Hotel Kurrajong's 90th Birthday PartyShare Event on Facebook Share Event on Twitter Share Event on LinkedIn
The Hotel Kurrajong has a special place in the life of this city. Designed by Commonwealth Chief Architect John Smith Murdoch – he also designed Old Parliament House – it was originally used by staff transferred to Canberra from Melbourne to build the city and remained the preferred lodgings for public servants and parliamentarians for many decades including its most famous long term guest Ben Chifley who lived there for his entire parliamentary life, even eschewing The Lodge during his Prime Ministership, until his death in 1951.
It has been through changes of course and now with ownership by the NRMA there’s a concerted effort to bring it up to speed in the competitive arena of Canberra hotels. It’s strength lies in its Art Deco decor and the latest refurbishment is excellent while maintaining the unique ambiance that makes it so welcoming.
To celebrate what is its 90th year management has made some changes and to get the party rolling a night of elegance and charm with a twenties theme and fine dining brought out the feathers, sequins, fringing, flappers, lots of bling and locals who love the place and had many a story to tell about their memories.
There’s a new executive chef , Saju Rajappan who is well credentialed and had a previous stint at The Hyatt many years ago, who created a menu to fit the theme. The dessert, a deconstructed pavlova to die for. The staff got into the swing of things dressing to suit and enjoying the opportunity to ‘sell’ their product under the guidance of Manager Emma Waterman, who like all good managers can turn her hand to every aspect of running a first class hotel. She was behind the bar, schmoozing the guests, helping with the dishes and attending the needs of arriving guests just a little fascinated by the elegant swanning about of twenties style costumes.
Among the guests a happy bunch of girls celebrating a ‘hens night’, an engineering company bringing their staff for a mid- year celebration and some old Canberrans looking for something different. And that’s what it was. The Kurrajong’s difference is its strength. Somewhere to step back in time with all the modern conveniences and a sense of history we lose in the modern day slick and smart hotels.