Isa Hotel, 13 Miles Street, Mount Isa QLD Australia • 07 4749 8888 • Next Door to RedEarth Hotel

About Us

Information and history about the Isa Hotel and RedEarth Hotel

Overview

The Isa Hotel, Queensland Hotels Association multiple award winner, provides superior accommodation at an affordable price. Boasting 40 extra large deluxe style modern rooms available in a mix of queen, queen single and double queen allowing guests plenty of room to relax and enjoy their surroundings. Located conveniently in the heart of Mount Isa CBD.

Isa & Red Earth Hotels

The construction of a unique air bridge in 2009 linking the Isa Hotel with the RedEarth Boutique Hotel enables guests’ convenient direct access to not only the newly renovated facilities of the Isa Hotel but also the first class facilities of the RedEarth Hotel including a superior room service menu as well as an exquisite restaurant and relaxing cocktail lounge.

Entertainment & Dining

The Isa Hotel, a family friendly, centrally located, affordable Hotel offering a locally desired on-site Rodeo Bar & Bistro, award winning gaming room, large alfresco deck with children’s play area, on premise Liquor Warehouse bottle shop and access to the adjoining RedEarth Boutique Hotel and its full facilities

A little history

The Isa & RedEarth Hotels are steeped in iconic Mount Isa history. Starting back with the establishment of Mount Isa Mines in January 1924, Mount Isa was transformed from a network of miner’s camps into a community. It was the year commerce began in earnest, and the year the community made important investments in infrastructure including accommodation, a general store, a school and a hospital. In 1926 the now known Isa Hotel was built by Samuel Allens when a team of tradesmen started erecting the Mount Isa Hotel on the corner of Miles and Marian Streets. It included coffee and dining rooms, saloon bar and lounge, and billiard room on the ground floor, with twenty-three bedrooms with balconies upstairs, stables and a garage at the rear. The Mount Isa Hotel was opened in September 1926 with Harry Smith as manager who installed a twelve block capacity ice plant to supply the needs of the hotel and the public. The availability of ice allowed several refreshment rooms to be opened, selling cool drinks and ice cream in the blistering heat of the summer. Locally known as the ‘Top Pub’ or Smith’s Pub and later ‘Mount Isa Hotel’.

With the extreme heat and social atmosphere it is no wonder Mount Isa also held the record for the consumption of more beer than any other similar town in the commonwealth. In October 1929, the price of beer became an issue within Mount Isa. A group calling itself the Beer Strike Committee demanded a 25% reduction in the price of drinks, calling for a boycott of the bars, and picketed the only 2 hotels in town, the Argent Hotel and Mount Isa hotel. Thankfully the boycott on businesses associated with the hotels was broken with Norm Smith’s introduction of the “Talkies” to Mount Isa in May 1930.

Later in October 1933 Mount Isa Mines shut down the entire plant suspending production. The shutdown had a devastating effect on workers, their families and the wider community. On receipt of termination notices and final pay, there were 1,400 people out of work including staff, with only a small number retained to provide security and ensure basic operation of power and water. The lucky ones were able to secure train tickets. By mid-November 1933, the town quickly commenced to have a deserted appearance as so many were leaving but there were some who chose to stay. Those who stayed, majority had their meals at the Mount Isa Hotel. While the 2 hotels in town at the time initially did a roaring trade, the gloom deepened when both the Mount Isa hotel and Argent Hotel ran out of beer. The mine later re-opened in January 1934 and pace too slowly began to again flourish.

In 1949 accommodation at the Mount Isa Hotel was priced at a casual accommodation rate of £4/4/- per week or £3/10/- a week for permanent board. The bullring of the Mt. Isa Hotel, a square wooden floor area located just off the saloon bar where many arguments were settled with flying fists, it even resembled a boxing ring, although its primary purpose was to provide ventilation in the centre of the big hotel building.

During 1949-1952 the price of lead was the highest ever know in Mount Isa, which in turn was being poured back into the town with fifty-seven new businesses established over this 2 year period. One of which included Boyd’s Hotel now known as the RedEarth Boutique Hotel. Boyd’s Hotel which took 2 years to build at a cost of over £100,000 opened its doors at 2pm on Friday November 16th 1951. By 5pm the crowd had doubled with an influx of town and mine workers and by 7pm the beer was off. The new Boyd’s Hotel was the third hotel/pub venue in Mount Isa at the time to serve the ever growing township. Between April and October, 1953, 456 arrests were made with the majority constituting public order offences. It was estimated that there were between 500 to 600 people in each of the hotel bars on any given Saturday night, with approximately 700 gallons of beer consumed per hotel. Boyd’s Hotel launched by James Boyd was known ‘as the hotel with a reading lamp on every bed and hot water in every room, luxuries unknown in the west at the time’.

While Boyd’s Hotel was considered a fine new establishment, the same cannot be said for the pluto bar and lounge located at the back of Boyd’s Hotel. Infamous throughout the 1970’s and better known and nicknamed by locals as the “Snakepit”. This rough and ready watering hole was recognised by all who congregated there while indulging in vast amounts of liquor, with many trying to borrow money from anyone who walked through the door and stopped at the bar counter. Slang for borrowing money at the time was known “to bite you for a quid” with many “on the bite” this is how it became known as the snake pit.

Boyd’s Hotel was originally owned by James Boyd in 1951; Following Jim’s death his son Marshall Boyd inherited Boyd’s Hotel. Marshall’s son Graham Boyd also ran the family owned Boyd’s Hotel before it was sold in late 2006 to another Mount Isa family owned and operated business – The Hakfoort Group and renovations started straight away developing this beautiful Queenslander style building into a boutique 4.5 star hotel which was located next to the Mount Isa Hotel.

Previously in 2002 the long standing hotel and venue in Mount Isa, the Mount Isa Hotel was too purchased by the Hakfoort Group, a family owned and operated chain of hotels all located in Queensland. The link with Mount Isa for the Hakfoort Group was not only a move of good business sense for this expanding city, but for the Hakfoort Group it was also one filled with history. A link to what had been considered home to the Hakfoort Family for more than 20 years, it was a connection to the people of Mount Isa and the opportunity to give back to those who were once neighbours, school friends and friendly faces. Shortly after its purchase stage 1 of an extensive 2 stage refurbishment commenced, adding twenty-six guest rooms to create a forty guest room hotel with thoughtful touches and newly updated surroundings.

For a more recent history on the Isa and RedEarth Boutique Hotels renovations and developments please see our next section titled; The Best of both worlds – Isa & RedEarth Boutique Hotel.

The best of both worlds - Isa & RedEarth Boutique Hotel

The Best of both worlds – Isa & RedEarth Boutique Hotel

After the purchase of the RedEarth Boutique Hotel in 2006, located on the corner of Rodeo Drive and West Street and the already owned Isa Hotel of Miles Street in 2002 located next door to each other, big plans were developed by the family owned and operated Hakfoort Group to provide the heart of Mount Isa; the outback mining capital, with a mix of luxury and affordable accommodation and a precinct of entertainment with first-class quality gaming and an almost unheard of choice of food and dining previously not available outside the capital cities.

Throughout 2003/2004 stage 1 renovations began to the upper level of the Isa Hotel with the addition of 16 new accommodation rooms and suites, expanding from 24 to 40 large, modern rooms. In 2007 with the newly purchased Boyd’s Hotel next door an extensive stage 2 round of renovations commenced at both the Isa and RedEarth hotels with the addition of 100 car spaces, three new bars, a new gaming room, modern Rodeo Bar & Grill bistro, fine dining a la carte restaurant and a covered beer garden with three designated smoking areas. Reopening to the public in 2009, the amalgamation of the Isa Hotel and the RedEarth Boutique Hotel via a large outdoor covered deck allowed patrons to access a joint reception desk located on the RedEarth Boutique Hotel ground floor with extended opening hours and the ease of access to enjoy the facilities of both hotels. The two licenced hotels combined provided an abundance of entertainment, dining options and a centrally located accommodation precinct with a total of 70 rooms and suites combined.

2008 and 2009 awarded the RedEarth Hotel with the Queensland Hotels Association award for best superior accommodation.
August 2012 launched the opening of a new cocktail lounge within the RedEarth Boutique Hotel offering locals and hotels guests an upmarket cocktail lounge to enjoy from 5pm 7 days a week.

In late 2013 the Isa Hotel Gaming Lounge was freshly renovated and refurbished with the addition of a lounge bar. Located on the ground floor of the Isa Hotel this new gaming lounge is like no you have seen. That is unless you happen to be in the notoriously famous gaming central of the world… Las Vegas. Patrons are welcomed by a modern and alluring ambience offering the best facilities in the Mount Isa area. Daily and major gaming jackpots and promotions, 45 state of the art electronic machines, Keno, ATM & EFTPOS facilities along with the best service in town. A full bar and lounge are easily accessible and at your disposal with an extensive range of single malts & premium spirits readily available, along with complimentary barista coffee, soft drinks & delicious Tim-tams while you play. This renovated was awarded the 2014 Queensland Hotels Association award for best Gaming Room.

October 2013 construction began for the development of Mount Isa’s largest bottle shop, located beside the Isa Hotel called Liquor Warehouse. Custom designed, developed and built with one streamline goal: to sell alcohol in a manner that is unrivalled in Western Queensland. The design, layout and features of the Liquor Warehouse store have all been created for the public. Opening its doors in May 2014 Liquor Warehouse offered Mount Isa the biggest range and best value of alcohol brands in Mount Isa. Mount Isa has a large population of transient people that are accustomed to the facilities they can visit in larger cities and this was one facility that had been sadly lacking in Mount Isa until Liquor Warehouse opened. Open 7 days a week 10am till midnight and offering customer’s weekly tastings at our exclusive in store tasting counter, largest variety of beer, wine and spirits in Mount Isa, Value for money, exquisite customer service and an enjoyable shopping experience.

During January 2016 the popular Rodeo Bar & Grill restaurant closed its doors for 5 weeks period while undergoing a full internal remodel and design. Opening back up to the public in mid-February 2016 patrons were greeted with a beautiful aesthetically pleasing Rodeo Themed look. The renovation of the Rodeo Bar & Grill at the Isa Hotel embraced Mount Isa’s well known roots as the Rodeo Capital city of Australia with a palette of warm earthy tones and décor that mimics the moments of our countries outback heritage, as seen in the multi-layered textured surfaces and embracing the dramatic feature of the main bar with its rough rodeo themed appearance. Our customers are our top priority in all of the changes made at the Rodeo Bar & Grill and while these renovations were underway we took the 5 week closure period to our focus staff and training, instilling the important of continuing to give each and every customer a quality experience while embracing our surrounds and offering top quality meals and atmosphere for each and every guest. The introduction of an extensive new menu was another key area of this renovation, which included fresh new dishes and our renowned mouth-watering steaks such as our popular premium large rib fillet, selected for a superior marble score served with chips, salad & coleslaw.

The Isa Hotel and RedEarth Boutique Hotel will continue to grow and offer our guests the very best of quality and service while keeping our motto alive. Isa Hotel and RedEarth Boutique Hotel; setting a high standard in regional Hospitality.

Community Spirit

Mount Isa has a diverse population, a good range of shops, many sporting and cultural activities, and access to amazing outback scenery and landscapes to be explored and enjoyed but one of the best things about Mount Isa its rich history and community spirit. This dynamic spirit of Mount Isa covert’s back to what people in remote outback towns know best – true Aussie spirit. The Isa Hotel offers full support and sponsorship to many great local organisations, community events, annual functions, sporting teams and associations within Mount Isa.


2015 WINNER QHA

Best Marketed Hotel – Isa Hotel


2014 WINNER QHA

Best Gaming Venue – Isa Hotel


2014 WINNER QHA

Best Gaming Venue – Isa Hotel


2013 FINALIST QHA

Best Mid-Range Accommodation 3.5 stars


2015 WINNER QHA

Best Retail Bottle Facility – Liquor Warehouse


2015 WINNER

Steak of Origin, Best Steak in Mount Isa


2014 WINNER

Steak of Origin – Best Steak in Mount Isa


2012 WINNER QHA

Best Employee Guest Services

Longest standing hotel and venue in Mount Isa

Purchased in 2002 by the Hakfoort Group, a family owned and operated chain of hotels. Mount Isa was not only a business related decision, but one filled with history for the Hakfoort Group. It’s about us and the link to what had been considered home to the Hakfoort family for more than 20 years. A connection to the people in Mount Isa. The opportunity to give back to those who were once neighbours, school buddies and friendly faces.

Refurbishment commenced shortly after its purchase, adding twenty-six guest rooms to create a forty guest room hotel. The second phase included the deck and air bridge which was added between the Isa and RedEarth Hotel. A steak house known as the Rodeo Bar and Grill was another addition. External street level windows were used to invite the street scene to interact with the premise. Upgrades took a lengthy period of eighteen months to complete and the Isa Hotel was officially reopened in July 2009. Remodeling of the gaming lounge and bar was completed in 2013. Proudly holding the Queensland Hotel Association Award for Best Gaming Lounge 2014. Completing the extensive developments was the Rodeo Bar and Grill’s renovations in 2016.

We source the majority of our stock from Australian owned companies as we take pride in our country. We have a big heart for the Mount Isa community and employ one hundred locals. Sponsoring the Mount Isa Rugby Union, AFL and Soccer teams and proud founder of the Isa Street Festival. Isa’s community support since the day we opened the doors has been tremendous. We give thanks to our customers, in this time of gratitude. Your continued patronage over the past seven years is what has built this hotel into the iconic venue it is today.