It may not have many bells and whistles, but the Arltunga Bush Hotel slakes the thirst of sweltering travellers in the Central Australian ghost town of Arltunga.

Story & photos by Robyn Rosenfeldt

There’s nothing so lonesome, so morbid or drear than to stand in a bar of a pub with no beer.” Not to mention turning up and the pub’s not even open. For four years the Arltunga Bush Hotel was closed for renovations, but since June this year the doors have reopened and the beer is again flowing.
Territory born and bred owner and publican Guy Bossard knows that things don’t always go to plan, but when he closed down the Arltunga Bush Hotel to do a few renovations he didn’t expect it to take four years. “You always have to wait for things around here,” Guy laments. “I grew up in the Territory so I’m used to it. We were hoping it would just be shut for a season, but every time we got close, something else broke and every year the money kept going. We were ready to open last March when a willy-willy took out the side and front verandah. Then we had to wait five weeks for the fridge mechanics to come out. The liquor commission took three weeks, but once they’d done the final inspection, that was it – it was a goer.”

This story excerpt is from Issue #44

Outback Magazine: Dec/Jan 2006