Hotel Flinders, Port Augusta

flinders hotel port august c1910

Flinders Hotel, Port Augusta C1910


Hanging on the wall in the public bar of the Flinders Hotel is an enormous kangaroo skin, the size of which is indeed a very rare sight. The skin measures 8 feet 9 inches from the head to the tip of the tail and 3 feet in width. The skin was taken from a kangaroo recently caught by Mr. W. Williams of Yantanabie.
West Coast Sentinel (Streaky Bay, SA) Friday 11 October 1935

Flinders Hotel G

The Hotel Flinders, Port Augusta, South Australia. Picture: Hotel Flinders

Hotel Flinders History

Known as Mackay’s Hotel after owner Alexander Mackay, the hotel was opened June 1878 on the corner of Commercial Road and Chapel Street, Port Augusta.

The first known licensee was Alexander Mackay.  The hotel was constructed during the boom years of Port Augusta when between 1878 and 1883 12 hotels were built.

Of two stories, the 40-room stone and Portland cement rendered building stood opposite the post and Telegraph Office on the corner of Commercial Road and Mackay Street. It cost £7,000 to build.

‘MacKay has now opened his new hotel in Port Augusta, which is the largest and most commodious house of its kind in SA… A large and convenient room for commercial travellers, also ample stable room, and horse and traps of every description at a moments notice…’

The Hotel Flinders attained its current name when James W. Gawen took over ownership in March 1879. His vision of a “Flinders Family Hotel” is continued to this day where people can have a drink, a bite to eat sampling the local produce and delicacies and also stay the night experiencing the history behind this amazing hotel and township.

The original description of the Flinders Hotel Motel in the Port Augusta Dispatch of 1880 describes the ‘Flinders Family Hotel.’

“…The principal feature in hotels is the “Flinders” quite a palatial affair of from 40-50 rooms.  Travellers can be accommodated with every luxury, including a look out on the top of the house, spacious promenade, fine billiard room, with two tables…”

The ‘Flinders’ today retains its historic feel, with the all the modern features expected in a modern hotel. Check out the hotel’s website:


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– History and pictures: Thanks to


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Categories: South Australia Hotels

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