Fantasy houses such as Swiss Cottage were popular with the gentry in the 19th century where they could play at being peasants and entertain guests! It was built for Richard Butler and his wife, Emily, whose titles were Lord and Lady Cahir, and was designed by the famous English Regency architect John Nash. The house is inspired by nature and this is evident in such things as the curving thatched roof, the external woodwork, the nature themes on the wallpaper and many of the internal furnishings. The wallpaper in the salon, manufactured by the Dufour factory, was also one of the first commercially produced Parisian wallpapers. It is now regarded as one of the finest examples of a ‘cottage ornee’ in Europe and is now a national monument.