Hawthorn Hotel: So long, and thanks for all the beers
On 18 September, the Hawthorn Hotel announced its permanent closure under its current management.
The premises of the Hawthorn Hotel, known affectionately to regulars as ‘The Hawka’, was purchased by Swinburne University in 2015. It had been operated by the Australian Venue Co for the past five years.
The hotel was first built in 1855 as The Governor Hotham, and was renamed The Hawthorn Hotel in 2001. For many years, ‘the Hawka’ has been a staple pub for Hawthorn locals and well-loved by Swinburne students for its proximity to the university and popular weekly uni nights.
In a post on the Hawthorn Hotel's Facebook page, the management announced their "difficult decision" to not renew their lease due to the impact of COVID-19 restrictions, thanking "everyone who helped us to create so many fun memories over the past few years". The post received almost 7000 comments, over 3400 reactions, and was shared around 280 times. The outgoing management encouraged patrons to visit their other Hawthorn venues, Beer Deluxe on Burwood Road and the Auburn Hotel.
The future of the Hawthorn Hotel lays in the hands of its owner, Swinburne University. It remains to be decided whether the iconic venue will be repurposed or leased to serve pints and parmas to loving locals and students once again.