AUxAU Guide to Newcastle: The Lucky Hotel puts a trendy spin on history

Located on Hunter Street, The Lucky Hotels’ normal front entrance is engulfed by the city’s ongoing light-rail construction. But whilst staff remarked to us that Hunter Street’s closure to car traffic and constant flow of pedestrians has impacted their day-trade, the venue was a hive of energy for our visit which spoke volumes to their renowned American barbecue food, bar and accessible and affordable room offerings.

The building dates back to the 1800s and even after a major renovation in 2014, they have maintained original features as the heroes of their historic yet trendy aesthetic and vibe. All 30 of The Lucky Hotel’s boutique rooms were constructed during this renovation period so all amenities and features are refreshingly modern and new.

Its location on Hunter Street means it is only a 15 minute walk from the beach, just over 5 minutes from Wharf Road and the Newcastle foreshore and a range of cafes and restaurants within Newcastle’s CBD.

Check-in takes places in a quiet side door, removed from the rest of the bar and food areas which allows for easier 24/7 access with your room key.

A clean and sharp black and white theme is the driving force of the rooms and hallways. Black carpets down the narrow hallways as vintage black and white photos of old-Newcastle are a continuous stream of history as you walk through a building that is a relic of Newcastle itself.

The Superior Suite, which starts from $189 a night, features 1 King bed (or 2 singles which are subject to availability). The rooms ensuite is directly to the left when you open the door before the entrance-way opens up into the rest of the room. Each room has a different and insightful quote about Luck hand painted by local artist Brett Piva and we were immediately met with its bold and chic presence that furthers The Lucky’s modern evolution.

Natural light fills the room from the two floor to ceiling windows that overlook The Courtyard eatery of The Lucky. Pops of timber in the night stands, desk and small table opposes yet complements the rusted brown steel of the wall lights and other steel/light brown embellishments around the room.

The King bed was a luxurious sleep with comfortable and calming linen. A door that joined our suite to the next (perfect for families) did however allow noise to easily travel and caused a handful of disturbances over our two night stay.

Our ensuite was so clean that turning on the lights was almost blinding since the tiles and amenities are mostly a glossed white, not that we are complaining. Hot water came quickly through the taps and the shower head was happily high enough to accommodate my 6’2” height with no water leakage onto the floor between the swinging glass door and wall.

A 55” Phillips TV looms on the adjacent wall and is a model with back-lighting that reflects the colours being shown on the screen of the TV to make the entire wall an immersive visual display.

If you’re not feeling up to venturing out into the Newcastle surrounds for a meal and a drink, well lucky for you, The Lucky Hotel naturally has its own bar and restaurant downstairs that is open until late each night.

The restaurant space is a roofed-courtyard space with a ceiling that is 3 storeys above you. Animations and projections are paired with scattered fairy lights to create a dimly lit, warm and comfortable environment. Whilst the venue pays homage to its colonial architecture, the menu does a complete opposite. Enter The Lucky’s American Barbeque feast.

Their meats are smoked slow and low over hickory wood for up to 14 hours at 115 degrees and we advise you try and not eat for 14 hours before you head over because portion sizes will more than satisfy you and more than likely induce you into a hickory, carnivorous coma. The bar offers 16 different cocktails and all are priced under $19. After trying to make our minds up between such intrigues like the Lemon Meringue Pie ($17) or Unicorn Punch ($17), we opted for The Churchill ($17). It’s base of Scotch, Fireball, Licor 43, Espresso, Maple Syrup and Black Walnut Bitters was the perfect earthy yet sweet friend to the Smoked Pork Ribs with chips, slaw and a pickle ($29).

The Churchill

Soon enough, two glistening, rods of 5cm thick pork ribs floated towards our table. At first, the size of the stacked plate being carried out of the kitchen had us thinking someone had ordered one of their sharing meat platters ($80-$130) but then it was lowered (steadily with two hands because of its weight) in front of us. Thinly charred sides opposed the pale pork meat that fell of the bone with a simple swipe of the fork and stuck in the tacky and glossy glaze. It was the best value-for-money dish we’ve had in recent memory.

The writer stayed as a guest of The Lucky Hotel. It’s located at 237 Hunter St, Newcastle NSW 2300, Australia. For more information on rooms, food and drinks or to book a room you can head to their official website HERE or book directly at booking.com.

Look out from more in our new AUxAU Destination series as we shine a spotlight on Newcastle.