The Local Hotel in South Fremantle opened on 1 September. This brand new pub is located in one of Western Australia's oldest trading hotel premises, the old Seaview Hotel, which was built in 1897.
The new Local Hotel in South Fremantle
The new owners, Phil Thompson and Ross McPherson, only had a four week turn around to transform the Seaview into The Local, and are still working their way through the renovations. Their first priority was to open up the front bar and side area and make it lighter.
The renovated front bar at the Local Hotel
The next area to be transformed will be the old dining area, which will become a function / dining room. Then they will tackle the old drive through bottle shop which will be converted into 'The Local Garage'. Their vision for this area is for a small bar and rotating guest food vans and pop up food vendors. These will provide street eats to complement their own menu and give patrons a range of food options.
Not that the Local's menu is lacking - it is split into snacks, meals and green/grain and is reasonably priced. There are some unusual goodies, like the blue cheese donuts with roast pumpkin and pecan crumble for $14, and the white bean puree with burnt butter cauliflower, sherry dates, almonds and flat bread for $17. Then of course there are the pub staples, such as fish and chips and the Local Burger (both $19).
Phil has a strong background in hospitality. He came from 13 years at the Norfolk Hotel, where he learnt a lot about pub management. The opportunity to take on this new venture was very appealing to Phil because he lives in South Fremantle and loves the area.
"Opportunities to buy your local pub don't come along very often," he said.
Phil Thompson in his Local
Phil wants to make The Local fit in with the local community and for locals to connect with it, hence the name of the pub. So far people have been very receptive to the idea. Every time I've passed The Local it's been jumping. Get along there and see the difference for yourself.
The Local Hotel is all lit up at night