The Grace Darling Hotel
Built in 1854, the city’s second oldest pub takes it name after an English lighthouse keeper’s daughter famed for her heroic rescue of survivors from the shipwrecked Forfarshire in 1838. After spotting the ship shattered on a nearby rocky island, the 22-year-old maiden rowed through a treacherous storm to save nine sailors from a watery death.
This landmark bluestone in the heart of Collingwood has undergone many reincarnations, with the cellar once housing the founding members of the Collingwood Football Club as they formed the club in 1892.
In an ode to the building’s namesake, the modern interior is tastefully festooned with ships and seascapes, while the original floorboards and leadlight windows remain the sole old world remnants of the buildings bygone self. Unless you also consider the ghosts…
In this historic building’s latest rebirth, the venue now comprises of a restaurant, public bar, and two band rooms available for private functions. The restaurant delivers a sophisticated interpretation of classic pub food with rotating seasonal specials and the concise selection of wine, beer and spirits, like the menu, highlights local merchants of fine produce.
The public bar and sidewalk beer garden continues to house a diversity of mingling locals, artists and professionals, offering comfort and privacy for both intimate encounters and group gatherings, while the band room has transformed into a mainstay on the local live music circuit producing a roster of emerging acts.