At the opening of the new Hotel Brunswick in 1940, a very old identity of Mullumbimby related a story of the first Publican, Bob Marshall.
"It happened in the early 1880's that a boat carrying a cargo of wine, was shipwrecked off New Brighton. Everyone, of course, went out to examine the wreckage and, incidentally, to taste the wine. But one taste led to another and before long the villagers became raucously inebriated.
There was one, however, amongst all this merry assemblage, who remained shrewdly sober and quietly, but industriously, collected no small amount of the vintage and stored it in casks. Then when his friends discovered to their great dismay that their supplies had been exhausted, the shrewd one produced the casks he had filled with such foresight and sold the wine to the villagers.
Thus, quite by accident (or by shipwreck) was the late Mr Bob Marshall inspired to become a Publican. In 1883 his application for a license to set up business as an Innkeeper was granted"
The first hotel in Brunswick Heads was Bob Marshall's Ocean View Hotel, which opened in 1884, "a fine and commodious building constructed of timber, pit-sawn by local cedar cutters. Containing 14 rooms, with first class cuisine and magnificent river views from the balcony"
For more than 20 years, the Marshalls dispensed "amber fluid ale and locally- distilled spiritous liquors- in the only establishment of its kind along the coast from the Richmond to the Tweed. Eventually, the Marshalls sold the old Ocean View Hotel to Mr & Mrs Currie. Under their direction, the new Ocean View Hotel was completed in June 1909, providing a public bar, bar parlour and dining room - the forerunners to the present handsome Hotel Brunswick.
In May 1922, the Hotel was sold for ₤10,000 to Mr James Cavill, who had great plans for it. He determined to pull down almost all the old building and erect a first-class residential and holiday hotel, now justly famed for its architecture and brickwork.
A number of features of interest are pointed out in the 1940 newspaper report of the new Hotel"...immediately on entering the building one is struck by the circular concrete stairway, which leads to the second floor. From the balcony, the foam-edged ocean and the green of the Brunswick River at high tide present a really delightful view. There is an up-to-date lounge with adequate accommodation for thirsty holiday makers to drink and converse, a saloon bar, public bar, and spacious dining room. Expensive wine carpets have been used throughout the building, including sixteen bedrooms, which have been neatly and artistically furnished in honey-coloured silky oak and have hot and cold water 'on tap'. The new blonde mountain ash furnishings have been used in the upstairs lounge"
Mr. Cavill later moved north to build another hotel on what was to become Cavill Avenue in Surfers Paradise. The hotel he left behind became a favourite for district honeymooners in the 1940's.
Today, the Hotel Brunswick is renowned for traditional pub food, a shady beergarden, and the vintage ambience of classic, Australian 1940's architecture..