Monday, September 15, 2008

Out and About in St Kilda #1

The Prince of Wales hotel. Here is a link to their website. The site makes no mention of live music or the downstairs bar.
A recent post resulted in some reminiscing about the Prince of Wales hotel in St Kilda in comments. It was interesting to recall some things that I had so forgotten. POW is now quite upmarket above ground level but the downstairs bars remain much the same. If they still have $1 pots on a Monday nights, I bet they are $3 pots.

Along with hosting Pokeys, the gay Sunday night drag stage shows, it was a live music venue and still is.

One of the downstairs bars was ruled with an iron fist from the bar side by a transsexual. I probably have that noun wrong. I get scared when using such words.

For Robert and Ian, you can see an extension at the your left side to the hotel. I am not sure what is there except the large open balcony for smoking.

Radio station PBS used to broadcast from The Prince.

On a personal level, we would drive into the multi storey car park at the rear of the building, drive up onto the roof, go down some stairs, pay our admittance and continue downstairs to the Pokeys venue. It was huge. It was the whole floor of the building. There was the showroom, the piano bar, another area where dykes would sit, bits in between. A great venue.

For our entry fee we received a meal, and oh how bad they were. Did not matter.

At ten o'clock, later 11, the venue would close and we would go home to bed and have a good night's sleep and feel refreshed in the morning, unlike today when people are just getting dressed to go out at 11pm.

The ugly orange bits at the front are barriers between out door seating and the footpath.


  1. I've attempted to go there twice, but failed both times.

    The first time I was lining up with friends when the bouncer (a woman) asked me if I was aware what the theme was.

    Me: ""
    Bouncer: "It's lesbian night."
    Me: "OK."
    My female friend: "Um.. I don't think that's a good idea."
    Me: "Party pooper."

    The second time the line was just way too big so we gave up straight away.

  2. "...ruled with an iron fist from the bar side by a transsexual."

    No, no, no're making them too easy for me now.

  3. Caught out by Girl Bar, TDW. I won't, well in the past now, would not wait in queues. Only once and I never did it again.

    I am innocent Brian.

  4. I gotta say The prince of Wales is looking mighty fine these days. Great Picture
    Ah, the meals, golly, I did endulge in a few, I must say. Now did you get a ticket for a drink with your admission, I think so but am just not sure?

  5. Correct Ian. I can recall one Sunday night when the food was so bad, Jan Hillier kicked up a stink and the following week it was much better. Btw, did you know she died in house fire after going back in to rescue her dog.

  6. Food was served only to comply with licensing laws. Plates of it were brought out at 10 pm, and it was dreadful, no one ever ate it. And so it continued every night, exactly the same food on the same plates (changed weekly, but always chicken).

    This is the first time I've seen that pub for a long while, and seems it's had a makeover (paint job?). Well golly, put back the dusty old curtains!- hanging there like sheets of iron! Put back the woeful facade, and the poofter's bar too! I suppose they've got rid of the funny little alcoves as well, just big enough for chairs and a table. What a tragedy.
    I write about those times because I miss them, I miss the bums, transexuals, poofs, thieves, prostitutes, drunken pimp caretakers, and all the freaks among the mentally ill. It was jumbled, disorganised, chaotic, hundreds of cheap rooms for rent -no questions asked, none whatsoever.
    Well you wonder where these people go now. They're scattered, dispersed, an entire community broken up, and I've said before that I don't consider skid row a good thing, but if you do happen to be an 'unfortunate' then you're definitely better off in a place full of others than somewhere on your own.

  7. Andrew I have stupendous regard for anyone who would risk their life to save a pet animal.
    She is blessed.

  8. It doesn't look like a particularly tasteful building.

  9. Living among the types you listed Robert is fine for a while, but eventually they wear you down. But you painted a lovely picture. Jan was pretty crook anyway and it was unlikely that she would live to an old age.

    You'll have to make a trip to see it Reuben. I think it is nice.

  10. There were some character about the place, that's for sure, anyone kooky or not seemed to fit in and be welcomed. The aforementioned bums, transexuals, poofs, thieves, prostitutes, drunken pimp caretakers, and all the freaks among the mentally ill were indeed all present in one sense or another. Being a poof I did indeed fit in.
    That is sad to hear about Jan Hillier.

    Get on down there RVB and check out a bit of Melboune's 'istory