Steyne Hotel, Manly

3000 bricks we required to complete the façade restoration for one of Manly's oldest buildings.

The iconic Hotel Steyne is one of Manly’s oldest buildings, noted for having a frontage to East Steyne and the ocean beachfront.

The original pub was built in 1859 by Manly’s founding father – Henry Gilbert Smith. It was designed by the renowned colonial architect, Edmund Blacket. Completed by September 1859, this well-proportioned, elegant two-storey stone building dominated The Corso and the tiny new village.

Cost of project: $2.9M 

Duration of project: 8 months


  • Facade Refurbishment
  • Brick Pointing 
  • Concrete Cancer Repair
  • Crack Remediation
  • Waterproofing
  • Window Replacement
  • Awning Replacement

Unlike now, it was not one of many buildings facing the ocean with unrivalled views and offering beachside accommodation. Regarded as a ‘first-class family hotel’, the Hotel Steyne boasted thirty apartments, plus an extensive range of kitchens, cellars, out-offices and much more. The first lessee of the Steyne Hotel was John Campbell from Brisbane. However, Campbell remained less than three months. He was replaced by Russell Chalk, proprietor of the Baden Baden Guest House, nearby on the corner of Raglan Street and East Steyne.

This first hotel did not last long in its original state. A mysterious fire burnt the famous pub to the ground in June 1863. After this it was rebuilt to a new Blacket design.  The hotel reopened in 1864 and was back in business that year. 

Final renovations were made to the business in 1936 and since then it has become a registered heritage building. It has changed hands many times and had many owners. In 1922 it was bought by brewers Reschs and 13 years later in 1935 it had a new owner – the brewing giant Tooth & Co. In 1935 the hotel was rebuilt at a cost of $25,000 – a considerable sum in those days and in more recent times to Sam Arnaout for $65m. From the day the doors first opened, The Hotel Steyne has been involved in all community aspects and events, earning its name as Manly’s true local. 

It is constantly changing with the times and meeting the increasing demands of a high-profile venue in one of Australia’s best-known suburbs. It now has an impressive six bars and accommodation facilities – this pub has something to offer everyone. 

Boasting ocean views, a relaxed family friendly atmosphere and a variety of entertainment for all ages, the Hotel Steyne really is a classic that has proven it will never go out of style.  In 2019, IRIS capital proposed a site visit with Period Home at the site of Manly’s Steyne Hotel in order to discuss how façade rectification works would improve the dated appearance of the façade whilst helping to restore the building. Some years ago, due to the failing masonry on the south-eastern corner of the Steyne Hotel, the rusted Juliette Balconies were removed and thrown away. It was part of our responsibility to re-fabricate these Juliette Balconies and affix them to the façade once again.

Starting in August 2019, we have been madly liaising with the Northern Beaches Council and gathering all permits required to restore the Steyne Hotel establishing a safe working environment. In March 2020 we established site and commenced restoration and rectification works to the external façade which included removal of the existing deteriorated mortar to a depth of 30mm and reinstatement with new mortar which will withstand the harsh environment in which Manly’s true local stands.

We also looked to further reinforce the masonry by installing stainless steel remedial wall ties to the external skin of brickwork in order to retrofit old rusted ties with new.

A number of years ago, the lintels from the eastern elevation were removed and replaced, along with the steel lintels, the brickwork above them was removed and disposed of. The brickwork they removed was original to the building in both its design and era. The style of brickwork originally was a double staggered soldier course with decorative corbel elements on either end of the staggered brickwork.

We are told the bricks used were brought to Australia from England which made these bricks impossible to find in order to replace the brickwork on the eastern elevation.

Period Home’s executive team spent 4 months hunting all corners of our island continent to find the 3000 bricks we required to complete the façade restoration only to find what we are confident is the best match available in our own back yard. We purchased our stockpile of bricks and replaced the poorly constructed brickwork on the Eastern Elevation being careful to reinstate all the brickwork to which it once was many decades ago.