Brisbane Open House
City Hall, King George Square, Brisbane City
Saturday // 9am to 4pm
Sunday // 9am to 4pm
General access (self guided)

The Shingle Inn was established in 1936 by Brisbane based bakery company, David Webster and Sons. The original store occupied part of the ground floor and basement of the City Building constructed in 1888, and featured a shingle awning over the footpath, from which the café derived its name. An entry in the Heritage Register under the Queensland Heritage Act 1992 says the Edward Street store was a fine and rare example of interior design by architects Hall and Phillips with ‘each and every part of the interior and shop front contributing to a homogeneous and well detailed example of the inter-war revival of early English architecture.’

The Shingle Inn’s unique architecture created a distinctive and quaint character unlike any other café in the city, featuring a shingled exterior, panelled interior, dark beamed ceilings and small windows of many panes. The café fit out was dismantled in 2002 when the Edward Street building it occupied was demolished to make way for Queens Plaza. It was gifted to the City of Brisbane in 2010 by current owners the Bellchambers family, and masterfully reassembled in City Hall by architects Tanner Kibble Denton, reopening for trade in April 2013.

Throughout its 82-year history, The Shingle Inn has been famous for its cakes and waffles. Introduced during World War II to cater for homesick US troops based in Brisbane, Butterscotch Waffles served with ice cream or cream and smothered with caramel sauce as well as Lemon Meringue Pies have gone on to become two of Shingle Inn’s most popular products. With the café’s ownership divided between two families over Shingle Inn’s long history, the restaurant retains a sense of continuity and charm. This original café was the inspiration for today’s successful Shingle Inn franchise that comprises more than 56 cafés around Australia, albeit with a modernised fit out, but still serving the same decadent cakes and delicious coffee, that established Shingle Inn as ‘the place to go in town’.

ADDITIONAL ACTIVITIES

Children’s patty cake decorating high tea at 10am and 1pm. Join in the fun for $15 per child. Book via www.shingleinncityhall.com

1936: Original construction // 2013: Reconstruction
1936: Hall and Phillips // 2013: Tanner Kibble Denton