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Merewether Beach Hotel rebirth to begin

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The Merewether Beach Hotel will soon begin its next chapter. 

The iconic coastal haunt is set to undergo a restoration that will see it transformed into the ultimate Aussie seaside pub. 

The first phase of its renewal will open in April.  

Much like Newcastle itself, the site’s new owners say it’ll be a place where steel city meets laid-back coastal ease, with Australian surf culture at its core. 

‘The Beaches’ as it is fondly referred to by locals, was acquired by hotelier, Glenn Piper in May 2022

He has since been taking his time to get to know the community in a bid to help shape the venue’s next chapter.  

His plans are for the multi-level iconic building on Frederick Street to become the ultimate Aussie seaside pub; a timeless space where nostalgic and casual modern touches meet in all the right ways.  

Merewether Beach Hotel custodian Glenn Piper overseas its 2023 restoration

An avid surfer himself, Piper spent numerous holidays growing up visiting relatives in Merewether and is now passing on the same passion to his three young children. 

For him, the transformation was more about a restoration rather than a knockdown and rebuild. 

“The community has been gathering at The Beaches for generations, so taking on the custodianship of this landmark is a tremendous honour,” he says. 

“With that comes great responsibility and it is incredibly important that we restore the Beaches to be a true reflection of its history and locals that have always made it their own.  

“More than just its art deco architecture and iconic views, we want it to be a homage to the medley of cultures that have shaped this storied place – the friends and the family, the surf and the city, the nostalgic and the modern – all under one roof where everyone is welcome”.  

The first phase of the venue’s historic redevelopment will see the opening of Larrie’s, a hole-in-the-wall beachside kiosk reminiscent of the classic local milk bars of the 70s and 80s, in mid-April.  

Pairing the salty, nostalgic flavours of suburban takeaway joints with the fresh, coastal spirit of its surrounds, Larrie’s is designed with the whole family in mind; a true community hub, serving up cheeky, modern twists on Aussie beach staples.  

Designed in collaboration with local architects EJE Interiors, Larrie’s has taken cues from the classic Australian takeaway and bottle shops of decades past and paired them with an aesthetic that allude to the Merewether’s history as the home of the country’s biggest surf carnival.  

Vintage brown and mustard tiled bars and aluminium-edged laminate countertops line the takeaway atop checkerboard floors, offering guests prime views of the beach as they share a plate of chicken-salt laden chips; the hum of retro-style fridges filled with the best Aussie brews and icy colas lure diners to grab a cold one to-go.  

Due to the significance and scale of the venue, Piper and his team are taking a gradual approach to the refurbishment of other areas of The Beaches.  

The second phase, set for late 2023, will see the introduction of a revitalised ground floor including its expansive main bar, as well as the introduction of a new coastal dining experience on the first floor.  

Merewether Beach Hotel Larrie’s opens April.  

Phase two is expected to open late 2023. 

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