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Oriental Hotel, Rundle Street, 1964

Photo taken 20 March 1964

State Library Catalogue Reference: B 15320

State Library of South Australia, photographer

South-east corner of Rundle Street (now Mall) and Gawler Place. Established as the Suffolk Inn in 1840, it had a number of other names during its life as a licensed premises, including the Saracen's Head and the Hamburg Hotel 1847-1915. The name was changed to the Oriental in 1915 due to anti-German sentiment and continued to trade under that name until 1966. The building in this photograph dates from 1925 and was built on the site of the former, two-storey, Hamburg Hotel. The building still exists and is called the Walsh Building after Herbert Walsh who held the license from 1915 until the closure of the hotel.

A gunman held up and robbed a manageress and a barman in different city hotels on Thursday afternoon.
Both robberies, which were committed with the utmost daring within 20 minutes, netted the gunman only about £27, although a large sum was missed in the second robbery. The first robbery occurred in the front underground bar of the Oriental Hotel. Rundle street, about 4.40 p.m., when the gunman held up James Harold Mills, 62, barman, of Port road, Albert Park. Keeping Mills covered the man went behind the bar, opened the till and grabbed the contents— £6 13/. About 20 minutes later the gunman went to the booking office on the first floor of the Imperial Hotel, King William street, and held up the manageress, Mrs. Zelma Mary Cocks, who was alone. Before holding up Mrs. Cocks, the gunman asked for change of threepence, which Mrs. Cocks got by unlocking the safe. Grabbing cash amounting to about £10 from the safe, and keeping Mrs. Cocks covered, the gunman raced down the stairs into Grenfell street."
The Chronicle, Thursday 23 October 1952, p9

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