AMA Homes brings to the market this magnificent Victorian five bedroom semi-detached house in the sought after Murrayfield Area.
Tor House is a magnificent Victorian villa, modelled in a Neo-Jacobean style, which lies in the prestigious Edinburgh suburb of Murrayfield. AMA Homes has sympathetically restored and converted the house into two substantial family homes: Tor House East and Tor House West.
Repair and Prepare is an approach that AMA take to all its period conversions. This involves conserving, consolidating and restoring the original fabric of the building, but with 21st century materials, methods and understanding. The result, as can be seen today at Tor, are homes that respect and protect original features, are energy efficient and, most importantly, respond to how people want to live today.
To allow the original features to shine, a lightness of touch was adopted for the interiors. A common colour palette runs throughout the house, and consistent flooring – Amtico woodeffect tiles in the formal public rooms, porcelain tiles in kitchen/diner and bathrooms, and pale grey carpets upstairs – ensure there is an effortless flow to the spaces. Fitted wardrobes provide ample storage in the bedrooms, while the bathrooms and en suites are beautifully detailed, offering just the righter of luxury.
Overall, the exacting attention to detail in the modern additions perfectly echoes the work of the original craftsmen, creating homes where the old and the new coexist in perfect harmony.
A superb wood-panelled entrance with fine carved details and an ornate leaded glass window above the inner doors. Overlooked by a first floor gallery, the double-height ceiling features ornate plasterwork.
The hall is dominated by the magnificent stained glass window, which provides a dramatic backdrop to the beautifully carved wooden staircase. A feature gas fire basket has been added to the original fireplace.
The Living Room
Accessed from the lobby, the majestic formal living room has views out over the front garden from the striking south-facing windows. The original wood panelling and ornate plaster ceiling have been fully restored, and a gas fire has been installed into the feature fireplace. Amtico flooring has been laid in a herringbone pattern.
The Guest Suite/Bedroom 5/Home Office
Undoubtedly the most striking of the original rooms, the space lends itself to a variety of uses and with its own en suite would make the perfect ‘Granny Flat’.
Featuring beautiful timber features, including built-in display cabinets and ornate mantlepiece, it’s the listed wallpaper which catches the eye. This rare example of ‘Tynecastle Canvas’ from the late Victorian era, features embossed linen mounted on canvas and was designed to imitate 18th century Spanish examples.
Downstairs Shower Room
A second door off the living room leads into the corridor from the hall to the guest suite, which also provides access to the spacious, tiled, downstairs shower room.
Accessed from the main hall, the kitchen/diner is the heart of the house and perfectly suited to modern family life. The kitchen features bespoke fitted cabinets around a central, marble-topped island unit/breakfast bar. There is a wide range of built-in Siemens appliances, including a coffee maker and large wine fridge.
The dining area looks out over the private rear garden through glazed doors, which fold back to provide access to the substantial patio area. The floor is laid with large, marble-effect porcelain tiles, which continue seamlessly through into the snug.
The cosy snug, located just off the dining area, is the perfect TV room, with ample sockets and connection points and windows looking out over the rear garden.
The Utility Room
Good sized utility room, accessed from the kitchen, and featuring a Siemens washing machine and a tumble dryer, as well as a sink and range of units.
The Double Garage
Spacious double garage, with an automatic door operated remotely by a key fob. Internal access is off the kitchen.
The Stairs and Gallery
The impressive stairs give you the perfect viewing points to enjoy all the intricate details of the stained-glass window. At the top, the gallery allows you to look down over the lobby and admire the intricate carving from a different angle.
The Master Bedroom
This bright room features a south-facing bay window offering views across Murrayfield Stadium to the city and over to the Pentland Hills. Open plan to the master bedroom but with its own window providing natural light, the dressing room provides two walls of fitted wardrobes.
The Master En Suite
An exquisitely-detailed en suite, just made for pampering. Large format ceramic tiles, a stylish walk-in shower, twin designer basins and a luxurious freestanding bath create the perfect oasis.
Spacious bedroom with an en-suite shower room and walk in fitted wardrobe. Two south-facing windows offer views across towards the Pentlands
A bright double bedroom with en-suite facilities and fitted wardrobes. Views over the back garden through glazed double doors.
A double bedroom with lovely en-suite facilities and fitted wardrobes.
The Rear Garden
This peaceful, landscaped space offers a large patio area, accessed from the kitchen/diner, and a mix of borders and lawn. A range of trees and shrubs have already been planted, but it awaits the new owner to put their stamp on the garden.
History of Tor House
It is believed the house dates back to the early 1850s and was built for James Craig, one of the entrepreneurs behind the Craig & Rose paint company. Founded in 1829, the company was renowned for the quality of its products, gaining many prestigious contracts including developing the iconic red oxide paint for the Forth Bridge.
By 1896, as evidenced by the monogram on the stained glass window which overlooks the stairs, the property was in the hands of a new owner, John Ainslie. He set about remodelling and extending the house, introducing many of the fine details still visible today.
During the Second World War, Tor House was used by the RAF as headquarters for No 34 Balloon Command, coordinating the barrage balloon squadrons which played a vital role in defending key targets from German bombers. Following the war, the RAF converted the house into a convalescent home, which was continued by the Salvation Army through into the 1960s.
In 1970 it was bought by the Lothian Baptist Housing Association and operated as the Tor Nursing Home. Over the subsequent decades, rooms were subdivided to make individual rooms with bathrooms, and extensions were added to increase the capacity. It is fortunate, however, that the main formal rooms were left largely untouched during this time,
meaning we can still enjoy the finer details of John Ainslie’s grand remodelling scheme.