Control Data Australia Memories compiled by Brian Membrey
Hotel Esplanade (aka The Espy)
The Esplanade, St. Kilda
Eastern side, occupying the block between Pollington and Victoria Streets.
Personally, I don't recall ever visiting the Espy, but Ron Bird assures me it was much favoured by the early engineering group for after works drinks and Bob Hammond’s favourite pub around 1964-
Perhaps rather surprisingly, the Esplanade was one of the later additions to the inner-
site, had, however been used for an earlier hotel, initially The New Baths Hotel when first licensed to William H. Johnston in April, 1857; (amongst other interests, he was part-
The building then appears to have been used by a group calling itself the Victorian Hydropathic Institution in conjunction with the sea-
The Hotel Esplanade like its later counterparts the Hotel Victoria and the Beaconsfield was designed very much for the accommodation of visitors to the sea baths that line the beach front through this section of St. Kilda.
The hotel was modernised in 1974 at a cost of $50,000.
The Espy's current fame as a venue for live music is far from new.
The hotel was taken over around 1920 by businessman Thomas Carlyon, also the proprietor of Melbourne largest taxi company at the time; Carlyon's tastes were very much influenced by time he had spent in the U.S.A. and during the forty years he remained licensee the hotel became a premier jazz venue.
During the 30s and 40s, big bands provided weekly entertainment; traditional jazz and be-
The building was extended in 1930 with the addition of another 29 rooms, or 169 in total, the new features including an electric pressing room for lady guests, a library, writing room and a telephone and hot and cold water bathroom attached to each guest room. (it was note the Espy then had 90 permanent guests and resident staff, this level maintained through to the 1960s).
|Licenses Reduction Act|
|Six O'Clock Swill|
|Casa de Manana|
|The Light Car Club|