LESS than 30 minutes south of Sydney you will find the historic former Maroubra Bay Hotel. We paid a visit to the beachside pub fondly known as ‘The Bay’ in January 2019, enjoying a feed and a couple of beers.
Known today as the Bay Hotel and Diner, the pub has undergone many transformations over almost a century of trade.
Opened for business in October 1926, its owner and host was retired army officer, George Hammond.
Hammond, who was publican of the Doncaster Hotel at nearby Kensington, first began a push to build a grand beachside hotel at Maroubra in 1923. He encountered much opposition, despite the area becoming popular with visitors and tourists.
Hammond eventually won his battle, and was granted a conditional license for a three storey brick hotel with 26 rooms on the corner of McKeon Street and Marine Parade in September 1925. Work started immediately, and by the following year the Maroubra Bay Hotel was doing a roaring trade.
Today, the interior of the pub has been altered beyond recognition from when it opened, with a major redevelopment in recent years gutting the old girl of her early 20th century charm. Only her original facade remains. She’s a modern pub, with a face from another time.
Inside there’s the a popular ‘sports bar’, with plenty of big screens to watch your favourite sporting action, and, of course, the metaphorically coded, VIP Lounge, where you can place a few ‘bob’ in the pokies.
Although focussed on eating, ‘The Bay’, has retained her pub atmosphere. There continues to be that feel of a place where you can relax over a few of your favourite brews, while chatting with mates, and watching the passing parade from its front veranda.
The pub continues to play an important role within the Maroubra community. Currently the pub is the major sponsors of local sporting bodies, including the Coogee Randwick Wombats, Maroubra United Boardriders, Maroubra Surfers Association, and North Maroubra Surf Riders.
There was a good selection of beer on tap (I had a Resch’s Draught), and the pub was doing a brisk trade, with a good mix of diners, couples, a few suits, and tradies keeping the staff busy.
Give The Bay a try, you won’t be dissapointed.
* Story updated 2021
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