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The Rocks Guesthouse

20 Cleveland Terrace, Townsville

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The Rocks Guesthouse (2016); Paddy Waterson

The Rocks Guesthouse (2016)

The Rocks Guesthouse (2016); Paddy Waterson

The Rocks Guesthouse (2016)

The Rocks Guesthouse (1990); Heritage Branch

The Rocks Guesthouse (1990)

The Rocks Historic Guesthouse on Cleveland Terrace, Melton Hill, offers magnificent views across Townsville to Magnetic Island. Melton Hill was originally the property of one of Townsville’s founders, John Melton Black, and included an 1865 residence (later demolished). ‘The Rocks’ was built in the late 1890s as a private residence by Elizabeth Hamilton, wife of publican and pastoralist Frederic Hamilton. She built this and other nearby houses as investments and continued to rent out J M Black’s house. After her death in 1905, the property was transferred to Dr Ernest Humphrey. He and his wife lived in the Black’s house and in 1909, converted ‘The Rocks’ into the private hospital. The hospital was initially managed by Nurse Campbell. It continued as a hospital under subsequent owners and was reputedly commandeered by the American Army during WWII and used as a hospital. In 1997, the property owner discovered a secret bunker under one of the bedrooms. An aboveground air raid shelter was built during the war years as well. The house operated as a guest house after the war ended. Substantial renovations were undertaken during 1996 and ‘The Rocks’ Bed and Breakfast Guesthouse opened.

Coordinates: -19.25525033, 146.81905637

Full details of this heritage-registered place are in the Heritage register.

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)
Last reviewed
1 July 2022
Last updated
28 February 2023