Eat and Drink

The Pub at the
New Royal Hotel Rubyvale…

Striking it rich is hard and thirsty work. When mealtime bumps up against fossicking, panning, driving or going about your business, there’s only one solution: head for the Pub at the New Royal Hotel Rubyvale. The place for lunch, dinner and a few drinks in beautiful downtown Rubyvale, the Pub is open daily from 12 – 2 pm for lunch, 6-8 pm for dinner, and all day (until the staff gets tired and wants to go home) for drinks and snacks.

The focal point of the community, in fact the centre of everything for 15 km in any direction, the Pub is open rain or shine, summer and winter. We’re here for you when you need a hassle-free place to warm up, cool down or socialize by a roaring fire. Send something frosty down the pipes with an impressive choice of beers on tap or by the bottle, or warm your cockles with comfort food designed to revive you from the inside out. A glass of wine? This is Australia – we’ve got you covered! A bottle of spirits – ask the barman, Rubyvale’s only bottle shop is attached.

Chase it with a little food – choose from a tempting selection of daily specials in the dining room or the chef’s choice of pies, sausage rolls and whatever else he dreams up at the bar. Having spurned Paris, New York and Sydney for the freedom and authenticity of Rubyvale, our chef turns out some of the best eats west of Emerald. Our special kids’ menu means that they’re kept busy while you enjoy your steak or seafood.

And it’s not just chow and libations that we offer: there’s poker machines (the pinging noise means that someone has just financed his dinner!), a pool table and darts to test your steady hand, rugby on television, irreverent conversation from the barman, local mining history displayed on the walls and a warm fire in the fireplace / cool breeze on the veranda to set the world right. After all, this is outback Queensland, where Australia shines!

Not staying in our cabins (gasp!) No need to worry about getting here and getting back. Since beer is now cheaper than fuel, drink, don’t drive! Our courtesy bus has scheduled trips to Rubyvale and Sapphire.

To learn more, click on the tabs above, or contact us at

As an added benefit, the Pub is the place to hear the latest tips, gossip, rumours, unsubstantiated facts and half-remembered history, making your trip to Rubyvale an unforgettable adventure. Some of our best local stories, to wet your appetite for more:

  • In 1979, young “Smiley” Nelson kicked a rock from someone’s discard heap of mullock behind the Post Office, thereby discovering the world’s biggest-ever yellow sapphire, an astonishing 2019 carats. His father sold it to a local dealer who sold it to a New York jeweller who cut it into a gem that sold for AU $1.87 million.
  • Wal Shadworth found a 100 carat honey coloured sapphire in a lizard hole near Rubyvale. He had it cut to a 30 carat gem dubbed “Autumn Glory” and sent it off to a dealer he was told about in Texas. Many years later, the search is still on for both the gem and the dealer!
  • In 1935, 12 year old Roy Spencer showed a large rock to his miner father who dismissed it as a useless black crystal. The family used it as a door stop until 1948 when Mr. Spencer learned that in rare cases, sapphires can be black. Chipping it open, he discovered the worlds’ largest black sapphire, a whopping 1400 carats. He advertised it for sale and a Los Angeles dealer, Harry Kazanjian, flew out to Anakie and made an offer of $18,000 on the spot – a fortune in 1948. Spenser quickly accepted. Mr. Kazanjian cut the sapphire to a 700 carat gem he called “The Black Star of Queensland” and sold it for $1 million – not a bad return on $18,000 plus airfare. The gem has since been sold and resold multiple times and today is valued at over $100 million.
  • Moral of these stories:
    1) Do not sell to Americans until you get competing bids.
    2) Do not sell to Americans, period!