAND
Hidden inside a secluded Irish valley lies Luggala, an exquisite 18th-century house at the centre of an estate comprising of some 5000 acres. Luggala nestles into a cleft at the northern end of the valley, its principal rooms looking south across a verdant sward towards Lough Tay. The white-washed exterior of the building serves as a counterpoint to the dense woodland that rises immediately behind and helps to make architectural details like the roofline crenellations all the more striking.
Luggala is that special brand of eighteenth-century gothick that rejoices in little battlements, crochets, trefoil and quatrefoil windows and ogee mantelpieces, Indeed, quite like the gothick of pastrycooks and Rockingham china. In England such a style came to be called Strawberry Hill Gothic.
As the eighteenth century drew to a close the notion of picturesque in architecture became more popular and an alternative style of sporting lodge was sought. Luggala encapsulates the expression of that desire. The house ‘boasts all the appurtenances of a grand castle’ but on a miniature scale. There are battlements and crockets as well as a variety of pointed and quatrefoil windows together with other ornamentation such as the limestone obelisks embellishing the top of the main door and corners of the central, south-facing breakfront.
Inside a composite sequence of elements work together to produce a coherent whole. Within a modest footprint Luggala Lodge manages to contain 3 substantial reception rooms as well as a wealth of smaller chambers on both the ground and first floors, with the latter’s size not being externally apparent. There are 7 bedrooms within the main house, 4 within th ...