Harbour View Hotel and site | NSW Environment & Heritage

Culture and heritage


Harbour View Hotel and site

Item details

Name of item: Harbour View Hotel and site
Type of item: Built
Group/Collection: Commercial
Category: Hotel
Location: Lat: -33.8567522325 Long: 151.2073611990
Primary address: 18 Lower Fort Street, Millers Point, NSW 2000
Parish: St Philip
County: Cumberland
Local govt. area: Sydney
Local Aboriginal Land Council: Metropolitan
Property description
Lot/Volume CodeLot/Volume NumberSection NumberPlan/Folio CodePlan/Folio Number
LOT30 DP788671
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
18 Lower Fort StreetMillers PointSydneySt PhilipCumberlandPrimary Address


Organisation NameOwner CategoryDate Ownership Updated
Repeller Nominees Pty LtdPrivate03 May 99

Statement of significance:

The Harbour View Hotel was one of a small number of pubs constructed in the Millers Point area following demolition by the Sydney Harbour Trust after land was resumed for the construction of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. In an area of trade facilities and industrialisation, hotels formed an important social role. The hotel's location, strategically sited at the south western end of the Harbour Bridge, is a physical reminder of the importance of meeting places associated with movement to and from the city. It is representative of many such buildings servicing the early local labour force and residents during the early decades of the 20th century. Aesthetically, the hotel exhibits consistent Inter-War period form and detailing and is mostly intact externally and internally. The structure is designed in the Inter-war Free Classical style. The hotel is strongly sited and curved around the corner with a classical banded and face brick masonry element. It makes a significant contribution to the local streetscape especially at its curved section of the site. The hotel has significance as part of a small number of popst-1920s purpose designed hotels that have survived in the city area which reflect the social character of the area during the early to mid decades of the 20th century. Of rare significance is the glazed tiles with signage to the lower portion below the awning level façade as few such examples of tiled signage remain in the CBD. (CMP, s5.1)
Date significance updated: 23 Jul 99
Note: The State Heritage Inventory provides information about heritage items listed by local and State government agencies. The State Heritage Inventory is continually being updated by local and State agencies as new information becomes available. Read the OEH copyright and disclaimer.


Designer/Maker: Prevost & Waterman, architects, Sydney
Construction years: 1922-1923
Physical description: Three storey, plus basement, masonry hotel structure with remnant outbuildings and exterior walls. The most prominent element on the site is the three-storey hotel, which strongly addresses the curved corner of Lower Fort Street. The well-composed Inter-War classical free style façade with curved centre piece anchors the hotel building to the site and provides space between the two storey attached columns for sub-dominant groupings of pairs of double hung windows. The fenestration comprises multi-pane double-hung windows composed in pairs with projecting rendered frames, a deep rendered band with an entablature featuring a semi-circular pediment at the corner, and terminating on the top band with circular, raised decorative elements. The façade below awning features highly glazed tilling with encaustic signage to both street frontages. The eastern, or Harbour Bridge, section of the building id two storey at the street with an open deck and a set of rooms to the rear. Internally the lower floor has been extensively modified with the public and saloon bars opened to form one room and the dining room used as a bistro. The upper floors are relatively intact with original fabric and layout. Building development covers most of the site except for an open side service access area to the east,. (CMP, s2.1)
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
The construction methods employed in the Harbour View Hotel were traditional and the structural design conservative. Load-bearing stone and brick, with an internal render finish, forms the main basis of structure throughout the hotel (CMP, s2.3.2)
Date condition updated:23 Jul 99
Modifications and dates: 1923 - general repairs; 1940 - alts to ground floor lavatory and cellar; 1953 - major alts to ground floor; 1986 - major alts to ground floor; 1992 - alts to ground floor (CMP, s2.3.4)
Current use: hotel, accommodation
Former use: hotel, accommodation


Historical notes: The first Harbour View Hotel was built in 1843 on the opposite corner. The present site was occupied by 'Oliffe Terrace'. In 1913 both sites were resumed. By 1922 the terraces had been demolished, and by 1924 the present hotel building had been constructed. Construction of the hotel was funded by Tooth & Co, under a 50 year lease. In 1927 the Sydney Harbour Trust assumed control of the sitefrom the Resumed Properties Dept. Licencees of the hotel included William Ireland 1924-1941 and Gavin Miller 1941-1949. In 1936 the Maritime Services Board succeeded the SHT as owner. The 50 year lease expuired in 1971 and the MSB transferred ownership of the hotel to Tooth & Co. The hotel experienced a gradual decline in its patronage, and in 1998 it was sold to the present owner John Perry (CMP, s1.4)

Historic themes

Australian theme (abbrev)New South Wales themeLocal theme
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Commerce-Activities relating to buying, selling and exchanging goods and services (none)-
8. Culture-Developing cultural institutions and ways of life Creative endeavour-Activities associated with the production and performance of literary, artistic, architectural and other imaginative, interpretive or inventive works; and/or associated with the production and expression of cultural phenomena; and/or environments that have inspired such creative activities. (none)-
8. Culture-Developing cultural institutions and ways of life Leisure-Activities associated with recreation and relaxation (none)-
8. Culture-Developing cultural institutions and ways of life Social institutions-Activities and organisational arrangements for the provision of social activities (none)-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
The Harbour View Hotel has historical significance through its link to the early Harbour View Hotel and as a significant social institution dating from the Inter-War Period. It has further significance through its association with the land reclamation programs of the post-plague era and the establi9shment of the Sydney Harbour Trust. The building of the hotel represented a new phase of development in the Millers/Dawes Point precinct and it was associated for many years with Tooth & Co., a major brewer and lessee of hotels throughout the state in the 20th century. (CMP: s5.2)
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
The Harbour View Hotel has aesthetic significance as a fine example of an Inter-War Free Classical corner hotel building, well designed and executed and located in a precinct in which few such buildings have survived. The hotel was sited to take advantage of the once extensive harbour views and the sharp corner of the intersection on which it stands. The building is a landmark in the area and is a strong visual streetscape element. (CMP, s5.2)
SHR Criteria d)
[Social significance]
The Harbour View Hotel has social significance as a major social institution in the area for over 70 years. Through its link with the earlier Harbour View Hotel, it has provided a continuity of social venue and accommodation for the people of the area for over 150 years. The hotel also has a value as a link to the post-plague land reclamation programs which changed forever the face of the Millers/Dawes Point area. (CMP, s5.2)
SHR Criteria e)
[Research potential]
The Harbour View Hotel has technical significance for its demonstration of Inter-War building techniques and architectural design. It allows investigation into the processes and difficulties of masonry construction in the 1920s and interpretation of an inner-city working class hotel. (CMP, s5.2)This site (assumingt intact archaeological deposits) has been assessed as having moderate to high significance based on its value under the historic and scientific assessment criteria. However, the site has limited potential to yield archaeological deposits which are of high cultural significance. The reason for this is that site development processes, particularly the constructionb of the current hotel, are likely to have heavily impacted upon the deposits which are most likely to have provided new information about the site. The end result is that the overall site significance is reduced by the low potential for intact archaeological remains. (Arch.Ass., s5.3)
SHR Criteria f)
Within the Sydney Metropolitan Area, the Harbour View Hotel is of relative rarity, as few hotels of similar design and construction have survived, particularly in the Millers/Dawes Point precinct. Within a state context, a number of similar hotels have survived, particularly in country towns. (CMP, s5.2)
SHR Criteria g)
The Harbour View Hotel is a good representative example of an Inter-War corner hotel, executed in the Free Classical style, well constructed and detailed. (CMP, s5.2)
Assessment criteria: Items are assessed against the PDF State Heritage Register (SHR) Criteria to determine the level of significance. Refer to the Listings below for the level of statutory protection.

Procedures /Exemptions

Section of actDescriptionTitleCommentsAction date
57(2)Exemption to allow workHeritage Act See File For Schedule

Order Under Section 57(2) to exempt the following activities from Section 57(1):
(1) The maintenance of any building or item on the site where maintenance means the continuous protective care of existing material.
Mar 17 1989
21(1)(b)Conservation Plan submitted for endorsementCMP Harbour View Hotel CMP endorsed by Heritage Council 20 July 1999 for a period of five years, expires 20 July 2004. Jul 20 1999
57(2)Exemption to allow workStandard Exemptions SCHEDULE OF STANDARD EXEMPTIONS
Notice of Order Under Section 57 (2) of the Heritage Act 1977

I, the Minister for Planning, pursuant to subsection 57(2) of the Heritage Act 1977, on the recommendation of the Heritage Council of New South Wales, do by this Order:

1. revoke the Schedule of Exemptions to subsection 57(1) of the Heritage Act made under subsection 57(2) and published in the Government Gazette on 22 February 2008; and

2. grant standard exemptions from subsection 57(1) of the Heritage Act 1977, described in the Schedule attached.

Minister for Planning
Sydney, 11 July 2008

To view the schedule click on the Standard Exemptions for Works Requiring Heritage Council Approval link below.
Sep 5 2008

PDF Standard exemptions for works requiring Heritage Council approval


Heritage ListingListing TitleListing NumberGazette DateGazette NumberGazette Page
Heritage Act - State Heritage Register 0063402 Apr 99 271546
Heritage Act - Permanent Conservation Order - former 0063417 Mar 89 321449
Local Environmental PlanCSH LEP 4 07 Apr 00   

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links
Tourism 2007Harbour View Hotel View detail
TourismAttraction Homepage2007Harbour View Hotel View detail

Note: internet links may be to web pages, documents or images.

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Data source

The information for this entry comes from the following source:
Name: Heritage Office
Database number: 5045342
File number: HC 882589, S90/03342

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