Royal Hotel (1893) / Lowood Tavern
Cnr Michel and Main Streets
Soon after the opening of the railway to Lowood in 1884, two hotels opened near the rail station - the Railway Hotel and the Railway Terminus Hotel - both small, single storey 'public houses'.
As more and more suppliers, traders and visitors came to town, a substantial accommodation establishment was urgently needed.
In September 1893, only seven months after record Brisbane River floods had devastated the district, the Royal Hotel opened at the corner of Main and Michel Streets.
The Queensland Times reported: "The Royal, tenanted by Mr C.F. Arndt, is a substantial and imposing two-storied structure, the property of Messrs Blank Bros, saw-mill proprietors of Esk, who have just recently completed its erection. It is nicely finished off on the exterior with artistic embellishments."
Behind the hotel Blank Bros built Lowood Hall (above eft} for community meetings, functions and entertainment.
In the early hours of 24 August 1904 smoke was seen coming from Lowood Hall. Within minutes the Royal was ablaze. The Queensland Times said, "The hotel was full of commercial travellers and besides there were a staff of servants and Mr Abernathy's family, so it was feared there would be loss of life. Happily such was not the case."
The fire destroyed the hotel, Lowood hall, a billiard saloon and Hans Jensen's saddlery. In May 1905 the re-built Royal opened, followed by the new Lowood Hall.
In 1926 the hotel was bought by Christy and Hilda Littmann for 2750 Pounds. In October 1940 they retired and transferred the licence to Pat Rasmussen of Tarampa.
A month later, on 9 November, the hotel caught fire and could not be saved.
The hall was also destroyed and not re-built and several nearby buildings were damaged.