Eat & Drink

Town Hall Hotel

153 year-old Newcastle Pub, the Town Hall Hotel has just undergone a major renovation.

The 153-year old Town Hall Hotel has just undergone a major renovation.

Photos courtesy of Dominic Lonergan

Been spending any time around Waratah lately? In recent years the otherwise quiet suburb has had quite the boom in people relocating, with stats from stating that Waratah is a high demand market, with an average 898 visits per property; doesn’t that sound mental?!?

It’s no surprise that with the surge in people moving to the area, comes with it an increase need for somewhere to eat, drink and just hang out. Well, the well-known and long-standing Town Hall Hotel saw this as an opportunity to renovate and revamp the space. And my lord did it need it!

Sitting right on the corner of Turton Rd and Station St, it’s a hard spot to miss, but even more so now with the renos bringing the building to life.

Established in 1899 and originally known as the Green Gate Hotel then the Marchant’s Family Hotel, the site has been operating continuously as a hotel for over 150 years. So, to say some renovations were needed is quite the understatement. From the creaky, alcohol-drenched floorboards, to the ceiling multi-coloured ceilings; it all needed a facelift.

“It was old and tired it was a good place to come and have a beer, but it really needed a facelift. It was pretty intimidating for people to come in here before because it was pretty ghetto. It was still a good vibe, but it was just really old,” Head Chef Jamie Thomas told me.

Kicking off the major part of the renos in March 2019, the facelift was completed in a short seven weeks and officially opening on the 2nd of July. From the cosy Beer Garden, a fresh Public Bar and Bistro, the building’s new look is well worth a visit out to Waratah.

“The Hotel had a lot of redeeming features and a lot of very poor additions, both in the planning sense and execution. One of the more beautiful features of the original hotel was the pressed tin ceiling and cornices. At no point did we even consider getting rid of these, instead we made these the hero and all design choices made around them.”

During the renovations, the owners decided to take the opportunity to freshen the hotel’s branding to include some of the building’s history. Resulting in a logo inspired by the hotel’s history with the Tooth’s Brewery.

With ex-chef of Winnie’s, Jamie Thomas at the helm, with chef Luke (last name?) by his side, you can count on the menu being absolutely to-die-for. Whether its pub classics, or something lighter they’ve covered it all.

“We get everyone in here, young and old, so we tried to write a menu that covers everyone without being too extensive.

“Without trying to do everything, we’ve just tried to cover most bases which I think we’ve done. We’ve got light food, we’ve got vegan food, we do really good steaks, ribs, and burgers and then the smaller plates are what everyone eats really,” Luke said.

Running meal specials Mon-Thu, from steak night, rib night and of course schnitzel night; you could actually just throw your cooking utensils out and just dine at Town Hall Hotel four nights of the week.

Get out and try one of Newcastle’s newest refurbished watering holes and give Town Hall Hotel a visit.

Town Hall Hotel

29 Station Street, Waratah, NSW, 2298

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