It began with a fresh coat of paint on the hotel’s exterior, and now Blackbutt Hotel operators Troy and Fiona O’Connor, have begun work renovating and re-branding the inside of the iconic venue.
“We’ve started with the function space which used to fit a finger-food function of about 100 guests, but at the completion of works, will fit around 150 people seated and 180 for finger food,” Fiona said.
“It’s been 10 years since any upgrade works have been carried out at the hotel, so we’re keen to eventually overhaul the entire venue.”
The choice of an on-trend vintage industrial style design will, according to Fiona, bring the hotel’s brand into the present and create a modern feel to the venue.
“That design is really on trend at the moment and we want to see the hotel looking fresh, up to date and inviting to patrons,” she said.
Featuring recycled brick and re-purposed timber sourced from the local coal loader site at Kooragang, the new functions space offers a warm and inviting vibe and can be used as one large event area, or alternatively, split into three smaller private rooms.
“It’s been 10 years since any upgrade works have been carried out at the hotel, so we’re keen to eventually overhaul the entire venue..."
Prior to the function room renovation, which began in mid-November, the hotel was struggling to accommodate a calendar of growing events, while also servicing its regular nightly dinner patrons.
“We found that trying to fit our dinner patrons and function guests into the one space resulted in a filtering out of people into the hotel area, which was okay, but then we also had to accommodate our sponsored teams who often hold raffles or fundraisers out there and we realised it was just time to add more space, which is a good thing,” Fiona said.
The next stage of the renovation will see the hotel’s kitchen increase in capacity to service a higher number of guests.
Overall, the hotel, through a number of annual functions and sponsorships provides around $70,000 per year to non-profit community groups and sporting teams.
The new function room is expected to be complete by mid-April.