Migrating from Kythera, Greece, Haralambos (Harry) Corones first leased the Charleville Hotel in 1913 and began expanding business opportunities in the region with his nephew Jim. In the mid-1920s Harry had purchased the Norman Hotel in Wills Street, Charleville, demolishing it to make way for a modern hotel at a cost of £50,000 completed in 1929. Jim settled in Quilpie buying the Quilpie Hotel and together they were to become two of Queensland’s foremost hoteliers.
The dimensions of the Hotel Corones in Charleville were large by any standard, fitted out in cedar timber, imported marble tiles and large hall/ballroom. The dining room could seat as many as 150 guests. Many people called it the Lennon’s of the West. In a souvenir booklet created for the official opening proprietor Harry Corones invited his patrons to indulge in shooting, golf and swimming parties arranged during their stay.
Many celebrity guests visited the hotel including the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, Charles Kingsford Smith and Amy Johnston. The hotel was auctioned in 1982.
Hotel Corones was added to the Queensland Heritage Register in 1997.
Harry also had links to the Paris Cafe in Barcaldine which opened in 1929. Read more about the Paris Cafe in the Western Champion, Barcaldine, 27 Dec 1930, Pg 15.
Exhibition – Meet me at the Paragon
State Library’s latest exhibition, Meet me at the Paragon explores how the creation of American-style cafes enabled Greek migrants of the early to mid-1900s to carve out a new life in a foreign land. The exhibition runs from 27 September 2019 until 15 March 2020.
Digital story – In 2009 proprietor Jackie Tanzer discussed the history of the hotel and what makes it so special.