53. Old Royal Hotel - 1904

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The original Old Royal Hotel was built in 1889 in iron and timber. Its first licensee was Thomas Pearson, and its original trading name was the Great Western Hotel. 

In 1903 the hotel was bought by Tooth & Co. Brewery and renamed the Old Royal Hotel. The two-storey building was redesigned and refurbished in 1904 by architect Walter Liberty Vernon costing £1,500. A single storey billiard room at the side was added later but was converted into a lounge in 1969.  

In its glory days the Old Royal was a destination for thirsty miners and wealthy graziers. It was the headquarters of the Broken Hill Propriety Company [BHP] in the early 1900s. It underwent further expansion in 1915 when the billiard room was added along with a ballroom and extensive gardens. In this period it hosted a number of fundraising balls and horse racing events. 

The Old Royal Hotel continued to operate until 1970, at which time it was closed for several years. 

The building was restored in the late 1980s and reopened as a luxury hotel. Its verandah was reconstructed in 1995 as part of Broken Hill City Council’s Verandah Reconstruction Program.  

The Old Royal is now a private residence.  

Audio transcript available.