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From prison to palace... sprawling mansion that Quinn calls home

FRESH from his stint in a cramped prison cell, Sean Quinn is getting used once more to living in the lap of luxury in his country mansion.

The 65-year-old tycoon served nine weeks in Mountjoy Prison before his release last week.

He was whisked away from the Dublin prison directly to the luxury home he shares with his wife Patricia.

The embattled businessman built his mansion -- specifically for his retirement -- on the banks of Aghavoher Lough, close to Ballyconnell, in Co Cavan in 2005.

The original, modest two-storey dwelling was knocked down to make way for his massive home with enough room for his five children -- now all grown up -- Aoife, Ciara, Colette, Sean Jnr and Brenda.

Just four years after the home was completed, Sean was estimated to be worth €4.7bn, making him the richest person in Ireland at the time.

But fortunes have changed for the cement manufacture and hotel mogul -- who was jailed for contempt of court.

But now that he is a free man again, at least Quinn Snr can relax in opulent surroundings.

The seven-bedroom 14,500 sqft property resembles a small hotel rather than a house and even has outhouses and garages to store up to five cars.







Pool

Below ground level is a dedicated leisure area complete with a 15m swimming pool, Jacuzzi, sunroom and fitness area.

A keen golfer, Sean (66) had a golf simulator and a putting green installed in this area, along with a separate room for a snooker and table tennis entertainment.

Beside this there is a cinema room, according to the original plans lodged with Cavan County Council.

Back up on the ground floor, the entrance hall leads to a formal dining and living room with enough space for a bar and a grand piano.

A large kitchen and dining area is built right around the views across the lake and a family room leads to a circular conservatory and an outdoor decking area.

Off the kitchen area there is what is described as a laundry room and pantry.

On the next level Sean and Patricia Quinn's master bedroom has a balcony, walk-in wardrobe dressing room area, large ensuite and separate linen room with a laundry chute.



Library

Beside the lift area, there is a library and three further double bedrooms with a variety of dressing rooms and ensuites.

On the top floor -- the second floor -- there are a more three bedrooms, the largest of which has its own dedicated office space.

All of these bedrooms have balconies overlooking the lake area and surrounding countryside.

The Dublin-based architects were keen to point out in the application that local stone was proposed for the materials on the exterior.

"Materials for the house have been carefully chosen in order to 'ground' the house to its locality," Paul Joyce Architects said.

In the original application, the architects outline that this house is "more fitting to their (Quinns) needs", saying: "The house has been deliberately set back from the roadway, this provides the best views over Aghavoher Lough and surrounding landscape. It also beds the house neatly into the existing contours."

Speaking from his plush home earlier this week, Sean Quinn, whose family is embroiled in a legal battle with Irish Bank Resolution Corporation (IBRC), said that he was happy to be home.

"I found it tough but when you come to 66 years of age I suppose you have been through many a thing over that period," he said.

"I could fit into most environments and I fitted in."

clairemurphy@herald.ie