Step back in time to 2012 and you might have been parking the car in Machen to go and have a social drink with your friends at a quiz and curry night or a meal in the beer garden of this substantial pub called The Ffwrwm Ishta.
Turn up again in 2013 for a Sunday lunch and you would have been disappointed, as the public house on the main street of this Caerphilly borough town had called last orders for the final time and shut.
It is believed that the pub once acted as a base for Machen RFC and drinking guests of the past included famous Welsh rugby players such as Gareth Edwards and JPR Williams during the 1970s.
The journey of this building continued with the conversion into a five bedroom house that was put on the market in 2015.
The car park of the former pub was separated from the house and after a number of planning applications for the construction of a mixed use commercial building, the plot is now a Co-op store.
If anyone visits the site now in 2020 instead of the pub they will find a house that is arguably the best party pad in the area.
The pub’s bar and lounges might have gone but in their place is a new two-storey extension that houses a huge party room on the ground floor, plus a master bedroom on the first floor.
The party room is a whopping 10 metres long and is currently set up as a gym and games room.
The running machine is surrounded by video arcade games and there’s even a drinks fridge for when the running, or gaming, gets too challenging and a drinks break is required.
The party room is so big it easily fits a pool table in the centre lit by a funky overhead LED lighting panel, so lack of light cannot be used as an excuse for missing an easy pot.
And when all that fun becomes just too tiring, there’s a substantial seating area at the end of the room to watch the match or a movie on the widescreen television.
But actually that’s not the only place in this sprawling home where family and friends can gather and socialise.
The windowless basement is the perfect place for a mini cinema, so that’s exactly what you will find down in the former pub cellar.
Six massive and very inviting chairs are gathered around a very large screen television.
Tucked away underground and combined with even more funky LED lights, the party down here can be the loudest disco without disturbing the neighbours.
But the party can easily spill out into the garden too, as there’s a surprise feature to tempt people out of the cellar.
Even with the car park and side garden redeveloped, the house retains a large slice of the former pub’s beer garden.
The central open-plan kitchen diner opens out onto a vast patio area big enough for a whole rugby team to easily enjoy alfresco dining.
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Down some steps and there is a large deck area as another option for a dining or relaxing space.
Keep going down the length of the garden and there’s an enticing adventure play area for the little kids and, rather surprisingly, a full size five-a-side pitch for the big kids, including full-grown adults.
So when the games have finished inside, there’s a mini football tournament waiting to get underway on the mini football pitch.
The outside space is substantial, including ample parking for all the guests’ cars, although the party is unlikely to be any time soon with the current coronavirus climate restricting large social gatherings.
In the past, planning applications have been made, and refused, to develop this pocket of land into a residential building plot so if this is a driving force behind the purchase of this property by a potential buyer, further research needs to be done.
The extra outdoor space might be perfect for the addition of a swimming pool, outdoor garden room or even a granny annexe, subject to planning permission, of course.
Inside the former pub, the house has been designed to be as sociable as possible and not just in the games room and cinema.
The central core of the living space is a spacious open-plan kitchen diner that opens out onto the vast patio via two sets of bifold doors.
Although the space is substantial, it has been zoned successfully to create obvious ‘hubs’ of functions and activities.
The high-end kitchen with integrated appliances, solid wood surfaces and views out to the garden from the kitchen sink, is partially set back from the main open-plan area.
This element of the room’s design gives the space more character than if it were just designed as a simple, square room.
The dining area is situated at the most obvious spot next to the kitchen and overlooking the garden, and the lounge area features large comfy sofas clustered around a feature stone fireplace.
For anyone needing to work there is a separate study currently being used as a playroom accessed off the open-plan living space, plus the ground floor also boasts a shower room and separate utility room.
As the shower room is located down a separate corridor there is the possibility of reworking this whole space.
Knocking through a door from the shower room corridor to the study could create a sixth ensuite bedroom, handy for any older guests being located on the ground floor.
The whole new wing of the house could be reinvented even further into a dedicated annexe if the games room was sacrificed to be converted to a second kitchen and living space.
In the main original wing of the former pub can be found a large, separate living room that also has a stone fireplace and log burner as its main design feature.
Upstairs the layout has been designed to offer maximum bedrooms and maximum access to bathrooms.
The master bedroom is found within the new wing of the house and has an ensuite with substantial walk-in shower.
Just down the landing is a contemporary, four-piece family bathroom with a feature, free-standing bath.
Although this is the main bathroom in the house, it is also a ‘Jack and Jill’ bathroom, with access from bedrooms two and three into the space; that’s three doors to lock before you get into your bubble bath.
The Jack and Jill bathroom idea continues into the original wing of the pub, with bedroom four and five having dedicated access to and sharing bathroom number three.
The decor throughout the home is neutral, perfect as a base for the next owner to indulge in updating it to express their own interior design style.
The kitchen and bathrooms are all finished to a high standard, so maybe all that remains for a new owner is adding furniture and maybe browsing colour charts and fabric swatches to make the house their personal space.
They might even add a bar area to the house to pay homage to the property’s former life as the Ffwrwm Ishta pub.
The party pad in Machen is for sale for a guide price of £700,000 to £725,000 with estate agents Pinkmove, call 01633 746088 to find out more.