Work is about to start on Clifton’s Imperial Hotel!
New owner Shellharbour Worker’s Club has held discussions with neighbours and is now ready to proceed with the first stage of works on the property.
Club Marketing Officer Brooke Formica says the restoration of the venue is a two year plan. “We don’t have an exact timeframe because there are still a lot of variables,” she says. “But we are keen to get the venue up and running as quickly as we can.”
The historic hotel was first opened in 1884 and was closed in 2003 when the landslide which blocked Lawrence Hargrave Drive caused a decline in business.
“The final designs are still being worked on but when they’re done, and we have Council approval, we can start to build what will be a vibrant food and beverage outlet. It will not be a pub, and we have made that clear to the neighbours.
“We will serve breakfast, lunch and dinner and we will be licensed. And we will be there for the tourists who visit the bridge, but it’s also important to us that we are part of the local community. We want locals to enjoy our venue as much as visitors.”
Initial action will see safety fences erected at the site while work is carried out to prepare for the build. “We will start with pest control and general repairs to the fabric of the building,” says Brooke.
“We have engaged architects Welsh + Major to design the upgrade. We selected this firm based on their extensive experience with historical properties. They have also been recognised with several awards for design excellence, including the Awards for Heritage Architecture in 2014.”
“When we bought the venue from the WIN Corporation there was an existing DA. To ensure that DA remains relevant, work has to commence. We are also hopeful to only make minor alterations to that DA so our submission to council is a Section 94 and not a whole new submission. “
Work is set to start this week, with construction workers mindful of the closure of Lawrence Hargrave Drive from Sunday May 16