The Queen’s Ferry Hotel was established in 1865 and fables be told it was once a meeting place for gold miners, murderers and meandering vagabonds. Named after the birth place of its founder pioneering Scotsman ‘Mr John Robertson’, The Queen’s Ferry as it is now known, was considered to be one of the finest hotels in Auckland.
“Yesterday we were called in the course of business, into The Queen’s Ferry Hotel on Vulcan Lane and were surprised to find, in this unpretending hostelry, such first-class accommodation as is provided by Mr Robertson for his customers. There is not a hotel in Auckland that can surpass The Queen’s Ferry Hotel” (NZ Herald 1871)
John Robertson who originally settled in New South Wales, sailed the Tasman Sea in 1840 with then Governor of New Zealand Captain William Hobson to make Auckland his home. Two years later on 29th June 1842 John purchased this site on Vulcan Lane at auction, while engaged in work as a sawyer and soon opened a General Store.
This wooden General Store was unfortunately engulfed by ‘The Great Fire’ of 1857 and in its place, Robertson built a two-story brick building. Eight more years slowly passed by and it was not until 1865 that conditional approval of Auckland’s first licence was granted, and The Queen’s Ferry Hotel was born.
A lot has happened since 1865, there are many to thank whom continued the good work of John Robertson and we are blessed to still have the use of this historic licence, serving publicans with fine food and liquor, while providing a place to parley in good company. We hope your experience at Queen’s Ferry will in some way bring you back to a time where beer, business and banter flowed, finding gold meant that you could finally retire and remind you it wasn’t until 1968 in New Zealand that everyone could wine and dine past six o’clock post meridiem.
Here’s to history in the making and to John Robertson for putting his best foot forward.
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