Buona Vista & Bella Vista
|Name||Buona Vista & Bella Vista|
|Previous Names||Tower Hall|
|Address||Killiney Hill Road|
|On 1888 map||Yes|
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.’
Owners over the years from Thom’s Directory
|Year||Bella Vista||Buona Vista|
|1868||Henry Wigham Esq||Edward Courtenay, solicitor|
|1880||“||Edward Courtenay Esq|
|1894||“||C.P. Coghill Esq, JP|
|1898||Mrs. Wigham||Edward Dowden|
|1900||Jas. C. Bennett Esq||Mrs. Mackesy|
|1910||Thos. O’Farrell, solicitor||Reginald Meagher BA|
|1912-1917||Thos, Patrick and E.M.J. O’Farrell||“|
|1926||Mrs. J.M. O’Beirne||Maurice Lombard|
|1932||“||Mrs. H.Y. Manders|
|1934||“||Richard Charles Bolger Kerin|
|1937-1940||“||Major Rowland H. Lane|
|1943||Vacant||(Destroyed by fire)|
|1950-1952||New house called Tower Hall (Hill?)||Major Cadell (Buona Vista, Latamore?)|
|1950-1954||“||John J. Devaney|
|1960||Tower Hall||Ethna Devaney|
|1975||Tower Hall||John Devaney|
|1975||Tower Cottage||Mary Murphy|
Houses destroyed by fire, from a history of Killiney dated c.1956
Edward Courtenay, Solicitor built Buona Vista in which he lived, and a little later Bellavista, two fine semi-detached houses, commanding a choice view of the bay. Both were burned down in 1942. For some time the site remained idle, but later the present Tower Hill (Hall) was built where stood the ruins of the former houses, and a smaller house (Tower Cottage) in a corner of the grounds.
Some newspaper cuttings
The earliest mention of Buona Vista is from a newspaper article in 1866 which mentions a Mrs. Courtenay as resident. Another newspaper notice in 1886 mentions Bella Vista.
Memorial to Edward Courtenay who died in 1883
Drawings from The Irish Architectural Archive
After the fire of 1942 Buona Vista was surveyed by Wm. Mitchell Architects in order to assist with the restoration works. It is assumed that this work did not proceed and the pair of houses were replaced with a new house called Tower Hall which was built c.1950. 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.
Tower Hall and Tower Cottage
We have very little information on these two houses (other than names of occupants and an aerial photograph, below) which replaced Buona Vista and Bella Vista in 1950. These houses were subsequently replaced by the partially built modern structure which has remained in a state of ruin for many years now. Plans are underway to demolish this structure and to construct a new residence.