When I looked over the HOTEL ROYAL GRAHAMSTOWN THAMES  in 2008 after a time gap of 7/8 yrs, I had noticed some repair and restoration had been undertaken from the time I had inspected it in 2001/2, at that particular time it was in a  wretched state.
I have since had a chat to one of the people in charge and have been told there has been improvements made to the building, so I am very interested to see what has been undertaken and shall be making a trip up the Island next month(AUGUST 2009) and hopefully will have some cheerful news re the restoration of the ROYAL HOTEL.
I will endeavor to take some photos and will keep this site updated with news with the latest work being done by the present owner to save this lovely Historic Edwardian Hutch Hotel from a dismal fate.

August 2009
         I had the real pleasure of looking through my favorite building, the ROYAL HOTEL THAMES,  this month with James and was most impressed with the work in progress. It's looking absolutely beautiful and a credit to all those involved. First thing I saw going through the main Williamson Street entrance was Mr Hayden Wright of Thames, who very kindly donated the new ROYAL HOTEL newel post, busy at work positioning the new post which will replace the original that " vanished". that was most heartening to see(see photo below.)
I had a good look over the Hotel from top to bottom and can tell you that the work being done there is of a high standard, she's looking really great!  I was shown the beautiful massive kauri  window sash that belongs above the stairwell, and informed by James that it will be replaced with the coloured glass, it should look magnificent. Electrics all looked mostly completed, and interior & exterior painting is well underway. Working toilets, bathrooms and kitchen also finished, and carpet ready to lay. I was also pleased to see restoration to the roof started, that had looked pretty horrific and neglected over the years, to date it is being rust proofed and repainted, a Heritage Green.
However one was not so happy to see the original hatchway opening into the Commercial Room/office from the Williamson Street main entrance/foyer had been taken out and now its just a blank wall, also the hatchway into the Ladies Drawing Room had gone. The fireplace on  left side of the main dining room has been closed off, shame as all the Royal's chimneys are double chimneys/fireplaces.  It's unfortunate that these have been removed as they were an integral part of the Hotel Royal's EDWARDIAN HUTCH class building history.
Below are some of the photos I took that day, they are all copy right. Many thanks to all concerned....a very happy visit indeed!
2nd DEC 2009, This was the day of my birthday and I had the exciting pleasure of looking over the on going restoration of the ROYAL HOTEL  Grahamstown Thames NZ. Bill was busy putting the finishing touches to the beautiful elaborate scroll work on the front veranda, he said that the fancy work/finials for the roof peaks were going up very soon, wow it's just an amazing transformation of this once derelict building .Bill's cute black and white cat stuck its inquisitive nose out the front door to see what was up!  Lovely brass fittings now compliment the outer doors and gold trims frame the lintels & windows, highlighting the Edwardian charm of a bygone era, its  all looking elegant and very smart! The grounds and gardens are looking particularly lovely with 2 magnolia trees  gracing the back lawn... flowers, shrubs & hanging baskets  complete the picture
The ROYAL HOTEL is indeed getting her soul back......what a simply wonderful job these guys are doing, full credit to them!

2nd December 2010 up in Thames for my birthday once again, we sat outside the Royal Hotel in the 2cv and said our  fond farewells  reminiscing, thinking of the  miraculous restoration that had taken place in the last 10yrs from a  squatter infested dump to elegant beauty.. now the Hotel has been sold., and a new page in History begins.......
.adieu fair Lady.........
Inspecting the putting in of the Historic Hotel Royal's  new newel post replacing the original newel post which mysteriously vanished! Left Bill, middle  Mr Hayden Wright who kindly donated the newel post & J.E. Lobet,  Nimes, France 22/8/2009copyrightMost beautiful staircase detail  Historic Royal Hotel Thames NZ 22/8/2009Historic brass feature, foyer of  HISTORIC ROYAL HOTEL THAMES 22/8/2009Most beautiful original kauri ceiling and   roses,Historic Royal Hotel  listed 2 ,Grahamstown Thames  NZ 2009Grand  imposing Williamson St., entrance/foyer with staircase,  Historic Royal Hotel Thames NZ, at the left was a hatchway which opened into the Commercial Room, this  has since been removed. 2009Bill hard at work doing putting up the details of scroll worlk on Royal Hotel Veranda 2/12/2009 copyright H.G.BlomfieldBills  cat having a nosy look  from the safety of the Royal Hotel's Brown Street entrance 
2/12/2009 copyright H.G.BlomfieldThe Historic Royal Hotels Williiamson  Street entrance looking spic and span with the new brass fittings \2/12/2009
copyright H.G.BlomfieldThe Historic Royal Hotel Grahanstown Thames  NZ with her beautiful front veranda  fret work restored..2/12/2009
copyright H.G.Blomfield  My Citroen 2cv from the Royal Hotels top veranda 
copyright H.G.BlomfieldThe Historic Royal Hotel Grahamstown Thames NZ, looking down Wiliamson Street to the sea, At the end of the street in the busy Gold Mining days there used to be The Grahamstown Railway Station, which has been moved into the Thames township. 
c H.G.Blomfield 2009Newel Post dedication Royal Hotel Thames NZ copyright H. G. Blomfield 2009The historic Royal Hotel Thames New Zealand, showing her brave new face and future in the early morning sunlight photo courtesy JP 2009flowering hanging baskets now compliment the sparkling new paintwork....Royal Hotel Grahamstown Thames New Zealand
photo courtesy J P 2009The Historic Royal Hotel looking  pretty good after her restoration..
foto courtesy JP 2009Royal Hotel top balcony view
photo courtesy J.Pattillo 2009Royal Hotel side drive with spanking new gates
photo courtesy J Pattillo 2009Back of Royal Hotel showing little upstairs washroom where stairs once came down to backyard, there were also 3 outbuildings in backyard,..looking good, complete with magnolia trees!
copyright H.G.BlomfieldRoyal Hotel Grahamstown Thames NZ foyer with crowds of Thames folk eager to investigate the amazing restoration of a once derelict building infested with squatters & druggies, now looking amazing.! 
photo courstesy James Pattillo
6/2/2010 Vintage cars outside the Historical Royal Hotel Grahamstown NZ, open day, people were eager to see the wonderful tranformation of this Historical icon surviving   the Gold mining days of the Thames gold mining fever 
J.Pattillo 6/7/2/2010Beautifully polished gleaming floors welcome guests,this once empty sad rattling building brought back to life by jimmy Pattillo & comany, the  Royal Hotel Thames nz..looking simply  fabulous darling! 6/7/2/2010
photo courtesy James PattilloRoyal Hotel Thames open day..this was a great success with many curious Thames folk wishing to see the wonderful transformation work done on this historical building 6/7/2/2010
photo courtesy James PattilloRoyal Hotel foyer showing stairs and back door,
photo courtesy James Pattillo
6/6/2/2010More beautiful lights, upstairs bedrooms  Royal Hotel  Thames NZ
c HGBEdwardian coloured glass windows restored above stairwell, in olden times there was a domed roof  cupola above this stairwell which would have let in a lot of light, making the stairs very beautiful indeed....
c HGBJimmy and Bill partaking of  a well earned cuppa under the flower adorned veranda of a sparkling  Royal Hotel Grahamstown GThames NZ
cHGBSoft light reflecting in glittering chandeliers, whispers of agless elegance of  times gone by...stunningly beautiful!
cHGBLooking down a newly carpeted hallway Royal Hotel Grahamstown Thames, Monsueir Lobet, Nimes France, inspecting one of the newly decorated  top floor bedrooms adjacent to a splendid balcony
cHGBSmart front garden of Royal Hotel, in her heyday when the carriages drew up there was a  little fence around this garden areaLovely side garden of Royal Hotel Grahamstown ThamesFirst time into the old Royal we obtained entry hrough this delivery hatch into the cellars, approval of the then owner, cellar... Right side view of the Royal Hotel Grahamstown Thames 2012
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BEFORE AND AFTER.. the transformation above is amazing, left the Historic grade 2 listed ROYAL HOTEL GRAHAMSTOWN NZ in her  rusted, derelict pink mode, and right after some massive work & TLC by Jimmy Pattello & co/friends etc.,  this grand old lady has her soul back.
Here is a golden opportunity for someone with the means to fully restore this slumbering EDWARDIAN BEAUTY back to her former glory....and save the original floor plan, it would indeed be sorry state of affairs  to see one of NZ's very few original buildings altered beyond recognition....our History is so precious!

The Royal Hotel
December 2011....  is now uder new ownership , I recently had the pleasure of meeting Bruce and Sam who graciously showed me over my very favorite old HERITAGE building and told me of the  proposed plans to   convert this lovely heritage building  into a 16 guest roomed Hotel with house Bar etc., and  restaurant so that' was the GOOD NEWS ....
had a nostalgic  wander around the  lovely familiar looming old dark CORRIDORS and surprisely enough another encounter with some of the odd energies of this old  kauri building, which is steeped in Thames history and the shifty  intruige of the old mining days, wheeling and dealing and many a dodgy deal done no doubt......
.I did capture another orb  which had some weird effect on my camera.........,
.one real treat that day, was to see a genuine CLOCKMAKER.....making a clock by hand from wood!.....all wood.. wheels cogs the lot!  amazing craft, James Lobet  and he had a good old chat, as James being a builder of all wood planes they were in good company together ....... to be continued........
around this garden area in olden days was a smart looking railings/fence- carriages drew up outside, all very grand indeed!
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.....and what did I find in the old Kitchen? :  the wonderful craft of clockmaking..... this amazingly talented man is busily constructing a working clock from wood, now you don't see that often-Royal Hotel Grahamstown Thames NZ..

This site was last updated: October 31, 2020
....which now appears to be a kind of boarding house?lick here to add text.
The ex Royal Hotel , looking a bit forlorn under a grey Thames skygates &  drive at left side of HotelDrive at left side of Hoteloops..looks like some forgot to open gate....,one smashed gate, shame they looked rather nice..a bicycle built for one.....Myself at Royal front door..knock knock whose there? the ghosts of yesteryearThe Williamson Street main Hotel entrance..James lobet-Nimes Francefront windows right sideA front windowfront windowsright side of Royal Hotelside path at right side of Royal..
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