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Killiney History | January 18, 2022

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Buona Vista & Bella Vista

Buona Vista & Bella Vista
NameBuona Vista & Bella Vista
AddressKilliney Hill Road
On 1888 mapYes
Last Modified: 26 Dec 2021 | author

This semi-detached pair of Victorian houses no longer exist although the site is well known to locals who have had to endure the sight of the partially constructed modern house which has being lying derelict for over a decade.

Peter Pearson mentions in relation to Marino on Killiney Hill Road: ‘The original house was occupied by a Joshua Cheator, or Chaytor, who owned a substantial amount of land in Killiney and built a number of Victorian houses including St Anne’s, Buenavista, Abbeylands and Mentone. Cheator had previously lived at Purbeck Lodge in Monkstown where he had constructed four houses.’ He goes on to comment: ‘All of these large Victorian houses were built to reflect the status and position of the family that lived there. These houses required an imposing front, a grand hall and a well-furnished drawing room. A larger residence with a couple of acres needed a gate lodge and a winding avenue which brought the visitor to a broad gravel sweep in front of the hall door. Whether the architecture was Italianate or Gothic did not matter greatly. Many of the earlier houses were plain, so it was common for wealthy Victorian owners to add porticos, stucco enrichments, cornices and brackets.’

The earliest mention of Buona Vista is from a newspaper article in 1866 which mentions a Mrs. Courtenay as resident. Another newspaper notice in 1866 mentions Bella Vista.

Birth notice from Dublin Weekly Nation 1st September 1866
Newspaper Notice dated April 1886

Memorial to Edward Courtenay in Holy Trinity Church, Killiney

Detail from 1888 Ordnance Survey sheet XXVI-17

A fire in 1942 partially damaged Buona Vista and the house was surveyed in order to assist with the restoration works. These drawings are the only records that we have managed to locate so far for these houses and were found in the Irish Architectural Archive.

Survey plans and sections by Wm. Mitchell Architects 1942. Courtesy of The Irish Architectural Archive.
Elevations as surveyed in 1942. Courtesy of The Irish Architectural Archive.
Letter from the Quantity Surveyors to the Architects regarding the restoration works at Buona Vista in 1942. Courtesy of The Irish Architectural Archive.