The Criterion Hotel


The Criterion Hotel situated in the heart of Sydney is a unique heritage listed building that was built in 1874. It was once called the Criterion Theatre has since been renovated to a luxurious authentic Irish venue to cater for all your needs Our street level public bar offers a relaxed and comfortable surrounding which merges the traditional pub atmosphere with modern day style. The TAB area Bar has full bar service and is the perfect place to sit back, relax and enjoy a flutter of races.

Downstairs, experience The Snug. Warm and inviting, The Snug is the perfect place to lose a few hours with a cold drink and a hearty meal or enjoy all the big games on our massive TV screens. From cosy corners with booth seating to larger tables perfect for groups, The Snug is the comfort you’ve been looking for in the heart of the CBD.

T’was the 1840s, potato famine & disease were savage. The Irish population was left badly ravaged. Fever and dysentery were relieved only by a Cholera particularly bad throughout the Limerick area. Sailing on board the John McIver, fleeing famine and disease was the family of Gallagher – Lawrence, wife Honarah, and his brother John set off for a new land in 1851, taking naught but the very clothes they wore. John and Lawrence embarked for a distant shore heading for New South Wales, the Sydney Town colony. 6-month-old Mary did not last the journey. Once on shore in a vast new land the Gallaghers became a prosperous clan. Established in Maitland, until in 1854, the Gallaghers moved to south of Dungog in search of more.

In 1853, Lawrence fathered a son, John James, or ‘J.J.’ as he was to become. A great entrepreneur, J.J. travelled as a young man selling utensils and clothing with his horse and a van. J.J. travelled through Dungog, Stroud and the Manning River returning back through Wallamba and Bulladealah. In the 1870’s near Larry’s Flat, J.J. bought land abound with the hope of establishing a new and prosperous town, now known as Krambach. The Gallaghers poured in, Lawrence and John bought all their kith and kin. He built the first post office in 1881, a general store, slaughterhouse and butchery were to come In 1879. J.J. became a married man marrying a girl of Moy, named Mary Anne J.J. then built the town’s first hotel and established a large and loyal clientele.

For over a decade, Krambach thrived til the railway was built and the population declined. The hotel was then run by Austin, J.J’s son, thence Brian, J.J.’s grandson, took over the hotel’s run and so tis a tale began in woe and poverty. But a fair land and hard work ended misery. A dynasty began with brothers Lawrence and John and 1000s of pints shared continues four generations on.