The Laurel Hotel
The Laurel Hotel’s probably well-known to those in and around Ascot Vale. As is to be expected; it’s been there, sitting on its corner pub corner position since 1853. For those not in the know, here’s the news: the Laurel Hotel’s a pub, it’s in Ascot Vale, and pretty much constitutes a “neighbourhood institution” by now. The local watering hole known as the Laurel is run by a mother-daughter team, who’s been steadily renovating, doing up and improving the building since 2008. The pub now boasts a rooftop beer garden, a sports bar, and a couple of upstairs function spaces, and the entire space is still proudly sans pokies. The Laurel hosts live music throughout the weekend, offers pub meal specials throughout the week, and resides (oh, convenience) along the 59 tram line. For a meal a little more fancy-pants than the run-of-the-mill pub grub, Bistro 289 sits adjacent to the main pub. The Laurel Hotel is found on the corner of Mt Alexander Road and Middle Street, Ascot Vale. Uh-huh, legit corner pub. Fun fact: that’s along the 59 tram line. It’s also about a fifteen to twenty-minute drive from Melbourne city.