For the past few weeks now, Irish viewers have been given an inside look at just some of the lush homes scattered around the country, as we’ve been tuning into RTÉ’s Home of the Year.
Tonight, judges Hugh Wallace, Amanda Bone and Sarah Cosgrove announced this year’s worthy winners and we couldn’t be more delighted for them!
Kate and Shane Byrne lifted the coveted Home of the Year 2022 trophy earlier this evening for their 150-year-old farmhouse with modern extension in Co Wicklow.
The property has been in Shane’s family for decades but when they moved in, in 2018, they knocked through all the smaller rooms and added an extension to create an open plan living space with lots of natural light.
The family love the sense of history in their home and that their son is the fourth generation of the Byrne family to grow up there and that, in time, it will be a place for his own family.
The eighth series of Home of the Year saw the three judges visit 21 homes across the country but chose Kate and Shane's home as the ultimate winner.
Speaking about this magnificent property, Hugh said, "Arriving up you knew there was something special and walking through the door I just loved the hall. The scale and size of the kitchen was terrific and that big dining room table was smashing!”
“It was amazing because once you went through that door you could just feel the heartbeat of this spectacular home. There’s the intangible which is so important – that feeling when you walk around the home: of the family, the fun, the history, the memories that are in that home – that’s what makes a home for me,” he gushed.
Meanwhile, home-owners Kate and Shane excitedly said, “We are just so over the moon and blown away by the reaction to our home. For our farmhouse to make the final, never mind win is just so incredibly flattering. It is not something thing we could have ever imagined happening.”
“Our house is a part of our family’s history and is truly a home, not just a house. For the judges to see and recognise that is amazing. For us a home is not about the size of your floor plan or budget, instead what’s important for our family is the feeling the house gives you and those that visit it.”
“The other houses in the competition were beautiful and it’s such an honour to have featured alongside them. Just being part of the competition is such a great experience and one I would highly recommend,” Kate and Shane commented.
If you missed out on tonight’s final episode then don’t worry — you can catch up with all the episodes of series eight and earlier series of Home of the Year on the RTÉ Player.