History of the 'old chalet'

The old chalet @ Waterfall GullyUtopia’s heritage-listed chalet is truly unique as Australia’s only restaurant set at the base of a waterfall – and as far as we know, one of just a handful of restaurants in the world situated beside a natural waterfall.

Our character-filled stone chalet was originally constructed as a tea room in 1912. Designed by Adelaide-based architect Albert Conrad in the style of a Swiss chalet, the building is now considered Australia’s earliest example of a ‘refreshment room’ set in a national park – and we are proud to continue the restaurant’s 100-year tradition of serving delicious tea and scones!

The building was commissioned by ‘National Pleasure Resorts’, a national body similar to the current government departments for sport and recreation. The tearoom’s role was to provide refreshments to the hundreds of visitors who descended on the gully each month to stroll by the waterfalls, picnic in the peaceful bushland setting and partake in sporting activities such as badminton, tennis, croquet and bowls (in the areas now used as the car park).

You can still see the initials ‘NPR’ (for National Pleasure Resorts) and the opening year 1912 in the original green shields within the chalet’s ornamental leadlight feature windows.

Download the full history of the chalet here, including the amazing story of our resident ghost!

The old chalet @ Waterfall Gully