Control Data Australia Memories compiled by Brian Membrey

Koala Queen's Lodge

81 Queen's Road, Melbourne

Location

South-west corner of Queen's Road and Union Street. Although officially 81 Queen's Road, the main frontage is along Union Street to Queen's Lane.

Memories

Few. In fact, none until I did a Cook's Tour of Queen's Road and spied a heavily refurbished building that seemed vaguely familiar with a drive-in entrance at an angle off Union Street.  

It wasn't until later when checking past versions of Flash that the name Queen's Lodge suddenly appeared as one of the three motels in Melbourne that Control Data had special tariff  rate agreements with.

I seem to remember that reception was on left side of the entrance door, the dining area on the right or Queen's Road side.

History

The first reference located in Trove is a Death Notice for a Mrs Mary Power in 1923, the building then known as "Manresa".  

The original building was possibly the oldest of any of the sites later frequented by Control Data, Mrs Power's presumed husband shown in directories as early as 1876 when the building was listed under Emerald Hill.

An auction advertisement in January, 1926 refers to the property as "Chundurloo" and suggests the site was wider than most in Queen's Road at 133 feet with the standard 250 depth to Queen's Lane.  Seven main rooms were noted along with kitchen, pantry, server, entrance hall and a separate outbuilding comprising a garage and servant's room", but this is the only sighted reference of the building under that name..

The Queen's Lodge opened in 1969, replacing a building of slightly confusing use.

In the years prior to 1967, the address was shown as belonging to a Mrs. G. D. McKenzie with the Lister Private Hospital at 82; in the following two years, 81 and 82 were shown together as flats, with no hospital, but in 1969, the motel initially appeared at 81 and the hospital had returned to 82!

The motel was built part of the U.S.A. based Welcome Inns chain.  Never having stayed there, I couldn't comment on the quality of the accommodation, but there was a very noticeable difference in room charges - $40.00 compared to $62.00 and $51.00 for the Travelodge and Palm Lake respectively in the example noted.

Today

The building appears to be of mixed use - now officially The Connaught (part of a U.K. chain).  Bryants @ The Connaught offers studio style apartment accommodation, but there also appears to be a number of floors sold off as strata title apartments.  


(above) The Queen's Lodge, 1974 (below) The Connaught, 2013