Criterion Hotel, Warwick

News of the day

Warwick Examiner and Times, Saturday 17 June 1911, page 1




The old Criterion Hotel, which has stood on its present splendid frontage in Palmerin Street for a few weeks over 50 years, is to be rebuilt. The cost of the big improvement is to be about £8000.

On Thursday the executors in the estate of the late J. Allman gave instructions for the erection of a new complete and up-to-date hotel, with shops, and the task of preparing plans has been given into the hands of Messrs. Dornbusch and Connolly, architects. The frontage to be covered is over 100 feet, and the site is probably the most valuable in Warwick. On the ground floor at the north-east corner, next to C. H. Ward's premises, two large and commodious bars will be situated. Directly underneath will be the cellar, measuring 28ft. x 50ft., and this cellar will probably be the most spacious in the State.

Both bars will be built with a hot water service, and the beer will be drawn through coils, packed with ice in summer time, the coils being specially imported and most up-to-date in design. The northern portion of the structure will be devoted to hotel purposes, while the southern end will be taken up with a row of shops. In the hotel on the ground floor provision has been made for sitting rooms, halls, stairway, large dining room, vestibule, &c. The main entrance will be arcaded, and provided with a tesselated pavement. The bars, dining and coffee rooms will be fitted with electric fans, while the whole structure will be wired for electric light. As mentioned before the remainder of the big frontage will be taken up with a row of shops, for which there are already inquiries from prospective tenants.

On the second floor provision has been made for a large coffee room, above the dining room, while there will be a lift, as well as hot and cold water service laid on. Right across the whole of the second floor there will be numerous double and single bed rooms, offices, &c., and it is anticipated those will continue on to a wing to be erected at the rear. A balcony, 12ft. wide, will front Palmerin Street. All the appointments will be on a scale paralleling the best conducted metropolitan hotels. There will also probably be a septic tank system, while it is expected the sanitary arrangements will be on the water carriage system on both floors. Naturally, there has not been sufficient time for the plans to be ready for inspection, but these few hints of the extent and enterprise of the undertaking from the architects will serve to show Warwick people that another big vote of confidence in the future of Warwick has been moved by the executors in the estate of the late J. Allman.


The Criterion Hotel was acquired by Jeremiah Allman in 1887. Born in Ireland, Allman arrived in Australia in the mid 1860s, establishing himself on the Darling Downs and acquiring a hotel in Stanthorpe in the early 1870s. At around this time Allman married Mrs Mary Dwan, a Warwick widow and licensee of the Sportsman's Arms Hotel in Albion St, Warwick. The Allmans remained at the Sportsman's Arms until they moved to the Criterion Hotel in the mid 1880s.

The hotel remained in the Allman family until 1968. The hotel subsequently had a number of owners before being acquired by the present owners in 1989, by which time it is understood that the hotel was in poor condition. Alterations undertaken to the hotel at this time included the reorganisation of the main bar area and bar furniture to create two separate bar areas.

Courtesy of the Queensland Heritage Register


Additional images

Discover more